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Design Considerations for Capturing Computational Thinking Practices in High School Students’ Electronic Textile Portfolios

Assessing computational thinking in making has proven a challenge, in part because student creations are innately diverse and unique. In this paper we consider portfolios as a way to document and assess students’ learning processes in the context of designing electronic textile (e-textile) projects. We describe students’ use of portfolios at the end of an introductory computing course, Exploring Computer Science, during which 33 students created a series of electronic textile (e-textile) projects as part of a new curricular unit.

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“I’m the Audacity Wiz!”: Technology Identity Development in Minority Youth

A critical challenge in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education continues to be keeping young students on a pathway to a successful STEM career once they have entered it. Many students express an early interest in STEM and even start down the road to obtaining a STEM degree, only to change direction later, an aspect of the so-called “leaky pipeline.” Underrepresented minority students, in particular, face serious roadblocks to entering and staying on the path.

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The Tablet Game: An Embedded Assessment For Measuring Students' Programming Skill In App Inventor

Assessing students' learning of concepts in programming is an essential part of teaching computer science. We developed an assessment activity that measures students' skill in identifying programming structures used to create various behaviors in MIT App Inventor (AI). Called the Tablet Game, the assessment was implemented as interactive app on an Android device. Students interacted with elements on the screen, and then in a multiple-choice format, were asked to select which code-blocks would create those behaviors.

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Using Robotics and Game Design to Enhance Children’s Self- Efficacy, STEM Attitudes, and Computational Thinking Skills

This paper describes the findings of a pilot study that used robotics and game design to develop middle school students’ computational thinking strategies. One hundred and twenty-four students engaged in LEGO® EV3 robotics and created games using Scalable Game Design software. The results of the study revealed students’ pre–post self-efficacy scores on the construct of computer use declined significantly, while the constructs of videogaming and computer gaming remained unchanged.

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Leveraging a Multi-Partner Approach to Develop Successful STEM Outreach Programs

Careers in the U.S. that require STEM knowledge have grown rapidly, reinforcing the need to develop a future
workforce that is prepared to meet growing business needs and solve global challenges. Considering that there is a low number of
students pursuing STEM degrees and the low percentages of minority students in the STEM pipeline, STEM education has
been a focus of local and national education curriculum reform efforts. Extending beyond the classroom, university, industry,

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Examining the Value of Mentoring in Youth Engineering Programs: What Motivates a Mentor to Mentor?

The purpose of this research study is to examine the motivations of undergraduate students, graduate students, and teaching professionals to serve as mentors for elementary school-aged kids participating in the Summer Engineering Experiences for Kids (SEEK) program hosted by the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).

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The Pathway to Achieving Classroom Equity: Computational and Critical Thinking through Storytelling and 3D Models

This manuscript is part of a larger project and is an inter-disciplinary effort, dedicated to discovering answers to the following questions: 1) Do storytelling and story making serve as effective means to teach computer science to middle school youth? And 2) Can the integration of computing skills into the core middle school curriculum increase instruction and student learning of these skills?

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The Engineer of 2020, in the Making: Understanding how Young Adults Develop Maker Identities and the Implications for Education Reform

Mathematics in Informal Learning Environments: A Summary of the Literature

Liberatory Methodologies: Participatory Action Research Strategies for Discovering Inclusive Maker Space Practices

In this Research Work in Progress paper, we describe the methods chosen for a project exploring best practices of inclusion in maker spaces serving diverse populations. Maker spaces provide communities access to innovation tools in startup settings that are shaped by the participating members. In our study, these include not only hacker spaces that involve computing, electronic activities, and three-dimensional printing capabilities, but also sites focusing on traditional arts and crafts.

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