From exhibitions on contemporary science to periodic table tea towels in the gift shop, museums and science centres are brimming with science content.
With amazing authentic objects, cutting edge science stories and hands on experiences, museums and science centres are a rich learning resource that spark curiosity and show how science has transformed all our lives.
Science, technology, engineering and maths achieve incredible things, it can be exciting, awe inspiring, even entertaining and fun, but that doesn’t mean that everyone will automatically make a personal connection with it or feel that it is something for them.
Research shows us that many young people who enjoy science, grow up feeling that it is not for them.
We have found that many people see that science is just a subject that is taught in school and don’t see that it has any relevance to them beyond the classroom – yet in one form or another, it is part of our daily lives.
I’m not sure now when I first encountered science capital.
Whether it is on a school visit, as a family day out, or maybe through an experience online, there are many different reasons why people come to museums.
Science engagement is at the heart of what we do in our museums, and science capital provides us with a research based insight which builds on our understanding of what influences and shapes people’s engagement and attitudes towards science.
We know from research that many young people grow up thinking that science is not for them.
Understanding what influences a person’s science capital is essential to the research.