1 Centre for Science Education, Faculty of Science, Aarhus University, Aarhus University2 HE Centre - Centre for Health Sciences Education, HE Centre, Health, Aarhus University3 HE Centre - Centre for Health Sciences Education, HE Centre, Health, Aarhus University
When is Identification possible?
The Danish government has an ambition to recruit more high school students into STEM educations (science, technology, engineering and/or mathematics). The students’ choice of further education is based on the people and jobs they have knowledge of. Therefore, to recruit more students into STEM studies, it is important to introduce high school students to good STEM representatives to make possible the development of potential STEM identities. A potential identity within a specific subject area relies on at least a situation bound relationship to the subject area or the person representing it. Some representatives transmit information and are thereby definers, whereas other representatives illustrates as personal examples and are thereby models. This study focuses on high school students’ views on STEM representatives and the impact these representatives have on the high school students’ potential identities. It shows that the students preferred STEM representatives resembled themselves in some aspects (primarily social and health aspects) and fit their perceptions of a typical person working in STEM in other aspects (knowledge seeking, hard-working etc.).