Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, including Computer Science
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, including Computer Science
Table of ContentsBackground
Department Offices that Support STEM
Open ED Funding and Other Opportunities
Examples of the Department's discretionary grants that can support STEM
Grant Applicant Resources
Call for Peer Reviewers
America's Strategy for STEM Education
Secretary's STEM Priority
U.S. Department of Education STEM Newsletter
Archived STEM Newsletters
STEM Education Briefings
Upcoming STEM Briefings
Archived STEM Briefings
Other Communications Tools
Other Federal Agency STEM Websites
Department STEM Contacts
In an ever-changing, increasingly complex world, it's more important than ever that our nation's youth are prepared to bring knowledge and skills to solve problems, make sense of information, and know how to gather and evaluate evidence to make decisions. These are the kinds of skills that students develop in science, technology, engineering, and math, including computer science—disciplines collectively known as STEM/CS. If we want a nation where our future leaders, neighbors, and workers can understand and solve some of the complex challenges of today and tomorrow, and to meet the demands of the dynamic and evolving workforce, building students' skills, content knowledge, and literacy in STEM fields is essential. We must also make sure that, no matter where children live, they have access to quality learning environments. A child's zip code should not determine their STEM literacy and educational options.
Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development (OPEPD)
Office of Career, Adult, and Technical Education (OCTAE)
Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE)
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS)
Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE)
Office of Non-Public Education (ONPE)
Office of Educational Technology (OET)
Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA)
Institute of Educational Sciences (IES)
White House Initiatives
Federal Student Aid (FSA)
Office of Communications and Outreach (OCO)
Education Innovation and Research (EIR): Mid-Phase & Expansion-Phase Grants
The Department just released two notices inviting applications (NIAs) for Mid-Phase and Expansion-Phase EIR projects. The EIR program provides funding to create, develop, implement, replicate, or take to scale entrepreneurial, evidence-based, field-initiated innovations to improve student achievement and attainment for high-need students; and rigorously evaluate such innovations. The EIR program is designed to generate and validate solutions to persistent education challenges and to support the expansion of those solutions to serve substantially larger numbers of students.
The FY 2021 Mid-Phase grant competition includes four absolute priorities, one competitive preference priority, and two invitational priorities:
- Absolute Priority 1--Moderate Evidence
- Absolute Priority 2--Field-Initiated Innovations—General
- Absolute Priority 3--Field-Initiated Innovations—Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics (STEM), which includes a Competitive Preference Priority that focuses on expanding opportunities in computer science for underserved populations
- Absolute Priority 4--Field-Initiated Innovations--Fostering Knowledge and Promoting the Development of Skills That Prepare Students to Be Informed, Thoughtful, and Productive Individuals and Citizens (social emotional learning or SEL)
- Invitational Priority 1--Innovative Approaches to Addressing the Impact of COVID-19 on Underserved Students and Educators
- Invitational Priority 2--Promoting Equity and Adequacy in Student Access to Educational Resources and Opportunities, including STEM courses and teacher certification.
The FY 2021 Expansion-Phase grant competition includes two absolute priorities and two invitational priorities. Absolute priorities require strong evidence and field-initiated innovations. Invitational Priority 1 seeks innovative approaches to addressing the impact of COVID-19 on underserved students and educators. Invitational Priority 2 seeks projects promoting equity and adequacy in access to educational resources and opportunities, such as those addressing the Department's Civil Rights Data Collection STEM Course Taking Report, 2018.
Total estimated funding for the EIR Early Phase (to be published later), Mid-Phase, and Expansion-Phase grants is $180 million. For Mid-Phase projects, the Department intends to award an estimated $32 million in funds for STEM projects and $32 million in funds for SEL projects. Applications are due July 7, 2021.
GEAR UP Funding
The Department issued a notice inviting application (NIA) for fiscal year 2021 (FY21) for the Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) Partnership Grants. GEAR UP is a discretionary grant designed to help eligible low-income students, including students with disabilities, in obtaining a secondary school diploma and prepare for postsecondary education. Activities must include postsecondary financial aid information, reduce remediation at the postsecondary level, and improve the number of students who obtain a secondary school diploma, complete applications, and enroll in postsecondary education. Activities may include mentoring; tutoring; dual or concurrent enrollment programs for students in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM); academic and career counseling; financial and economic literacy education; and exposure to college campuses. Applications are due June 28, 2021.
