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The STEM Shift

The STEM Shift
A Guide for School Leaders

May 2015 | 192 pages | Corwin

All you need to make the shift to STEM a reality! 

Now more than ever, educational leaders are encouraged to implement STEM as the foundation for preparing students with the 21st century skills required for college and career readiness. This resource makes the process of shifting to a comprehensive, integrated STEM school or district within reach!  

Invaluable case studies featuring current STEM pioneers from across the country model how successful, STEM-centered learning takes place. You’ll find process-specific best practices and strategies to help you:

  • Understand, create, and lead the STEM change process
  • Transform existing school programs
  • Prepare the school community for STEM and plan for STEM integration
  • Integrate 21st Century Skills, the arts, and humanities
  • Create essential partnerships with business and higher education

Includes step-by-step checklists and visual mapping guides for successfully navigating the STEM change process. Use this groundbreaking resource to systematically implement coherent and integrated STEM instruction that transforms learning and prepares students for the global economy! 

Video and web content also available at

"Finally! A great book that clearly explains what STEM education is, why we need it, and how to do it well. A must-read for all educators, parents, and policymakers."

Tony Wagner, author of The Global Achievement Gap and Creating Innovators

"Reading Jill and Ann's column in Education Week has been a critical part of my weekly reading since they've begun writing it. I've learned a lot from those short snippets, and now it's exciting to see their expanded thoughts in The Stem Shift. You can't go wrong by reading anything they write!"

Larry Ferlazzo, High school teacher and Ed Week columnist

Part I. Why STEM?
Chapter 1. The Tipping Point
Chapter 2. The 21st Century Learning Environment
Chapter 3. Clearing the Path
Chapter 4. The Achievement Gap
Chapter 5. Special Populations
Part II. Shifting
Chapter 6. The Shift Begins Within a Leader
Chapter 7. Entering the STEM Shift
Chapter 8. Planning the Shift
Chapter 9. STEM Curriculum Shifting
Chapter 10. Developing Capacity: STEM-Centric Professional Development
Chapter 11. Time for STEM
Chapter 12. STEM Collaborations and Trust
Chapter 13. A Call to Action
Appendix: A Checklist for Evaluating the Quality of the Planning Process
Access links to video and web content at

"Finally! A great book that clearly explains what STEM education is, why we need it, and how to do it well. A must-read for all educators, parents, and policymakers."

Tony Wagner, author of The Global Achievement Gap and Creating Innovators

"The STEM Shift provides an excellent overview for a school or district contemplating a move to a STEM learning approach.  The authors make a strong case for engaging in a STEM shift and then step through the planning and change processes called for, with special attention to building collaboration and trust.  A real strength of the book is the inclusion of real cases and voices from the field where this shift is happening.  The inclusion of successful programs and perspectives gives the reader confidence that engaging is a STEM shift is a real possibility for their organization."

Peter Brouwer, Dean, School of Education & Professional Studies and Graduate Studies
Professor, Secondary Mathematics Education, SUNY Potsdam

"The authors provide examples from real leaders across the country who have transformed their school to increase STEM instruction. This book will make readers think about ways to revolutionize schools by embracing the critical importance of STEM education."

Lisa Dieker, Professor and Lockheed Martin Eminent Scholar Chair
University of Central Florida

"Myers and Berkowicz have done a masterful job of articulating the current and future need for all to engage in conversations about STEM. They outline the importance of using inclusive, collaborative, and innovative engaged learning pedagogies and strategies for all teachers and students. Their final call to action chapter is powerful. I would highly recommend this book to anyone!"

Susan R. Madsen, Orin R. Woodbury Professor of Leadership & Ethics
Utah Valley University

"This insightful book casts light on the important issue of teaching STEM in a coherent and integrated way. The strategies presented go beyond curricula in each discipline to focus on four design principles: subject integration, project based learning, relevancy, and structural flexibility. This is an important, useful resource for anyone interested in STEM."


Chris Dede, Wirth Professor in Learning Technologies
Harvard University

"The STEM Shift is a much needed book for K-20 educational institutions looking to move from good to great. It highlights the importance of why we need intentional learning environments that drive innovation and collaboration."

Brad Currie, Lead Learner, Co-founder of #Satchat, ASCD Emerging Leader, Author of All Hands on Deck: Tools for Connecting Educators, Parents, and Communities

"Want to know the 4 most important words for 21st century learning? Authors Meyers and Berkowicz reveal that Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathare the 4 words that will unlock your students’ learning opportunities and open up a world of possibilities. This book is filled with examples that will help schools and districts become “STEM-centric” learning environments focused on identifying and solving problems. The STEM Shift will help you build bridges to the 21st century… and beyond!" 

Spike C. Cook, Author of Connected Leadership: It’s a Click Away

"The world is evolving at a feverous pace and this requires students to think and apply skills differently.  Myers and Berkowicz provide a compelling narrative loaded with examples from the field to provide educators and schools with the necessary foundation to provide students with the STEM skills and knowledge they need to succeed in careers while better supporting how they learn best."


Eric Sheninger

"Myers and Berkowicz expose the power of STEM and how it heightens the trajectory for student success. The STEM Shift is the definitive go-to guide for educators."

Leigh Byron, Founder and Head of School of STEM-to-Civics Charter School
Civics Charter School, Trenton, New Jersey

"In these days of initiative fatigue it is easy for leaders and teachers to bypass all that is good about our changing education system. If they do, they are missing great opportunities to advance. Unfortunately, STEM is sometimes seen as the new 4-letter word in initiatives and it shouldn’t be. In The Stem Shift, Jill Berkowicz and Ann Myers offer compelling reasons why all schools need to make the shift, and provide practical tools K-12 that will help schools get there." 

Peter DeWitt, Corwin Consultant and Author of Flipping Leadership Doesn’t Mean Reinventing the Wheel
Key features

This book can be used as both a practitioner resource and a training resource. It is a practical guide both for those trying to lead change as well as those implementing it. The book offers:

  • Field stories throughout. Examples of successful practices will be rich and precise, in order for the reader to get a picture of what the result can look like.
  • Sample processes that can be used to transform existing programs. Checklists and visual mapping of the processes will be included.
  • Tips on how to strategically plan for the shift to STEM.
  • Proven methods for preparing the school community for the shift to STEM.
  • Training suggestions for teachers and leaders.

For instructors

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ISBN: 9781483393179

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