- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 28, 2010

COLUMBUS, OHIO (AP) - Policymakers and philanthropists have a new resource in the effort to increase the number of graduates in science, technology, engineering and math.

An online tool developed by the Business-Higher Education Forum with help from Ohio State University debuted Monday.

It allows people to see what combinations of policies might create the most interest in such degrees and careers, such as retaining more teachers or starting an elementary science club. More than 200 research variables are included in the model developed by Raytheon Co.

A national push is on to double the number of graduates in the areas by 2015.

The tool is available free. State-level data will be available for the first time for Texas, Arizona, California, Maine and Florida.