HSI-STEM Funding Opportunity
The Department issued a NIA for new awards for FY21 for the Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) STEM and Articulation Program. This competition specifically acknowledges the importance of student-centered programs that will increase the number of Hispanic and low-income students who graduate with degrees in STEM fields, as well as the need to promote support systems to ensure that community college students will continue to pursue STEM degrees once enrolled at a four-year institution. There is one absolute priority (increase STEM degrees), two competitive preference priorities (offer work-based learning and enhanced retention strategies) and one invitational priority (provide wrap-around services for students impacted by COVID-19). Applications are due June 14, 2021.
New to the Department's grantmaking process? The Department offers introductory resources about its grantmaking. The Department is always seeking experts in STEM education and other fields to serve as peer reviewers of grant applications. See sections below for more details.
Below are investments made in FY 2020:
- $3.6 million for the Alaska Native Education Equity Program
- $300,000 for Braille training (rehabilitation services demonstrations and training)
- $5.1 million for the College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP)
- $5 million for the Comprehensive Centers Program
- $185 million for the Education Innovation and Research Program (EIR) (awarded in early FY 2021)
- $124.7 million for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (Partnership Grants) (GEAR-UP)
- $23 million for Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need
- $25 million for Innovative Approaches to Literacy
- $5.7 million for the Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Program
- $900,000 for Migrant Education Consortium Incentive Grants (CIG)
- $29 million for the Native Hawaiian Education Program
- $12.6 million for the Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP)
- $1.4 million for the Perkins Innovation & Modernization Grant Program
- $300,000 for Strengthening Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISI)
- $2.3 million for Strengthening Native American Nontribal Serving Institutions (NASNTI)
- $1.5 million to provide special education programs in educational technology, media, and materials for students with disabilities via a cooperative agreement with the Center on Early STEM Learning for Young Children
- $9.3 million to provide special education programs educational technology, media, and materials for individuals with disabilities via Stepping Up
- $151.2 million for Federal TRIO Programs
- $73.7 million for Supporting Effective Educator Development (SEED)
- $49.4 million for the Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP)
- $28.2 million for Education Research Grants Programs
- $1.5 million for the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Program
- $4.3 million for the Small Business Innovation and Research (SBIR) Program
- $11.1 million for the Special Education Research Grants Program
- $6.3 million for Research Training in the Education Sciences
- $2.6 million for Research Training in Special Education
- STEM Investment Summary FY2018-2020
You can search for open discretionary grant opportunities or reach out to the Department's STEM contacts noted below. The Forecast of Funding Opportunities lists virtually all Department discretionary grant programs for FY 2021.
The Department published in spring 2020 two new grant applicant resources. These resources were developed to (1) provide an overview of the discretionary (or competitive) grants application process and (2) offer more details intended to be used by prospective applicants, including new potential grantees. These support one of the Secretary's new administrative priorities on New Potential Grantees that was published in March 2020. They can also be found under the "Other Grant Information" on the ED's Grants webpage.
The Department is seeking peer reviewers for our Fiscal Year 2021 competitive/discretionary grant season, including in the STEM/CS areas (among others). The Federal Register notice spotlights the specific needs of the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), the Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE), and the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). The How to Become a Peer Reviewer slide deck provides additional information and next steps.
The STEM Education Strategic Plan, Charting a Course for Success: America's Strategy for STEM Education, published in December 2018, sets out a federal strategy for the next five years based on a vision for a future where all Americans will have lifelong access to high-quality STEM education and the United States will be the global leader in STEM literacy, innovation, and employment. It represents an urgent call to action for a nationwide collaboration with learners, families, educators, communities, and employers—a "North Star" for the STEM community as it collectively charts a course for the Nation's success. The Department is an active participant in each of the interagency working groups focused on implementation of the Plan.
