During this Community of Practice we have encouraged all parts involved in Scientix to provide with their opinions on the past and their suggestions for the future of the project. Below, you will be able to find a brief summary on the key ideas mentioned:
Which are the best Scientix features?
One of the most valued aspects of Scientix is the resources repository. Most users have highlighted not only its wide scope, but its suitability as a browser. Indeed, the Scientix repository search tools allows to skip endless internet browsing and offers a way to quickly find resources by topic, country or date. Aside from the repository, the most cherished tool within the project is the Translation on Demand Service, which seems to be especially appealing to teachers and other STEM educators.
Another significant feature within the project have been the face-to-face events. These events have become key as they offer an unstructured, less formal space for different project stakeholders to engage in professional conversations. In fact, many of the Scientix Ambassadors have mentioned their involvement in specific projects and international STEM competitions as a consequence of their participation in these Scientix informal events.
Last, most Scientix friends see the project as a tool that provides with lifelong professional learning and personal development. In that sense, its members have surely acquired new skills, not just in the use of new technologies and innovative software but also to improve everyday skills.
Which are the main benefits of being involved in Scientix?
The possibility of entering the Scientix Community is one of the fundamental benefits that has attracted STEM professionals to get involved in Scientix. Not only because of the potential to become acquainted with like-minded peers (some of whom they wouldn’t normally be in contact with), but also as it entails a direct access to a very active international STEM education community.
In fact, most members of the Scientix community agree that being a part of it has proven to broaden their horizons, enable them to share innovative ideas and get a better glimpse of the latest news and trends in science education around Europe. Furthermore, the Scientix Community has frequently been mentioned as of utterly importance for those countries with a limited international scope in terms of education and, in individual terms, as a way to earn recognition as a professional which, in turn, facilitates the entry in STEM international events.
All in all, Scientix entails an excellent opportunity for everyone to be better connected with one another. While Scientix produces a great variety of content, one of its primary focus is still that of improving the quality of STEM education, as its main aim is not to "invent the wheel" all over again but to be a channel to enable a constant flow of information.
What Scientix areas could be improved?
The principal demand in regard to the Scientix portal is still related to the language barrier. While the navigation is available in the 8 most spoken EU languages, there is a widespread request to expand the interface to the official languages of those countries where STEM professionals are still not proficient in English.
Along these lines, another common demand is than of strengthening, in any way possible, the two main Scientix tools, namely the Resources Repository and the Translation on Demand service. In fact, in terms of content, the volume and variety of the Scientix different resources has been celebrated. Nevertheless, more attention could be placed in specific areas such as lesson plans and resources primarily addressed to primary education.
It has also been noted that one of the main areas to work on and further develop is the relation between different Scientix stakeholders in order to facilitate the accomplishment of project goals and become more efficient as a community. Additionally, a common concern perceived across the Scientix community members is linked to their dissemination activities. Even though the projects’ national penetration has proven successful during this Scientix edition, there is a common feeling that some project areas could be further promoted.
All in all, Scientix has definitely become a sustainable way to improve STEM dissemination around Europe as its community keeps growing bigger and stronger thanks to the efforts of all parties involved.