STEM is an acronym of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths and is used broadly to refer to the types of subjects that students should be concentrating on to fill the gap expected in these professions in the future. STEAM is the same except that Arts has been added.
The essential difference between STEM and STEAM learning is that the former focuses explicitly on scientific topics while the latter includes an emphasis on learning through inquiry and curiosity and by solving problems in a creative way. It attempts to use the insights of humanities subjects such as art, drama, music, languages and new media (among others) to inform scientific concepts and their practical applications.
The benefit of this approach is that students can learn creatively by individual inquiry and problem-solving to achieve results. This approach is seen as a key requirement for employees that are ‘future-ready’ in a rapidly changing work environment.