Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A Situative "Roadmap" for Synergy in Motivating Family STEM Engagement

By Dan Hickey
This is the third post about my collaboration with Iridescent Inc., a science education non-profit in LA. This new post describes how a key assumption in newer "situative" theories of motivation can resolve the tensions between prior empiricist and constructivist approaches. When combined with Design Based Research methods, this assumption can result in a coherent "roadmap" towards synergy across the three approaches. I contend that such a roadmap can help Iridescent and other informal STEM innovators find a route that takes them from current levels of engagement to much higher levels of engagement, both in terms of quantity and quality.

This post could use some work and some trimming but I need to get it up for my class and colleagues and get on to other things. Will try to clean it up soon

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Motivating STEM Engagement in Children, Families, and Communities

By Daniel Hickey

 This extended post is the second in a series of post about my work with non-profit STEM education start up called Iridescent.  In a previous post I describe their Curiosity Machine and an evaluation I carried out of a program designed to encourage families to complete Engineering Design Challenges on that website from home, after attending two-hour weekly evening workshops. In this post I explore the challenges that organizations like Iridescent and science museums face in attempting to motivate inquiry learning in informal contexts. I am also using this post as my weekly contribution to the graduate education class on motivation that I am currently teaching.

Friday, April 22, 2016

The Data of Learning: A Response to Martin Kurzweil's "Responsible Use of Student Data"

by James Willis

In mid-April, Stanford University hosted the "Learning Summit 2016: Inventing the Future of Higher Education." For those of us who study how the newer processes and protocols of using student data have ethical and legal consequences, one session in particular should be of interest: Marco Molinaro (UC Davis) moderated a panel on the "Responsible Use of Student Data for Individual and Organizational Improvement" which included speakers Martin Kurzweil (ITHAKA S+R), Mitchell Stevens (Stanford), and Kent Wada (UCLA). Kurzweil provided a recent blog posting summarizing the panel discussion, raising some important points.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Engaging Children and Families in Informal Science Learning

By Dan Hickey 
In this post, I share some things I have learned about the design of "semi-formal" science learning environments that I learned working with a remarkable science education non-profit in Los Angeles called Iridescent.

Friday, April 1, 2016

AERA and Open Digital Badges

by James Willis

The 2016 conference of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) will happen next week (April 8 - April 12) in Washington, D.C. There are some events related to open digital badges, so I'll discuss them briefly along with links to additional information. There is also an interesting disparity between the growing embrace of badges and the relatively little coverage at AERA.