[USC04] 42 USC 1862q: Informal STEM education
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42 USC 1862q: Informal STEM education Text contains those laws in effect on May 20, 2019

§1862q. Informal STEM education

(a) Grants

The Director of the National Science Foundation, through the Directorate for Education and Human Resources, shall continue to award competitive, merit-reviewed grants to support-

(1) research and development of innovative out-of-school STEM learning and emerging STEM learning environments in order to improve STEM learning outcomes and engagement in STEM;

(2) research that advances the field of informal STEM education; and

(3) a national partnership of institutions involved in informal STEM learning.

(b) Uses of funds

Activities supported by grants under this section may encompass a single STEM discipline, multiple STEM disciplines, or integrative STEM initiatives and shall include-

(1) research and development that improves our understanding of learning and engagement in informal environments, including the role of informal environments in broadening participation in STEM;

(2) design and testing of innovative STEM learning models, programs, and other resources for informal learning environments to improve STEM learning outcomes and increase engagement for K–12 students, K–12 teachers, and the general public, including design and testing of the scalability of models, programs, and other resources;

(3) fostering on-going partnerships between institutions involved in informal STEM learning, institutions of higher education, and education research centers; and

(4) developing, and making available informal STEM education activities and educational materials.

( Pub. L. 114–59, §3, Oct. 7, 2015, 129 Stat. 540 ; Pub. L. 114–329, title III, §311, Jan. 6, 2017, 130 Stat. 3013 .)


Section was enacted as part of the STEM Education Act of 2015, and not as part of the National Science Foundation Act of 1950 which comprises this chapter.


2017-Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 114–329, §311(a), added par. (3).

Subsec. (b)(3), (4). Pub. L. 114–329, §311(b), added pars. (3) and (4).