July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
Educational Research and Methods
Makerspace, a term coined in the early 2000s by MAKE Magazine, is an umbrella term for many organizations that share a common goal; to support creative self-efficacy. Makerspaces can be understood as the 21st-century evolution of libraries - communities allowing members with shared interests to collaborate on developing ideas while socializing the financial burden of equipment access and upkeep. A makerspace can look very different from place to place, with some being located in public spaces like libraries or classrooms. Others can be privately owned facilities, either open to the community or for-profit enterprises charging access fees. Assessing and benchmarking these spaces' capacity and capability can be difficult due to their wide variety of attributes. There is rapid worldwide growth and evolution of makerspaces that frequently outpaces research efforts resulting in a lack of comprehensive analysis.
Creating a comprehensive framework for assessment will enable makerspaces to utilize a common language for comparison on like terms, allowing for more streamlined collaborative research to assess capability, safety, social impact, and economic contribution. A thorough literature review was conducted on makerspaces. Numerous attributes of makerspaces and maker communities were then sorted into broader dimensions. These dimensions include assets, culture, influence, and sustainability of a makerspace. The authors propose numerous data streams that could be utilized to quantify these makerspace dimensions. This assessment framework will enable future researchers to look at holistic data and influencing factors, encouraging more structured investigations on the many impacts of makerspaces on their members and community. Makerspaces are an unrivaled tool in hands-on experiential learning, and by creating a common framework, research on educational impacts can be shared among previously disparate efforts.
Jariwala, A. S., & Greenfield, N., & Orton, E., & Banerjee, R. (2021, July), Design of a Comprehensive System to Benchmark Makerspaces Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. 10.18260/1-2--36916
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