June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Computers in Education
23.677.1 - 23.677.16
I-3 Experience: Expanding Research and Design Opportunities for Under- represented High School StudentsAbstractThis paper will describe a novel approach to engaging under-represented high school students inresearch and design opportunities at a public university. The I-3 (pronounced “I three”)Experience programs aim to engage 9th-12th grade African American, Latino, and femalestudents in research and prototyping activities to increase and sustain their interest in computerscience. Since Spring 2011, 60 students have enrolled in the I-3 Experience programs. Ourprogram has specifically targeted female and underrepresented students (African American andLatino/as): 93% of program participants are female and underrepresented students; 61% of ourstudents participated in free and reduced lunch programs. The program has a 90% retention rate.The I-3 Experience is a series of computing after-school and summer-enrichment programsdesigned for students who are interested in exploring computing but lack courses at their schoolor have completed all the cs courses and desire to expand their computing skills. The I-3Experience consists of three program phases: Imagine, Investigate, and Innovate. Each of theseprogram phases engages students in computational thinking and provides opportunities andresources for them to bring their ideas to life through the design of new applications and devices.The I-3 Experience began with the Imagine program, which focused on inspiring students to seecomputing in the world around them. Students were introduced to various aspects of computingand computational thinking through round table discussions of current computing trends andapplications, as well as interactive activities that demonstrated how computers work and processinformation. Using the knowledge students gained from this exposure they developed projectproposals for new applications or devices that interest them.The second phase of the I-3 Experience was the Investigate program. The students wereintroduced to App Inventor and Arduino IDEs through a series of condensed tutorials known asCrash Courses. This phase equipped students with a computational toolkit through engagementin skill building and artifact refinement and development.In the Innovate phase, students focused on the creation of innovative devices and applicationprototypes in a research lab environment. The artifacts students developed were entered intocompetitions and project showcases at the K-12 and collegiate level.Our goal in designing this program was to build on the success of existing K-12 summer campoutreach programs offered by our university by offering students an opportunity to pursue theirinterest in CS through a constructionist and project-based curriculum. As we move the studentsfrom exposure to personalization of the technology they develop; we hope to increase thenumber of students desirous of enrolling in college as computer science majors. Our overarchinggoal is to increase the likelihood of students who apply to computer science undergraduatedegree programs. This paper will discuss the program, strategies for program success, andenrollment and participation outcomes of this year long program.
Gardner-McCune, C., & DUPE McCune, D. B., & Edwards, C. M., & Stallworth, C. (2013, June), I-3 Experience: Expanding Research and Design Opportunities for Under-represented High School Students Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19691
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