A project of the Afterschool Alliance.

The Impact of Afterschool STEM: Techbridge After-School

Year Published: 2016

Techbridge offers afterschool and summer programs with hands-on projects and career exploration to inspire girls in STEM. In this selection of evaluation data from the 2012-2013 school year, participants demonstrated gains along three major categories of youth outcomes—interest in STEM, capacity to engage in STEM, and finding value in STEM.

Program Name: Techbridge

Program Description: Techbridge offers afterschool and summer programs with hands-on projects and career exploration to inspire girls in STEM. Curricula are developed with girls in mind, and designed to spark and sustain an interest in these fields as well as to make a connection with STEM careers. Career exploration is facilitated through visits from STEM role models and field trips to local engineering and technology companies.

Scope of the Evaluation: Local

Program Type: Afterschool

Location: Bay Area, CA

Community Type: Urban

Grade level: Elementary School, Middle School, High School

Program Demographics: 100 percent girls, 42 percent Hispanic/ Latino, 30 percent Asian-American/Pacific Islander, 10 percent African-American, 8 percent Caucasian, 2 percent Native American, 8 percent other. 94 percent of school partners receive Title I funding; 75 percent of students are eligible for free or reduced price lunch; 40 percent limited English proficient.

Program Website: http://www.techbridgegirls.org/

Evaluator: Rebecca Ancheta, City College of San Francisco

Evaluation Methods: Evaluation methods include pre- and post- surveys, focus groups with girls, teachers, and families, and program observations and coaching. Surveys examine technical and scientific ability, career awareness, aspirations, teamwork and adult influence. Comparison groups are utilized to evaluate outcomes with groups not participating in Techbridge. In addition, an observation rubric is used to ensure fidelity of implementation and identify areas for program improvement.

Evaluation Type: Non-experimental

Below is a selection of evaluation data reported by the program around three major categories of youth outcomes—interest in STEM, capacity to productively engage in STEM, and finding value in STEM. These outcomes are an excerpt from a 2016 Afterschool Alliance paper, "The Impact of Afterschool STEM: Examples from the Field."

Interest: I like to do this
  • After participation in Techbridge, 80 percent of girls planned to pursue additional STEM learning opportunities by taking advanced math and/ or science classes.
  • 85 percent of girls reported they find engineering more interesting and 83 percent said they find science more interesting after participating.

Capacity: I can do this

  • Girls gain real STEM skills—93.5 percent said they know more about how things work, like circuits and simple machines and 92 percent said they feel more confident using technology.
  • Participants demonstrate persistence in addressing challenges—95 percent of girls say they understand it can take many tries to solve a problem and 81 percent said they are better at problem-solving.
  • Girls build STEM-relevant life skills—70 percent said they are more comfortable speaking in front of a group of people and 97 percent believe teamwork is good for solving problems.

Value: This is important to me

  • Techbridge provides extensive opportunities to engage in career exploration. As a result, 94 percent of participants knew more about different kinds of jobs and 81 percent said they can see themselves working in technology, science or engineering.