Public Discussion

  • Icon for: E Paul Goldenberg

    E Paul Goldenberg

    Facilitator
    May 16, 2016 | 05:02 p.m.

    I found your project so compelling—convincing both that this kind of school learning makes good sense and that it can be done well by kids—and your video so clear about the purpose and results that the kinds of questions I prefer to ask were all answered! So (reluctantly) I default to a question I don’t generally like to ask: scalability. I want first to be on record as considering scalability a risky (and often misleading) metric. Of course, we want school activities that can actually be used, but it’s valuable to have good things that teachers and schools can do, even if not all teachers and schools can do them. With that preamble, the work you show looks wonderful but also demanding. What teacher knowledge, skill, and inclination, what school resources, and/or what other factors need to be in place to do this successfully?

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 17, 2016 | 10:48 a.m.

    Thanks, Paul!
    Our project currently a relatively small group of high school teachers and out-of-school program facilitators, but we hope to build a network of like-minded educators interested in these kinds of projects. Since we encourage student choice in topics, teachers who have broad knowledge of the scientific and health topics that are likely to interest students have an advantage. It also helps if the teachers have knowledge of data visualization conventions and design ideas, but we do work on those things as well as some specific technologies in our professional development. We also work with teachers to develop their skills facilitating student technology use in the classroom and skills with facilitating student collaboration and group work. For some science teachers, working with their students on finding good sources of information and data about topics is a new thing, as well as helping students consider the credibility of sources and the perspectives of different stakeholders. But we find most teachers to be excited about students finding the work in their science classes to be relevant to their lives. Over the next year we’ll both be expanding our network of involved educators, and researching how this model can fit into and be adapted for diverse contexts.

  • Icon for: E Paul Goldenberg

    E Paul Goldenberg

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 10:26 p.m.

    Thanks. I’m definitely interested in remaining informed about this work (with more than an infographic!). —P

  • Icon for: Miriam Gates

    Miriam Gates

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 09:04 a.m.

    This is really interesting work. I’m so impressed by the sample student work. I’m interested in the context in which students were doing this work. Was this in the context of in-class projects or as informal science work? I’m particularly interested to understand how students were prepared to create such powerful infographics. That is, was there a stage 0 where students studied other infographics or did they produce these only using the prompts that you provided?

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 17, 2016 | 10:57 a.m.

    Thanks, Miriam!
    We have sites in both high school classrooms and in out-of-school programs for high school aged teens; the latter include a long-term “data journalism” internship, shown in the video, and short-term summer programs. The infographic featured in the video, “More Milk, Less Cows” came out of the data journalism internship, so compared to classroom projects and short-term programs the work is more polished, and uses higher end tools (in short term programs we use Venngage and other web-based end-user tools, in the internship they learn Illustrator).
    In both the out-of-school and in-school implementations of the model, there is indeed some version of a “stage 0”, where students both deconstruct and make sense of other infographics, and work on component skills related to data analysis and representation. Then they work on their own authoring projects.
    If you want to see other examples of student work as well as our in-progress student and educator resources, check out our website at http://science-infographics.org/

  • Icon for: Miriam Gates

    Miriam Gates

    Facilitator
    May 19, 2016 | 03:27 p.m.

    Thanks so much. I look forward to exploring the website in detail.

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 17, 2016 | 10:57 a.m.

    Are you a Colorado high school or middle school teacher? Interested in participating in a professional development institute on STEM Literacy through Infographics this summer (July 18-22) in Boulder? Please email joseph.polman@colorado.edu and I’ll send you information on what involvement entails, and how to apply!

  • Icon for: Courtney Arthur

    Courtney Arthur

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 05:09 p.m.

    It is amazing to see what the students were able to construct with these data sets. I am curious what traits or skills you see necessary that help students in constructing these models and whether or not these are of focus in professional development with the teachers (through curriculum or pedogogy, for example)?

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 02:01 p.m.

    Hi Courtney,
    We have a set of guidelines that reflect the practices and skills we see as necessary, and they are indeed part of the teacher professional development and the sorts of instruction we encourage through curriculum. Those guidelines are at http://science-infographics.org/resources-for-m...
    Thanks!

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 02:07 p.m.

    Visual and data literacy is part of the picture, and another resource we’ve developed is at
    http://science-infographics.org/make-your-infog...
    There are other tools we use developed by other projects (see reply to Finzer comment below)

  • Small default profile

    Diana

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 06:05 p.m.

