In 2017 we ran seven zones. Three I’m an Engineer zones in February–March (Energy, Health, and Space), and four I’m a Scientist zones in November (Diagnosis, Energy, Food, and Fluorine).
Our key findings were:
- We have improved on engagement rates in IAS since previous years. With more schools and students registering than the historic average (average of 12 schools and 384 students per zone), additionally the percentage of students actively participating in ASK, CHAT, VOTE, or leaving a comment is up to 90%. This has led to more questions being asked and answered than the historic averages. The percentage of active students in IAE however, has dropped to 80% with fewer questions in ASK, or lines of live CHAT.
- We have been successful in using online engagement to reach students who are normally under-served by the sector. In total, 1,111 students from target schools (DEIS, or in an SFI target county) actively participated in the events; 54% of the active participants.
- Taking part improves attitudes of scientists and engineers to public engagement. The experience made them more confident in communicating their work, and 96% of respondents felt that they’d like to take part in more public engagement.
- Taking part leaves most students feeling more positive about working in a STEM career. However, for a proportion of those initially not likely to consider a STEM career, the event confirms their decision.
Read the report here: I’m a Scientist & I’m an Engineer Ireland 2017: Evaluation Report (PDF)