Smart Makerspaces is an exploratory learning and design research focused on using IoT devices and digital tools to support and foster documentation.

Timeline
Ongoing - 1.5 Years
Discipline
Learning Sciences
Qualitative Data Analysis
User Research
For
CMU's IDEATE program
Alphalab Gear's Startable Youth Program
With
PI: Marti Louw and Daragh Bryne

For over a year, I have been a part of the Learning Media Design Center in the Human-Computer Interaction Institute, where I worked under Principle Investigators Marti Louw and Daragh Byrne for their NSF Project: Smart Spaces for Making.

To summarize our research, we focused on the practice of documentation as something that plays a critical role in scaffolding reflective learning in the context of informal, makerspace education. Much of our research questions stem from our understanding of how documentation is integral to the learning experience especially for young individuals, so how can we use IoT devices, design interventions, and other technologies to help support this practice?

Being on this research team for over a year, I have worked with various interdisciplinary teams of researchers, designers, and developers as a way to bridge learning science and design. I worked on three main projects based on the research team's needs for various site partners like Quaker Valley High School, CMU's IDEATE program, and Alphalab Gear's Startable Youth program.

Click to Jump to Project Section

01. Framework Approach
02. Projects

Project 01: Poster Kit for Quaker Valley High School's Self-Directed learning Curriculum
Project 02: Creativity & Cognition 2021 Paper Submission on Probing Documentation Practices
Project 03: Qualitative Analysis for Concept Maps on Documentation for Paper Writing

Framework Approach
Our team worked with this framework approach to focus on Design Embodiment and Mediated Learning Processes as a way to look for implications of embedding design + technology for future product development.

Project 01: Poster Kit for Quaker Valley High School's Self-Directed learning Curriculum

Timeline
Ongoing - 3 months of current work
Discipline
Learning Sciences
Design System
Printing and Production
For
Quaker Valley High School
With
Miranda Luong

Quaker Valley High School, one of our site partners, has developed a Self-Directed Learning curriculum that is project-based and intended to offer students a flexible, authentic, and interest-driven learning experience. It allows them to build a sense of self-efficacy and agency as well as their ability to reflect upon and articulate their skills-building process (documenting evidence of their learning).

Working alongside another designer, Miranda Luong, we were tasked to create a design intervention that would structure the usage and flow of this curriculum. Especially as students transition towards remote learning instruction and formats, new difficulties arrive with how the current curriculum is structured for normal, non-pandemic times.

The full documentation process for the kit can be seen here!

Project 02: Creativity & Cognition 2021 Paper Submission on Probing Documentation Practices

Timeline
Ongoing - 8 months of current work
Discipline
Learning Sciences
Q
Literature Review
For
Creativity & Cognition 2021 Conference Paper Submission
With
Miso Demko

Over the summer, I worked as a research assistant intern for the Human-Computer Interaction Institute where I helped design probe artifacts that help pull insights that revealed how students of creative project and maker-based backgrounds are navigating through learning and documentation as they transition to remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This was initially tested with 6 students with varying backgrounds over the summer as seen above, and their feedback allowed the probes to be revised and improved for a formal study to be conducted during the semester.

Here are the different probe activity instructions along with the worksheets that were provided. Although the instruction text is a little heavy, each participant had the opportunity to freely explore and work on the probes in whatever format and direction they felt comfortable in.

After conducting the full study, here is an overview of the results of 15 students from interdisciplinary, creative backgrounds at Carnegie Mellon University. Below are close-up of some activity results for each of the different probes that were given to the students.


Activity 1: Workspace Photo
Reflect on what documentation means to you and take a photo of your workspace. After, annotate the photo to give context as to why certain things are situated where they are and also how they aid your documentation practice.

Activity 2: Concept Mapping
Create a concept map around the term “documentation,” and write all the ideas and thoughts you have surrounding the topic.

Activity 3: Journey Diagramming
Diagram your workflow and process from the beginning to end of a project that you’ve worked on. Add additional information to give detail as to how documentation was part of that project’s journey. Then, note the frictions and missed opportunities that occurred in the process.

Activity 4: Listing & Rating
Diagram your workflow and process from the beginning to end of a project that you’ve worked on. Add additional information to give detail as to how documentation was part of that project’s journey. Then, note the frictions and missed opportunities that occurred in the process.

At the moment, the results of this study is going under analysis to be written up as a pictorial submission to the 2021 conference, Creativity & Cognition!

Project 03. Qualitative Coding Analysis for Concepts Maps around the Topic of Documentation

Timeline
Ongoing - 6 months of current work
Discipline
Learning Sciences
Qualitative Analysis
Literature Review
For
Undecided Venue for Paper Writing
With
Marti Louw
Maggie Hannan

Over the half year, I have been working closely with Marti Louw and Maggie Hannan on qualitatively coding a set of concept maps that come from various sites like IDEATE, Quaker Valley, Startable, and Community Forge Many of these maps come from educators or people with backgrounds in learning and education, in which we asked they to create maps around what their perceptions of documentation are.

Initially, we were organzing the concepts in Excel based on the concepts nodel levels.

From this, we also began to look at the data based on the count/frequency of concept apperance and what exactly are the concepts that everyone is thinking about.

Now, we are in the process of coding the maps into categories to understand the ideas and concepts that are showing up, and we have been able to finally come down with a coding scheme that allows us to be able to accurately code these different items into a collection of ideas. With this, we are planning to write a paper for a submission (conference not decided yet)

Thank you for reading! 🌀🌀🌀

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