Changes in Elementary Student Perceptions of Science, Scientists, and Science Careers after Participating in a Curricular Module on Health and Veterinary Science

Published:2015, School Science and Mathematics
Authors:Shin S-Y, Parker L, Adedokun O, Wackerly A, Mennonno M, San Miguel S
PMID:26726271 , PMCID:PMC4696504 , NIHMSID:NIHMS721341

STEM, Elementary, Science, Veterinary Medicine

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This study examined to what extent a curriculum module that uses animal and human health scientists and science
concepts to portray science and scientists in a relevant and authentic manner could enhance elementary students’
aspiration for science careers, attitudes to science, positive perceptions of scientists, and perceived relevance of science.
The curriculum was developed by a research-based university program and has been put into practice in two early
elementary classrooms in an urban school in the Midwest. An attitudinal rating survey and the Draw-A-Scientist Test
were used to assess pre to post changes in student attitudes toward science, perceptions of scientists, perceived relevance
of science, and aspiration for science careers. Findings indicated that the implementation of this curriculum contributed
positively to student attitudes toward science, decreased students’ stereotypical images of scientists, and increased
student aspirations to become a scientist.