Speaker Series

Chris Quintana, University of Michigan

Friday, October 28, 2011 1:00PM to 2:30PM
SEL 2087

Zydeco: Mobile Computing for Science Inquiry Across Classroom and Museums

Abstract: Current national K-12 science education recommendations envision expanding beyond classroom-based scientific inquiry to include out-of-class contexts, such as science museums, nature parks, etc. Such "nomadic inquiry" can help students incorporate a broader range of information to explore a range of scientific questions. However, this type of inquiry can also be challenging for students and teachers alike. We are exploring how to support students and teachers with this type of expanded science inquiry through our work in developing Zydeco, a scaffolded system for science inquiry that combines mobile devices (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad) with web and cloud technologies. The Zydeco model uses mobile devices to scaffold aspects of the science inquiry process (e.g., data collection) in different contexts, and web/cloud components to coordinate the data and observations that students gather while "on-the-go," to help connect classroom and out-of-class contexts for richer science experiences. Zydeco is an ongoing project, so this presentation will include a description of the current version of the system, some initial observations from pilot testing,and some ideas about where the project may go given the rapid evolution of mobile technology.