    Hey Courtney,

    I am a participant and co-researcher for the SLI project at the out-of-school internship site. I am currently creating an infographic about luciferase, and right now I am trying to find data on how much luciferase is used daily, what is it mostly used in, and how have its usage changed over the years. There’s not much data on these topics but there is a lot of information on luciferase alone and diagrams of how it works.

    I believe I’m pretty good at finding credible information and following up on the information I find. This is really helpful because I can disregard any information that isn’t true to help create a reliable infographic. Participating in this internship is definitely different from school because you can pick and choose to create an infographic on any topic related to science. In a school setting, you’d most likely be limited to certain topics and it wouldn’t be an extended project. It would probably be something the class would cover briefly and move on to something else. None the less, school and this internship are similar because they both give guidance and you know you’re not flying blind. You’d also learn more about infographics and you’d gain skills or enhance the skills you may already have.

  • Icon for: Brian Drayton

    Brian Drayton

    Co-Principal Investigator
    May 18, 2016 | 11:45 a.m.

    So cool! I couldn’t quite tell from the presentation — are these infographics individual productions? Is there some peer-critique/team work as part of the process? Do you suggest intended audiences, or do they choose as part of their design? Or are they mostly aiming at their own age group, in making choices about design, reading level, quantitative skills required of the reader, etc. ?

  • Small default profile

    Engida Gebre

    Guest
    May 18, 2016 | 05:58 p.m.

    Thanks, Brian!

    Students generally work on their infographic alone or in pairs—they choose. Once they create their draft version, they get feedback from peers. As you mentioned, they target their own age group as their audience. The purpose is for students to produce infographic-based science news for fellow teen readers.

    Engida

  • Icon for: Cynthia Graville

    Cynthia Graville

    Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 11:46 a.m.

    Students create these infographics in the hope that they will be accepted for publication to the online science news magazine, Scijourner.org. Infographics are first submitted to a professional science news editor for review, and often take several cycles of edits and revisions before they are accepted for publication (and many don’t make it to publication.) The readership of Scijourner is high, and infographics get 100s to 1000s of hits.

  • Icon for: William Finzer

    William Finzer

    Senior Scientist
    May 18, 2016 | 08:57 p.m.

    I find this work compelling! And the video does an excellent job of conveying why it’s important for students to experience this work with data and infographics. I would love to know more about how students’ conceptions of data changed as a result of their using data to convey a message.

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 02:17 p.m.

    Thanks, Bill! Your comment makes me realize trying to gather indicators of how all students’ conceptions of data change would be useful to include in our overall assessment scheme. Case studies show us that through iterative design and revision processes with their infographics based on feedback, some students come to see data as more related to their own and others’ lives. Finding, processing, and making sense of data on the web that illuminate open-ended questions is a real challenge for students and teachers (and us!). For the sense-making with data through visualization, tools like your Common Online Data Analysis Platform have helped (https://concord.org/projects/codap)

  • Small default profile

    Dariyun

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 05:22 p.m.

    Hello Bill

    I currently am a participant and co-researcher for the SLI project at the out-of-school internship site. I previously had a infographic published on the effects of false memories in mice and the possible implications it could have on humans. I am currently working on an infographic on why poorer communities have, in a word, poisonous water pipes and or water supplies. This will include data from Flint, pie leaching, as well as information on the formation and dangers of lead in water supplies. I still however am looking for accurate data in regards to pipe or plumbing conditions, and how it affects the community as a whole. I have always worked with data throughout my high-school experience because I was enrolled in AP and Honors courses, which required extensive research in regards to projects and papers. So the transition of finding accurate data and research was never an issue.

  • Small default profile

    Rachel

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 05:27 p.m.

    Hi Bill!
    I’m a participant in the SLI project. I’m currently creating a comparative infographic on the drought that contributed to the collapse of Mayan civilization and the current drought in California. Working on this project has really altered my view of data. Before starting this, data wasn’t something that I had particularly used beyond occasional school research projects, and even then I’d never worked with raw data. Before, data was just sort of a vague concept, and I didn’t think I’d be able to decipher any of it. I’d never considered how easy to understand stuff like this could be, so when I started working on this project the idea was rather daunting. I don’t want to speak for everyone, but I know personally I’m much more comfortable with data now. Currently I’m trying to understand how to do precipitation reconstructions from O-18 data, so if anyone out there is knowledgeable about paleoclimatology I’d appreciate the help!

  • Small default profile

    Alex

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 05:30 p.m.

