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Assessing the Effects of a Robotics Workshop with Draw-a-Robot Test

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Conference

2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Pre-college Engineering Education Division Technical Session 19

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education

Page Count

18

DOI

10.18260/1-2--34182

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/34182

Download Count

247

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Paper Authors

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Abhidipta Mallik New York University Tandon School of Engineering

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Abhidipta Mallik received his B.Tech. degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from the West Bengal University of Technology, Kolkata, India, and M.Tech. degree in Mechatronics from the Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, Shibpur, West Bengal, India. He has one year and ten months of research experience at the CSIR-CMERI, India. He is currently a Ph.D. student in Mechanical Engineering at NYU Tandon School of Engineering, Brooklyn, NY, where he is serving as a research assistant under an NSF-funded ITEST project.

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Pooneh Sabouri New York University Tandon School of Engineering

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Pooneh Sabouri received her Ph.D. in Teaching and Learning, focusing on science education at New York University. She has a master’s degree in mathematics education and statistics from The University of Texas at Austin and earned her bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Sharif University of Technology in Iran. Pooneh is interested in teacher learning and how to co-develop theoretical tools with teachers to inform and expand their teaching practices. She is a postdoctoral associate at Tandon School of Engineering at New York University, where she studies teachers' experiences as they learn about robotics, how they envision incorporating robotics in their curriculum and challenges that they face.

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Shramana Ghosh New York University Tandon School of Engineering

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Shramana Ghosh received her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from University of California, Irvine in 2017, her Masters in Industrial Engineering from Texas A&M University in 2013, and her Bachelors in Manufacturing Processes and Automation Engineering from University of Delhi in 2011.
She is currently working as a postdoctoral associate at the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department, NYU Tandon School of Engineering, NY, USA. In this role she supports and studies use of robotics in K-12 STEM education. Her other research interests include robotics, mechanical design, and biomechanics.

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Vikram Kapila New York University Tandon School of Engineering Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-5994-256X

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Vikram Kapila is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at NYU Tandon School of Engineering (NYU Tandon), where he directs a Mechatronics, Controls, and Robotics Laboratory, a Research Experience for Teachers Site in Mechatronics and Entrepreneurship, a DR K-12 research project, and an ITEST research project, all funded by NSF. He has held visiting positions with the Air Force Research Laboratories in Dayton, OH. His research interests include K-12 STEM education, mechatronics, robotics, and control system technology. Under a Research Experience for Teachers Site, a DR K-12 project, and GK-12 Fellows programs, funded by NSF, and the Central Brooklyn STEM Initiative (CBSI), funded by six philanthropic foundations, he has conducted significant K-12 education, training, mentoring, and outreach activities to integrate engineering concepts in science classrooms and labs of dozens of New York City public schools. He received NYU Tandon’s 2002, 2008, 2011, and 2014 Jacobs Excellence in Education Award, 2002 Jacobs Innovation Grant, 2003 Distinguished Teacher Award, and 2012 Inaugural Distinguished Award for Excellence in the category Inspiration through Leadership. Moreover, he is a recipient of 2014-2015 University Distinguished Teaching Award at NYU. His scholarly activities have included 3 edited books, 9 chapters in edited books, 1 book review, 63 journal articles, and 164 conference papers. He has mentored 1 B.S., 40 M.S., and 5 Ph.D. thesis students; 64 undergraduate research students and 11 undergraduate senior design project teams; over 500 K-12 teachers and 130 high school student researchers; and 18 undergraduate GK-12 Fellows and 59 graduate GK-12 Fellows. Moreover, he directs K-12 education, training, mentoring, and outreach programs that enrich the STEM education of over 1,000 students annually.

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Abstract

Our modern technological age is witnessing the pervasive impact of technology on healthcare, transportation, education, commerce, and entertainment. Thus, there is great demand for a well-prepared STEM workforce. To address this need for a tech-savvy workforce, government, corporate, and education sectors are all focused on creating and offering innovative teaching, learning, and training opportunities for students at all levels. In this vein, our team has designed and conducted a summer robotics workshop to increase the robotics knowledge and technical and entrepreneurial skills of participants. This workshop was for a duration of four weeks with two weeks devoted to guided training and two weeks devoted to collaborative robotic projects. In summer 2019, the workshop was attended by 10 teachers and 22 students from 8 inner-city high schools. Each teacher was requested to bring two students. The objective of the workshop was to introduce participants to fundamental principles of robotics as well as hands-on experiences in designing and creating prototype robotics solutions for real-world problems. The expectation was that after attending the workshop the teachers will incorporate similar robotics activities in their curriculum at schools and their students would assist them in classroom implementations.

As robots are becoming increasingly common in workplaces (e.g., factories, warehouses, hospitals, etc.) and homes (e.g., Roombas), everyone has some views about what robots are and what they can do. Perceptions of robots held by people may be stereotypical, with many misconceptions arising from movies, science fiction, and other media. In this study, we were interested to know workshop participants’ initial views about robots and their use and if and how their initial perceptions changed by the end of the workshop. To gather evidence to help answer these questions, we conducted a “draw a robot test”.

In this test, the participants were asked to draw any robot in its environment and label its different parts. All responses were anonymous, however to allow matching of pre-/post-test responses from same respondents the participants labeled their drawings with unique self-assigned numeric codes. The test was held at the beginning of the workshop (pretest) and on the last day (posttest). We analyzed the types of the robots that participants drew and compared the labels that they used to describe the robots in the pre and posttests. Our preliminary findings show that, in both the pre and posttest, the teachers drew different types of robot such as humanoid, wheeled mobile, fixed base, insect like, etc. Moreover, their labels indicated that the robots would perform different types of function such as cleaning, delivery, construction, etc. Comparison of the pre and posttest show that teachers used more technical terms such as microcontroller, servos, gears, color sensor, ultrasonic sensor, etc., to characterize their robots. Specifically, eight teachers mentioned many relevant technical terms in their robot drawings in the posttest. Moreover, seven teachers in the posttest drew wheeled robots as compared to four teachers who drew wheeled robots in the pretest. We believe that these changes may have resulted from teachers’ experiences in building and working with wheeled manipulator robots. Further investigations are needed to determine how these changes in teachers’ understanding of robots may influence their approaches for introducing and teaching about robotics.

Mallik, A., & Sabouri, P., & Ghosh, S., & Kapila, V. (2020, June), Assessing the Effects of a Robotics Workshop with Draw-a-Robot Test Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34182

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