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The Step Up project was one of five projects funded under the Enhancing the Training of Mathematics and Science Teachers (ETMST) Programme, in response to the 2012 report by former Australian Chief Scientist, Professor Ian Chubb: Mathematics, Engineering and Science in the National Interest.

Step Up sought to transform the nature and delivery of pre-service secondary mathematics and science teaching in Queensland. Through effecting step changes in courses, partnerships, academic practice and student recruitment, Step Up’s outcomes include:

  1. A significant increase in the number of students specialising in secondary mathematics and science teaching in areas of need.
  2. Collaborative curriculum design and delivery, formalised in and or explicitly aligned with course structures and processes.
  3. A learning community of emerging mathematics and science teachers actively engaged in an inter-disciplinary, professional community of practice.
  4. Strong mathematics/science knowledge and pedagogy amongst secondary mathematics and science teacher education students and graduates.
  5. Partnerships that provide mechanisms for sustained resourcing and implementation.

Working toward these outcomes, the Step Up project focused on five major priorities through collaborative model approaches tested in a range of contexts to achieve scalability and transferability.


STEM Studio

A unique ‘third space’ that brings together key participants from higher education (teacher educators, scientists and pre-service teachers) and high schools (principals, practising teachers and school students) to change the nature and delivery of STEM education.



Student Engagement

Connecting pre-service teachers to a range of Step Up co-curricular initiatives including learning, professional development and networking opportunities; supporting a range of Step Up outcomes and helping to develop a support network amongst emerging STEM teachers who are implementing new models/approaches.



Implementation of a Science and Mathematics Education minor to provide an authentic introduction and pathway into secondary teaching for students in undergraduate STEM courses – encouraging students with a passion for science to consider teaching as a career of choice.


Engaging Students in Scientific Inquiry

Self-paced professional learning resources including video, practical and research resources, designed to help pre-service teachers understand and teach science based on contemporary scientific research practice.



An online platform to support pre-service teachers in the transition through practicum and into early career.


Pedagogy on Demand

A suite of pedagogical resources on topics of interest to secondary students that will support pre-service secondary teachers to design and implement engaging worthwhile STEM activities.