In December 2020, the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House issued the Progress Report on the Implementation of the Federal STEM Education Strategic Plan. This progress report describes ongoing efforts and implementation practices across the Federal Government as it works to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Strategic Plan. This report also compiles budget information from all Federal agencies that have investments in STEM education during Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. Additionally, this document is meant to fulfill the requirements under the America COMPETES Reauthorization of 2010 that the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) must transmit a report annually to Congress at the time of the President's budget request providing an update on the STEM Education Federal portfolio performance and an inventory of Federal STEM education investments. The 2019 Progress Report was issued in October 2019
STEM is a centerpiece of the Department's comprehensive education agenda. The STEM priority has been used across the Departments' discretionary grant programs to further the Department's mission, which is "to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access."
In February 2020, the Department created the U.S. Department of Education STEM Newsletter. Please go to our newsletter subscription page to sign-up.May 2021
The STEM Education Briefings are live-streamed, close-captioned and archived for your convenience.
June 18, 2021, 12:00-1:30 PM ET – Advanced Manufacturing: Industry of the Future, Register Here
May 4, 2021 – Summertime STEM (presentation slides [PDF, 18.3MB])
March 25, 2021 – Differing Abilities in STEM, featuring Dr. Temple Grandin (presentation slides [PDF, 13.7MB])
February 2021 – Inspiring STEM Interest (presentation slides [PDF, 3.7MB])
December 2020 – New Frontiers in K-12 Computer Science (presentation slides [PDF, 12.7MB])
November 2020 – Federal STEM Strategic Plan: 2 Years Later (presentation slides [PDF, 15.49MB]).
October 2020 – Invention Education (presentation slides [PDF, 13.13MB])
September 2020 – STEM Teacher Preparation (presentation slides [PDF, 3.5MB])
August 2020 – Cybersecurity Education (presentation slides [PDF, 10.5MB])
July 2020 – Early Math (presentation slides [PDF, 2.37MB])
June 2020 – Distance Learning
February 2020 – STEM After School
January 2020 – STEAM: Arts Supporting STEM
December 2019 – Family Engagement in STEM
November 2019 – The STEM Opportunity Index
October 2019 – Early Engineering Education and State Efforts
September 2019 – Recruiting and Retaining 100K STEM Teachers in 10 Years
July 2019 – What Do We Know about Computer Science Education?
Assisting Students Struggling with Mathematics: Intervention in the Elementary Grades
Designing and Delivering Career Pathways at Community Colleges
Learning in a Pandemic Webinar
Fall 2020 Back-to-School Success Stories
COVID-19 Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel
ESEA, IDEA, and Perkins Resources
College Scorecard ― updated again on 1/15/21
Exploring Career Options – FSA
Stackable Credentials that lead to careers
Cross-agency teacher resources
IES data and statistics, research and evaluation, and tools for educators
Out of School STEM Initiatives
The ED Games Expo "Goes Virtual" to Support Distance Learning
STEM Data Story — A Leak in the STEM Pipeline: Taking Algebra Early
CTE Data Story — Bridging the Skills Gap: Career and Technical Education in High School
Parent and Family Digital Learning Guide
Early Learning: STEM – Math Video
Keep Calm and Connect All Student OET Blog Series
K-12 Practitioners' Circle
STEM Innovation for Inclusion in Early Education (STEMI2E2) Center and OSEP's Early Learning Newsletter
A Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities
CTE Research Center
Civil Rights Data Collection
Department’s Data Strategy
The following are federal agencies that the Department collaborates with to support the aims of the STEM Education Strategic Plan (see above section for more details) and support the Department's stakeholders.
- Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and National Science and Technology Council (NSTC)
- STEM Education Advisory Panel
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Department of Defense (DOD)
- Department of Labor (DOL)
- Department of Energy (DOE)
- National Science Foundation (NSF) and NSF INCLUDES
- National Institutes of Health (NIH) (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
- National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) at National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST) (U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC))
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- Smithsonian Institute
- U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) (U.S. Department of the Interior)
- U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) (U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC))