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Online STEM Courses for Teachers That Build Skills Earn PD Credit

A teacher works with her teenage students on a robotics projectAn ability to effectively teach STEM classes is widely recognized as an in-demand skill,  but doing so requires teachers to stay up-to-date with the latest trends. Because science, technology, education and math constantly evolve, online STEM courses for teachers provide an opportunity to learn critical knowledge about significant discoveries, technologies and methodologies.

Accessing continuing education courses online is also essential for busy teachers. Online courses allow them to earn required professional development credits on a schedule that works best for their situation.

Educators who enroll in online STEM courses improve their skills and provide a valuable service to their students and even society as a whole. A report from the National Science Foundation put the importance of STEM education into perspective.

“Rapid technological advancements and societal changes are our daily reality,” the report stated. “While the future of work, the economy, and society is uncertain, one thing is not: To maintain the nation’s leadership in science and technology discovery, we must create an approach to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education that prepares and advances the U.S. for this future.”

Why Is STEM Education So Important?

It’s not an exaggeration to say STEM education is vital to the future of the U.S. and the entire planet. A STEM education encourages students to think critically, solve problems and innovate. It also fosters creativity by providing opportunities for hands-on experimentation, exploration and discovery—all essential for creating new technologies, processes and solutions to complex global challenges.

The National Science and Math Initiative calls STEM education “essential for the future of the country and the world,” saying it gives students the tools to tackle “the enormous and complex challenges we face as a global community.” These include collaboration, communication and teamwork.

It’s also good for the individual student’s career. In a technology-driven world, employers value workers with strong STEM skills. STEM education paves the way for success in fields such as engineering, computer science, biotechnology and healthcare, preparing them for the jobs of the future.

STEM Courses for Teachers Prepare Educators for Important Areas of Education

Against this backdrop of STEM importance, many teachers choose to enhance their skills in this area through professional development courses. They earn the credits to maintain their teaching license while learning innovative teaching methods, strategies and best practices tailored to STEM education.

Online STEM courses for teachers also help educators better understand the needs of their students in STEM subjects and adapt their teaching approaches accordingly. They also learn how to foster essential skills in students that serve them well beyond the classroom.

The capacity to offer quality STEM education also helps teachers bridge the achievement gaps among students from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Professional development equips teachers with strategies to make STEM education more inclusive and accessible to all students, regardless of their background or prior knowledge.

Fresno Pacific University Online STEM Courses for Teachers

Fresno Pacific University offers more than a dozen online STEM courses for teachers that help them engage their students on these important topics. These courses range from Inspire STEM Learning and Coding in the Classroom to Think Like an Engineer and Teaching Robotics: An Introduction.

Teachers also can earn a STEM Teaching Certificate by completing the required course Inspire STEM Learning and four elective courses. The courses provide K-14 educators an opportunity to expand their skills and methods for engaging students in rich, powerful STEM learning experiences.

Once enrolled, teachers can take up to a year to complete an online STEM course. They will expand their skills and prepare themselves to better instill the STEM skills in students that prepare them for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century.

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