NotesFAQContact Us
Collection
Advanced
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED546274
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 154
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2676-1701-9
ISSN: N/A
Digital Fabrication as an Instructional Technology for Supporting Upper Elementary and Middle School Science and Mathematics Education
Tillman, Daniel
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Virginia
The purpose of this three-paper manuscript dissertation was to study digital fabrication as an instructional technology for supporting elementary and middle school science and mathematics education. Article one analyzed the effects of digital fabrication activities that were designed to contextualize mathematics education at a summer mathematics enrichment program for upper elementary and middle school students. The primary dependent variables studied were the participants' knowledge of mathematics and science content, attitudes towards STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and STEM-related careers. Based upon the data collected, three results were presented as having justifiable supporting empirical evidence: (1) The digital fabrication activities, combined with the other mathematics activities at the enrichment program, resulted in non-significant overall gains in students' mathematics test scores and attitudes towards STEM. (2) The digital fabrication activities, combined with the other mathematics activities at the enrichment program, resulted in noteworthy gains on the "Probability & Statistics" questions. (3) Some students who did poorly on the scored paper test on mathematics and science content were nonetheless nominated by their teachers as demonstrating meritorious distinction during the digital fabrication activities (termed "Great Thinkers" by the 5th-grade teachers). Article two focused on how an instructional technology course featuring digital fabrication activities impacted (1) preservice elementary teachers' efficacy beliefs about teaching science, and (2) their attitudes and understanding of how to include instructional technology and digital fabrication activities into teaching science. The research design compared two sections of a teaching with technology course featuring digital fabrication activities to another section of the same course that utilized a media cycle framework (Bull & Bell, 2005) that did not feature digital fabrication activities. Based upon analysis of the data collected, two main results were determined to have justifiable supporting empirical evidence: (1) After the instructional technology course featuring digital fabrication activities, the participants reported statistically significant overall gains in science teaching efficacy beliefs. (2) When asked to describe their future plans for using three instructional technologies in their teaching, the top five most mentioned instructional technologies were: interactive whiteboards, video, class website, interactive online timeline, and digital fabrication. Of the participants that mentioned digital fabrication, the specific content areas mentioned were: history (four out of eight students mentioned), social studies (two out of eight), and science, math, engineering, and technology were each mentioned once. Article three assessed the impact of a series of lessons incorporating a NASA-themed transmedia book featuring digital fabrication activities on 5th-grade students who had been recognized as advanced in mathematics. The main dependent variables studied were the students' knowledge of science content from the Virginia Standards of Learning, attitude towards science, and student reported likes and dislikes about the project. Based upon analysis of the data collected, three main results were presented: (1) Students demonstrated significant positive gains in correct answers to questions on the topic of "Force, Matter, Energy, & Motion" from pretest to posttest. (2) There were nonsignificant gains reported by students on the attitude survey questions about attitude towards science, but this was chiefly because of one question that was significantly impacted in a negative direction. (3) Students articulated five main categories of likes and six main categories of dislikes of the experience, thereby providing insight into their own perception of some of the affordances and constraints of the educational activities. The five topics mentioned most often by students as self-reported likes about the experience included: hands-on activities including building, making, or designing (18 of 29 students mentioned; 62.1%), experimenting (9 of 29; 31.0%), presenting (9 of 29; 31.0%), drawing (6 of 29; 20.7%), and working in groups (6 of 29; 20.7%). The six topics most mentioned by students as self-reported dislikes about the experience included: taking tests (13 of 29 students mentioned; 44.8%), drawing (7 of 29; 24.1%), confusing / too fast (4 of 29; 13.8%), class discussions (4 of 29; 13.8%), reviewing (4 of 29; 13.8%), and attitude surveys (4 of 29; 13.8%). Cumulatively these three articles aim to contribute to the body of research studying the impact of digital fabrication as an instructional technology for supporting upper elementary and middle school science and mathematics education. This goal is described in greater detail in the "Manuscript Theme" section that begins on the next page. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml.]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Middle Schools; Junior High Schools; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Virginia