Posts from the ‘news’ category

TSG Presents at Cyberlearning 2017

Cyberlearning 2017 group photo

Cyberlearning 2017 group photo

Denise Nacu and Jennifer Baltes travelled to Arlington, VA on April 14, 2017 to present research from the TSG Lab and the Digital Youth Network at the Cyberlearning 2017 Poster Gallery Walk.

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Sheena Erete and Denise Nacu at CSCW 2017

Workshop on designing for underserved communities at CSCW 2017

Sheena Erete and Denise Nacu co-organized a workshop titled Reflection on Design Methods for Underserved Communities at Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing (CSCW) 2017 from February 25 – March 1, 2017. They worked alongside Aarti Israni, Tawanna Dillahunt from the University of Michigan, Roxana Galusca from Sassafras Tech Collective, and Phoebe Sengers from Cornell University.

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NSF STEM for All Video Showcase 2016

Using Data Visualizations to Empower Informal STEM Educators from on Vimeo.

Caitlin Martin, Elaina Boytor, Denise Nacu, Jim Sandherr submitted this video to the National Science Foundation STEM for All 2016 Video Showcase in May 2016.

Educators working in informal learning spaces must attend to learning goals without the structures provided by a formal learning institution. While the need for STEM learning opportunities in informal environments is increasingly apparent, educators and mentors in these spaces often do not have STEM content specialization or expertise. To address these challenges, as part of work led by PIs Nichole Pinkard and Denise Nacu, we are co-designing data visualization dashboards with mentors in an informal, blended learning environment.

The Digital Youth Divas (DYD) program is designed to engage girls in urban Chicago, especially those from underserved communities, with computational circuitry and programming through fabrication and design. DYD, run by the Digital Youth Network, incorporates project-based learning and an online platform. Five program mentors engage with the girls in the face-to-face classroom each week and two mentors are responsible for online assessment of computational projects submitted to the online space.

In this video we share educator data dashboards that pull live data from the online DYD platform, displaying metrics to help mentors manage their blended-learning spaces and support their young STEM learners. We focus on sociotechnical dimensions, including platform features and technical capabilities that support mentorship in informal STEM communities alongside authentic DYD mentors practices, intentions, and challenges. Together, researchers, designers, and practitioners are determining which metrics are useful in this context, how information should be displayed in order to be most effective, and how mentors use the data to support individual girls in their STEM learning trajectories, and build community engagement and success across the cohort.

Link to NSF Video Showcase website.


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Nacu and Raicu Awarded CDM Collaborative Research and Creative Activity Grant

August 24, 2015

Prof. Denise Nacu (School of Design) and Prof. Daniela Raicu (School of Computing) were recently awarded a CDM Collaborative Research and Creative Activity Grant for their project, "Using Automated Log Coding and Data Mining to Understand Teaching and Learning." The one-year grant will support work bringing together expertise in the design of online social learning networks with expertise in data mining and visualization in order to advance the emerging area of learning analytics. The purpose of this grant is to support research and creative activity involving multiple faculty members across the three schools who are engaged in multidisciplinary investigation of research problems or creative activities. 


Poster presentations at the RESPECT 2015 conference

Poster presentations at the RESPECT 2015 conference

Denise Nacu and Caitlin Martin travelled to Charlotte, NC on August 14, 2015 to represent research from the TSG Lab and the Digital Youth Network at the recent RESPECT (Research on Equity and Sustained Participation in Engineering, Computing, and Technology) 2015 conference.

Research presented:

  • Denise Nacu, Caitlin Martin, Nichole Pinkard and Jim Sandherr. Encouraging Online Contributions in Underrepresented Populations. (Short paper) Download paper
  • Caitlin K. Martin, Sheena Erete and Nichole Pinkard. Developing Focused Recruitment Strategies to Engage Youth in Informal Opportunities. (Poster) Download poster
  • Sheena Erete, Caitlin K. Martin and Nichole Pinkard. Employing narratives to trigger interest in computational activities with inner-city girls. (Poster) Download poster | Download paper
  • Ugochi Acholonu, Nichole Pinkard, Katie Pingrey and Brandon Bell. Uncovering Barriers to Participation Through Mapping Citywide Computing Opportunities: What do we mean by access? (Poster)