homepage-link

The Big Bang Theory and more: “geek-chic” TV provides a boost to STEM subjects

The low uptake of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) has been hot on the sectors’ agenda and a number of government and industry backed campaigns have been launched to help nurture the talent pipeline.

Now it seems that a valuable boost to these efforts has come from a more unlikely source – the world of TV sitcoms.

Popular TV shows such as the Gadget Show and The Big Bang theory have made the complexities of STEM subjects more digestible to a wider audience.

The findings from a survey conducted by Mondelez International, a leading multi-national firm, also revealed that more than a third (37%) of the 1,500 14-18 year olds questioned has also considered taking STEM subjects after watching shows fronted by physicist Brian Cox.

This idea is also supported by findings from Manchester University, who outlined that a rise in applications for physics could be linked to the fact that Prof Cox teaches Quantum Physics and Relativity to first year students.

Despite these positive figures, the Mondelez survey found that misconceptions about STEM are preventing some students from considering a career in the STEM sectors.

Revealing some of the reasons they avoid STEM subjects; more than half (53%) of young people surveyed argued that they felt STEM was “harder” than humanities, while more than two-thirds felt that only those with a high IQs could succeed in STEM careers.

Further figures showed that boys (64%) were more likely than girls (49%) to be deterred from choosing STEM subjects and STEM jobs.

The study comes as George Osborne, the Chancellor, and Elizabeth Truss, the Education Minister, reveal proposals for private businesses to partly fund teachers in state school.

Part of this plan includes sponsors such as Goldman Sachs, RBS, Barclays and BAE systems providing £75,000 over a three year period to graduates with PhDs in maths or physics. This will allow them to train and work in schools.

Commenting, Mrs Truss said:

"Too many teenagers think maths and physics are niche subjects; that couldn't be further from the truth.

"They open the door to careers in everything from business or journalism to technology or engineering.

"We want to inspire young people to study maths and physics and I can’t think of anyone better to do that than teachers.”

Recent Posts

Graduates use Covid-19 to your advantage article header

Graduates: use Covid-19 to your advantage!

Author: Andy Brookes, Business Development Manager, DiscoveryConnect with Andy on LinkedIn Covid-19 turned the world on its head! For University students and recent Graduates, this has meant virtual lectures, changes to assessments and, unfortunately, a decrease in the amount of graduate jobs available. The good news is, graduate recruitment is bouncing back! If you’re looking […]

Time is ticking for your Graduate recruitment article

Time is ticking for your graduate recruitment!

Covid put a lot of things on the backburner for businesses – one of these things was graduate recruitment. If you want to recruit graduates this year but haven’t got round to it yet, it’s time to put the wheels in motion! Trends in the market suggest that organisations need to kick off their graduate […]

What will become of our children if we do not act now article

What will become of our children if we do not act now?

Author: Jonathan Evans, CEO, Discovery In a matter of weeks, our next tranche of graduates leave university for the last time with, what should be, the excited anticipation of entering the workforce and starting their careers, but this year it is very different.  If the last few weeks have taught us anything it is to expect the […]