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Research Brief

What Does Learning Have to Do with Science Communication?

May 7, 2019 | Public Programs, Professional Development, Conferences, and Networks

Learning is a lifelong, life-wide, and life-deep process. Narrow definitions of learning as consisting only of conceptual knowledge can limit how we engage people with and in STEM. Science communicators and educators can design opportunities to build on prior knowledge to help people make sense of new ideas and experiences in ways that can guide decision-making as well as future choices. 

About this resource:

This is a practice brief produced by CAISE's Broadening Participation in STEM Task Force to help informal STEM education (ISE) and science communication groups reflect on and strengthen their efforts to broaden participation in STEM. It is part of a larger professional development toolkit, developed for those who lead staff or train professionals within the ISE and science communication fields. Review the full toolkit for 10 additional briefs, a conversation guide, and other supports:

Using practice briefs:

Practice briefs are intended to seed reflective discussions about professional practices, and be read in advance of group discussions among staff, colleagues, or trainees. They include ideas to consider, recommendations for action, further reading, and links to more tools. The task force recommends organizing multiple discussions, each using one or two briefs that participants read in advance.


  • BB 2015 leaves2
    Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE)
  • Sunshine Menezes
  • Citation


    Funding Program: AISL
    Award Number: 1612739
    Resource Type: Research Products
    Discipline: Education and learning science | General STEM
    Audience: General Public | Educators/Teachers | Museum/ISE Professionals | Scientists | Evaluators | Learning Researchers
    Environment Type: Public Programs | Professional Development, Conferences, and Networks

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