Most Popular STEM Strand Courses List: All You Need to Know About Studying STEM Strand Courses

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Technological advances happen each day, so there is an increasing demand for subject matter experts with technological abilities around the world. STEM courses have become increasingly important for international students, and graduates with STEM degrees are highly sought-after across industries. The word "STEM" refers to the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.

STEM courses usually have a hands-on, interdisciplinary approach in higher education. These programs make students ready for a technologically advanced world that requires more computer scientists, engineers, researchers, and other experts from all STEM subjects. As a STEM student, you will gain skills that you can use across jobs, such as problem-solving, analysis, critical thinking, and research skills. Read on to learn more about STEM strand courses abroad. 

What is the STEM Strand?

The STEM Strand comprises the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, focusing on preparing students with essential skills for a rapidly evolving world. STEM Strand courses are designed to develop critical thinking, problem-solving, and innovation, preparing students for various high-demand careers.

STEM majors attract people from diverse backgrounds with diverse interests, whether or not they plan on entering highly technical fields. Why? STEM courses usually involve experiential learning (EL) opportunities, projects, and lab sessions. During a STEM course, you can also benefit from an assignment or a project that lets you explore and use your existing problem-solving expertise in the real world.

For instance, STEM students from top universities in the US can participate in a cybersecurity competition such as the National Cyber League and learn white-hat hacking techniques. Irrespective of how one performs in the competition, they could practise white-hat hacking using authentic technology, think deeply about what they learn, and have the kind of experience that adds to their resume.

Top STEM Strand Courses & Subjects List

One of the questions that international students often ask is this: What are the courses under STEM strand? Here is a short STEM courses list for STEM majors (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). But remember, the options to choose from in the academic world are much more.

Science:

STEM Strand courses in Science includes core disciplines such as Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. The primary goal of these courses is to develop critical thinking skills and a deep understanding of the natural world, establishing a solid base for future scientific pursuits.

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Biochemistry
  • Environmental Science
  • Astronomy
  • Paleontology

Technology:

Technology courses within the STEM Strand provides students with an introduction to the most recent developments and practical uses in areas such as Information Technology, Computer Science, and Digital Media. These courses are designed to improve technical skills and digital literacy, which are very crucial factor for success in today's professional technology world.

  • Computer Science
  • Information Technology
  • Web Development
  • Food technology
  • Biotechnology
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Science

Engineering:

Engineering courses focus on the fundamentals of design, building, and critical thinking. Students are taught to utilise mathematical and scientific principles to develop creative solutions in fields like Civil, Mechanical, and Electrical Engineering.

  • Civil Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical & Electronics Engineering
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Bio Medical Engineering

Mathematics

Mathematics courses in the STEM Strand enhance quantitative reasoning and analytical abilities. Encompassing a wide range of subjects from Algebra to Calculus, these courses establish the groundwork for comprehending intricate systems and resolving practical issues.

  • Calculus
  • Linear Algebra
  • Probability and Statistics
  • Econometrics and quantitative economics
  • Differential Equations
  • Statistics
  • Number Theory
  • Applied mathematics

Why Should You Pursue a STEM Degree?

Do you have a bachelor's degree in a field other than a STEM discipline? If so, you may have to take another bachelor's in STEM or a related master's degree for better employment prospects. Career advancers and career changers often seek promotions through additional qualifications on their CVs, such as master's degrees. For instance, during your master's program in cybersecurity, you may be able to learn the best ways to build enterprise security strategies for your organisation.

A STEM-related master's course can also offer the latest insights into research techniques, analyses, and programs that can aid you in creating efficiencies and adding business value to the job you occupy at present. Whatever your ultimate career objective is, a STEM graduate degree can help you stand out from the sea of applicants in the job market.

A Computer Science (CS) degree is among the best-known STEM majors. Cloud computing and big data contribute to increased demand for employees with strong skills in technology. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, information technology and computer-related jobs are likely to grow by 13% through 2030. Further, the median yearly salary for people with these STEM strand jobs was around $97,000 in 2021—twofold more than that for all other occupations.

Even when you are not keen on computer science, there are competitive salaries and ample opportunities up for grabs in other STEM-related majors for graduates. For instance, you may think about pursuing a degree in engineering. Every year, jobs in engineering command the lowest rates of unemployment and the highest average starting pay scales, as per a recent Bankrate study.

As per the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, people in STEM strand jobs experience lower unemployment rates and higher pay scales as compared to those in other positions.

Earning at least a bachelor's in STEM will not only improve your potential income but will also provide you with the skills that can attract recruiters across all industries. As per a recent survey from the US Census Bureau, 62% of people with STEM degrees in 2019 had jobs in other fields, like business, communications, and the social sciences.

How Much Does a STEM Degree Cost?

It depends mainly on whether you pursue it in the US or Europe and your specific area of study. For instance, an engineering master's degree in the US will most likely be costlier than a master's in another STEM field here. On the other hand, top colleges and universities in Europe charge between €1,000 and €45,000 per year for STEM qualifications. Several higher education providers in Europe also offer STEM courses for free. You may pursue a STEM degree from one such course, but remember that it may require you to live and study in a less popular study destination.

The main benefit of studying STEM strand courses in a popular destination like the US is that a STEM graduate can qualify for OPT (Optional Practical Training), which allows them to stay back and work for three more years following graduation. Studying in a relatively less popular destination means not being able to take advantage of such opportunities.

Top STEM Strand Jobs & Careers

There are many subdisciplines under the main STEM fields, so we will only be able to list out a few options here. Remember that there are many other options for you to pick from.

  • Web Developer: A web developer is someone who builds and maintains a website or websites.
  • Cybersecurity Analyst: A cybersecurity analyst focuses on protecting network and information security.
  • Game Developer: A game developer works in a team that deals with writing codes for video gaming software.
  • Actuary: An actuary applies statistics, financial theory, and mathematics to evaluate financial risk.
  • IT Auditor: An IT auditor analyses the network infrastructure of a company as well as conducts frequent compliance tests and risk assessments.

Best Countries to Study STEM Courses

The number of graduates enrolling in courses with STEM subjects is now higher than ever before. Therefore, many top universities around the world are including more STEM subjects in their curricula for international students. There is a significant gap between the number of open positions and the available graduate count in STEM fields around the globe. These are reasons enough for more Filipino students to pursue STEM degrees in study-abroad destinations, such as Australia, UK, Canada, USA, New Zealand and Ireland.

How Difficult is a STEM Course?

It is potentially challenging to be a STEM major, but do not let this keep you from pursuing a bachelor's or master's degree in this field. Consider picking from an array of mathematics, foundational science, and computer science courses. You will have to apply problem-solving, critical thinking, and data analysis skills to various experiments and projects during your STEM course.

How Long Does a STEM Master's Degree Take?

A full-time master's course in a STEM field can take one to two years, like all other master's programs. 

Why Do STEM Students Study Abroad?

The main reason is the return on investment. Doing STEM courses abroad may mean paying more than domestically, but it will also open up more career opportunities with higher earning potential. 

Is STEM a Course or Strand?

STEM is an umbrella term for various courses that come under the categories of Science, Engineering, Technology, and Mathematics. Open a STEM course list online, and you can see many different programs there. This means that the opportunities are endless in STEM fields.

Which is the Best STEM Course?

This depends, because what's best for you may not suit someone else. From a salary perspective, however, some STEM majors earn more than their other STEM counterparts. Examples include STEM majors who work in computer engineering, petroleum engineering, nuclear engineering, software development, and aerospace engineering.

If you wish to know where the best location is for STEM courses abroad, our counsellors are only a click away.

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