To help more—and more diverse—students engage with science, the science capital teaching approach builds on good teaching practice. Its key distinction is an explicit focus on recognising and valuing students’ existing science capital, whilst also helping them to build new science capital.
The approach works within any science curriculum. It is not a new set of materials and it does not mean a dilution of science ideas and concepts. Instead, it is a reflective framework that involves making small tweaks to existing practice so as to re-orientate science lessons in ways that can better connect with the reality of students’ lives and experiences.
The concept of science capital is a way of encapsulating all the science-related knowledge, attitudes, experiences and social contacts that an individual may have.