Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics


The importance of STEM

Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) touches every aspect of our lives, from our smartphones to the technologies that enable us to explore the world around us and outer space. It also drives innovation in our fast-changing global economy. To succeed in this environment and for Queensland to continue to prosper into the future, our students need a strong foundation in STEM.

We need a reliable pipeline of specialist STEM skills; but we also need informed workers, users and consumers who have the curiosity and imagination to be part of the broader STEM economy. This must be underpinned by lifetime engagement for all Australians with STEM, beginning in childhood and constantly renewed as knowledge and technologies expand.

​​ (Office of the Chief Scientist STEM: Australia's Future, September 2014, p21)​

A strategy for STEM in Queensland state schools

A strategy for STEM in Queensland state schools (PDF, 659KB) document details the Queensland Government's plan for the direction of STEM education.

STEM hub

The STEM hub brings together information, resources and advice for students and parents wanting to learn more about STEM. Visit the hub to find out more about:

  • STEM subjects
  • STEM resources for students and parents
  • STEM careers and pathways and the wide-ranging opportunities that a STEM career can offer
  • STEM events, such as the Peter Doherty Awards and STEM Girl Power
  • why STEM is important to our future, plus much more.​

Premier's Coding Challenge

The Premier’s Coding Challenge is an annual statewide initiative for all Queensland students in Year 3 to Year 10. The Premier’s Coding Challenge aims to encourage an interest in STEM in Queensland students.

The Premier’s Coding Challenge offers great prizes and an excellent opportunity for students to create some interactive and innovative coding to raise awareness of digital wellbeing.

Robots and drones in Queensland State Schools

Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies provides opportunities for students to develop skills through coding and the use of robots and drones.

The Department of Education has developed advice and resources for schools to assist in the use of robots and drones in Australian Curriculum: Science Technology and Maths. The Queensland Drones Strategy encourages the use of drones in implementing the Australian Curriculum.

STEM Teacher Symposium resources

A collection of presentations, video recordings and professional readings is available to staff on the STEM Teacher Symposium page on the Learning Place website. These resources focus on evidence-based practice and how to best strengthen inquiry, design and innovation skills to empower our students.

STEM Girl Power Initiative

The annual STEM Girl Power Initiative is a 12-month program that encourages girls to participate in STEM by engaging in a range of exciting STEM experiences and inviting them to inspire other students, by being a STEM ambassador in their school and community.

The program begins with on online event, coinciding with the annual World Science Festival Brisbane before the STEM Girl Power Camp in Term 2.

School principals may nominate 1 Year 9 student to participate in the following year—when the student is in Year 10.

Throughout the 12-month program students explore STEM pathways, participate in a variety of innovative STEM workshops, engage with researchers and STEM professionals, and act as STEM ambassadors in their schools and local communities.

Visit the STEM Girl Power page or contact for more information.

STEM review

As part of its commitment to Advance Queensland, the Queensland Government has prepared a review of STEM education in Queensland state schools.

The review was comprised of 3 phases of activity between 2015–2018:

  • Phase 1: Interim review of STEM education in Queensland schools drawn from

    • a literature review of international best practice in STEM education conducted by Griffith University

    • a survey of Queensland state school principals.

  • Phase 2: Pilot of STEM hubs to facilitate partnerships between schools and industry by Queensland University of Technology (QUT).

  • Phase 3: Development and trial of the STEM Cluster Tool framework for schools.

The final report summarises the findings of the review, activities conducted by the department and recommended next steps including:

  • confirming the efficacy of evidence-based approaches the department is pursuing to strengthen STEM education in Queensland state schools

  • outlining the range of coordinated initiatives, tools and resources developed by the department to build teacher capability and lift student participation and achievement in STEM

  • describing how the STEM actions in the Advancing Education: An action plan for education in Queensland have been implemented, specifically, establishing STEM virtual academies, developing a STEM Girl Power Initiative, supporting schools with STEM Champions and increasing the participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in STEM

  • highlighting how initiatives in the #codingcounts supporting plan have maintained a focus on fast-tracking implementation of Australian Curriculum: Technologies, including coding and robotics, to prepare students for the jobs of the future.

Read the full review of STEM education in Queensland state schools 2015–2017 Final report 2018.

Last updated 19 June 2024