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Makerspace Participation: Which Students Visit, Return, and Why?

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Conference

2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

Design in Engineering Education Division: Postcard and Student Essays

Tagged Division

Design in Engineering Education

Page Count

11

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/33075

Download Count

51

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Paper Authors

biography

Malini Josiam University of Texas, Austin

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Malini Josiam is an undergraduate student studying Mechanical Engineering. She is a research assistant in the Engineering Education Center research group at the University of Texas at Austin.

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Anita D. Patrick University of Texas, Austin

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Anita Patrick is a STEM Education Doctoral Student in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, and Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her BS in Bioengineering from Clemson University where she tutored undergraduate mathematics and science courses, and mentored undergraduate engineering majors. Prior to coming to UT, she independently tutored K12 and undergraduate mathematics and science. Her research interests include engineering education, identity and equity. Address: Engineering and Education Research Center (EER) 2501 Speedway, Austin, TX 78712 Email: apatrick@utexas.edu

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Madison E. Andrews University of Texas, Austin Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-9653-9785

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Madison Andrews is a STEM Education doctoral student and Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University in 2017.

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Maura J. Borrego University of Texas, Austin

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Maura Borrego is Director of the Center for Engineering Education and Professor of Mechanical Engineering and STEM Education at the University of Texas at Austin. She previously served as a Program Director at the National Science Foundation, on the board of the American Society for Engineering Education, and as an associate dean and director of interdisciplinary graduate programs. Her research awards include U.S. Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), a National Science Foundation CAREER award, and two outstanding publication awards from the American Educational Research Association for her journal articles. Dr. Borrego is Deputy Editor for Journal of Engineering Education. All of Dr. Borrego’s degrees are in Materials Science and Engineering. Her M.S. and Ph.D. are from Stanford University, and her B.S. is from University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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Abstract

Makerspaces are becoming increasingly common facilities in engineering departments and universities across the country. Facility stakeholders, including students, professors, and university administration, hold many assumptions about the benefits and importance of the spaces, but little research has been done to quantify student usage and to evaluate participation within these spaces. This is especially important to understand given the interdisciplinary and multipurpose nature of these facilities. In this paper, we seek to understand which undergraduate engineering students use the Makerspace and what factors influence their likelihood to return.

In partnership with a Makerspace at a large, public institution in the Southwest, we analyzed nearly 29,500 sign-in entries from 4,230 unique participants. Log-in information from these students included an open-ended response to their reason for visiting the facility, which was coded into five categories. We provide descriptives by major of the students, who visited the Makerspace within a two-year period, as well as results of chi-square analyses to determine differences in use of the Makerspace and results of logistic regression to determine the probability of students’ return. Analysis of this data begins to uncover the ways in which undergraduate students engage with Makerspaces and illuminates differences in behavior between majors. Further research should investigate the reasons behind these patterns and possible barriers to entry.

Josiam, M., & Patrick, A. D., & Andrews, M. E., & Borrego, M. J. (2019, June), Makerspace Participation: Which Students Visit, Return, and Why? Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/33075

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