SCOPE is a major Danish study that aims to map how children and young people’s aspiration towards science and technology starts and is maintained. The study will also identify barriers that prevent children and young people from becoming engaged in science and technology subjects.
“With SCOPE, we aim to broadly understand how children and young people relate to science. We will examine how children and young people become knowledgeable, well-informed and committed citizens who can relate to how science influences the development of society. We will investigate educational choices and career paths, the influence of parents and the social networks of children and young people – all the factors that comprise science capital,” says Mette Slottved, VIVE – the Danish Center for Social Science Research, one of several organizations behind the study.
The researchers will obtain data through the study that will provide insight into children and young people’s interest in science and technology. The data can also be used to monitor whether various initiatives in this field result in the desired effect in improving children and young people’s motivation to learn more about these subjects. For example, the researchers can investigate how society can reduce the gap in interest in science between children and young people from resource-rich and resource-poor families.
The researchers will examine the theme from various angles and using various methods from the didactics of science, sociological theory, econometrics, survey methods and quantitative methods. Among many parameters, the study will examine children and young people’s educational and career choices and the importance of social networks, schools and parents on children’s interest in science and technology.
The study will last 10 years and is being carried out by a consortium comprising VIVE – the Danish Center for Social Science Research and the Department of Science Education of the University of Copenhagen. The teacher education programmes at University College Copenhagen and VIA University College and ASTRA – the National Center for Learning in Science, Technology and Health in Denmark are also participating in SCOPE.