K–8 STEM Career Competencies: Developing Foundational Skills for the Future of Work


This framework identifies 10 foundational career competency areas correlated to characteristics of future work at the Human Technology Frontier and what thought leaders in the field believe successful workers in those environments need to know and be able to do. It is meant as a guide for teachers interested in helping their students develop the foundations of skills, knowledge, and abilities needed to be successful in life when they exit formal schooling. Many of the suggested competencies may already be included in the curriculum or pedagogy in K-8 classrooms. In those cases, this guide may simply help teachers connect what they are already doing to prepare their students for success in future work. It also suggests competencies and resources to help teachers make connections across disciplines.


Malyn-Smith, J., Juliuson, J., MacGillivray, S., Lee, I., & McCurdy-Kirlis, C. (2021). K–8 STEM Career Competencies: Developing Foundational Skills for the Future of Work. Education Development Center, Inc.


This material is based on work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. DRL-1312022 and DRL-1614697. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


Cover of the framework; children engaging in STEM Learning

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J. Malyn-Smith
J. Juliuson
S. MacGillivray
I. Lee
C. McCurdy-Kirlis
Education Development Center, Inc.
STEM Career Opportunities and Workforce Development
STEM Content and Standards
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