Edu-Arctic – Innovative educational program attracting young people to natural sciences and polar research – EDU-ARCTIC

EDU-ARCTIC is an EU-funded project focused on using Arctic research as a vehicle to strengthen science education across Europe. It aims to encourage students to pursue further education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), setting them on a path to perhaps work in one of these sectors. The project also aims to establish strong links between the research and education communities by connecting schools participating in the project to scientists at Arctic research stations and research institutes throughout Europe. Students participating in the project have a unique possibility to get to know what scientific careers are like and learn more about different research disciplines.

EDU-ARCTIC uses interactive, innovative online tools that allow to use Arctic research as a teaching tool in secondary school education in Europe. Students aged 13 to 20 and their teachers can take advantage of the educational program’s five main components:

1. Online lessons with polar scientists working at research stations and institutes. The lessons focus on natural science topics, polar research and why they are key to helping solve important challenges in society.
2. “Polarpedia”: An online encyclopedia that contains a glossary of scientific terms and educational resources in at least five European languages. It helps teachers and students to prepare for their participation in webinars by providing short explanations of scientific terms used by scientists.
3. Competitions for European students and their teachers, in which winners are invited to take part in the polar expedition and act there as scientists.
4. Environmental monitoring program with a web-based interface allowing schools to report their observations in an open and accessible database.
5. Teacher workshops and training sessions aiming at giving teachers the right tools to use EDU-ARCTIC resources and become ambassadors of the project in their home countries.