    Hi Bill!
    I am a participant and co-researcher for the SLI project at an out-of-school internship site. I am currently creating an infographic about bacterial clouds and how they are unique to each individual. Right now I am currently trying to interpret some complicated data charts to make a visual for my infographic. I’ve worked with data before in classes like physics and biology from our own data that we observed, and I’ve also done numerous research projects throughout my high school career. So this hasn’t been an entirely new process for me, at least in the research and using data aspect.

  • Small default profile

    Tara Gray

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 08:07 a.m.

    I am a HS Digital Arts teacher from eastern Pennsylvania (the Lehigh Valley area 1.25 hrs. or so north of Philly) so by its very nature my entire room pretty much IS STEAM oriented by default. I just wanted to say that I LOVE this project! I teach everything from CAD and Imagineering to TV Production, Graphic Design and Photography so I am always looking for cool ways to introduce any new STEAM projects that I find into my curriculum.

    We do already do some information graphics types of projects but I’ve never thought to have them go get actual scientific studies and turn them into graphics. Thank you for planting that seed in my brain!

    I have a couple of questions for you…

    Will you be working with anyone outside of Colorado at anytime during the project?
    Will there be videos posted of the sessions from the summer institute that maybe we could watch if we wanted more information but cannot take part in the program because we are so far away?

    Thanks for doing great work!

  • Small default profile

    Engida Gebre

    Guest
    May 19, 2016 | 11:32 a.m.

    Thanks for the comments, Tara.

    Here is the project website for more information http://science-infographics.org. Yes, we are working with teachers in Massachusetts and Missouri as well.

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 02:24 p.m.

    And as for recording sessions in our PD this summer, we hadn’t thought of that. Not sure how much that would help. We are definitely going to be updating the ensure Engida referenced above both before and after this summer’s institute in Colorado. In 2017 we’ll be refining our curricular resources on that website for more general usage as Open Educational Resources (OER)

  • Icon for: Joseph Polman

    Joseph Polman

    Co-Presenter
    May 19, 2016 | 02:30 p.m.

    Forgot to say, Tara: I LOVE the sound of your classroom. Please email me (joseph.polman@colorado.edu) if you want to talk more. I could send you a couple articles from our earlier work that were published in NSTA’s The Science Teacher

  • Icon for: Teresa Eastburn

    Teresa Eastburn

    Digital Learning & UCAR Connect Lead
    May 20, 2016 | 02:09 a.m.

    Now here’s a topic near and dear to me since both the world of data and effective communication of all kinds are relevant to my work at NCAR. Kudos to you all for a novel project that is critical as data grows by leaps and bounds daily in and around us! If any students have infographics on issues/topics in the Earth sciences, I’d love to see them. And I will definitely check out the Common Online Data Analysis Platform that Joseph mentioned above. Thanks all and Go Buffs <:

  • Icon for: Cynthia Graville

    Cynthia Graville

    Presenter
    May 20, 2016 | 01:07 p.m.

    Thanks, Teresa! Here are the infographics (and a few written news articles) that have been categorized as Earth science on SciJourner: http://bit.ly/scijourner_earth_science
    I’ll second Joe’s sentiments, CODAP is really useful for students exploring data to find compelling stories.

  • Further posting is closed as the showcase has ended.

  1. Cynthia Graville
  2. http://www.slu.edu/department-of-communication-home/social-justice-communication-collaborative/faculty
  3. STEM Learning through Infographics
  4. http://science-infographics.org
  5. Saint Louis University
  1. Joseph Polman
  2. http://www.colorado.edu/education/people/joseph-polman
  3. Professor and Associate Dean for Research
  4. STEM Learning through Infographics
  5. http://science-infographics.org
  6. University of Colorado Boulder
  1. Andee Rubin
  2. Senior Scientist
  3. STEM Learning through Infographics
  4. http://science-infographics.org
  5. TERC
Facilitators’
Choice
Presenters’
Choice

STEM Literacy through Infographics: Youth Data Journalism as Means to Contextualize Science in Life
IIS-1441561, IIS-1441471, IIS-1441481

This video explores the STEM Learning through Infographics project (SLI), which utilizes a “citizen science journalism” approach to empower secondary school students to produce authentic news reporting on a personally relevant STEM topic.

In the SLI project, a team from University of Colorado, TERC, Simon Fraser University, and Saint Louis University is refining, implementing, and assessing a sociotechnical system involving teens in infographic-based data journalism with the purpose of fostering engagement with STEM and improved scientific/mathematical literacy. The system involves supports for data search and visualization, with the latter based on studies of mathematical thinking with data visualization tools.

Our collaborative project is developing and researching resources and activities to facilitate youth engagement in data journalism in a diverse set of contexts—high schools, an intensive summer camp, and an out-of-school internship.