Investigating Teachers’ perceptions and implementation of STEM Education in The United Arab Emirates

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
With the current international focus on enhancing and improving STEM education, the United Arab Emirates is one of the developing counties that is paying attention to STEM education. This study was conducted to investigate STEM-related subjects’ teachers’ perceptions and implementations in American-system schools in the UAE. No research has been conducted in the UAE context on this topic. A mixed-methods approach was used to collect data; a questionnaire was developed to examine the perceptions and practices of STEM education for (144) in-service teachers of science, mathematics, and technology, then it was supported by interviews with some of the teachers. Data analysis was presented. Results indicated that STEM education is well-perceived by majority of teachers in UAE, STEM is implemented through project-based learning as a part of curricula or as an activity per month or per term, engineering concepts are presented while engineering practices are underrepresented, successful collaboration and well-informed understanding of disciplines’ core concepts are needed. In general; it was found that secondary and middle school teachers in the UAE showed positive perceptions and better implementing of overall STEM education than elementary school teachers.
STEM education, Project-Based Learning (PBL), problem-solving, United Arab Emirates (UAE), teachers’ perceptions, elementary school teachers