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Leigh Graves Wolf & Michelle Schira Hagerman

CEP811: Adapting Innovative Technology into Education
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“Interactive, multisensory, and innovative”
- Leigh Graves Wolf & Michelle Schira Hagerman -

CEP 811 is designed to push students to extend their conceptions of innovation. Focused on the integration of digital technologies in classroom settings, this course immerses students in the world of making, doing, and creating with new tools in new ways. The single core idea that defines the course is that innovative uses of technology can happen with a range of tools, in a range of ways, in a range of contexts.

Learn, Explore, Create and Share

CEP 811 guides students through repurposing the world around them, using existing technologies as well as creating new ones. Students explore how education, computer programming, game design, and learning all intersect, and through the course iterate and share their ideas and creations with global networks of makers and educators in a variety of contexts.

One main objective of the course is for students to explore pedagogical ideas through the lens of Maker Education. Students are required to purchase maker kits (e.g. Makey Makey, Little Bits, Squishy Circuits, etc.) or to explore 3D printing if they have access to a printer.. Once they have selected a maker technology, students are asked to do three things: visit a thrift shop (or the “junk drawer” in their home) to find items to repurpose in conjunction with their kit, connect their ideas to learning and creativity theories, and to consider the work they have done with their kit in relation to Universal Design Theory. All of their explorations are framed through their unique disciplinary lenses.

Another feature of the of the course asks students to participate in an online community building activity. For the past few semesters, students and instructors have been pioneering online EdCamp, in which they select a topic of personal interest and prepare an informal, conversational talk to share with their peers via Google Hangout. Traditionally EdCamps have been held in face to face settings and CEP 811 has explored how this would work in an online space. Moving forward, students are continuing to pioneer. In Spring semester 2015 students will be holding online “Maker Meetings”, emulating online what would happen in a more “traditional” physical MakerSpace.

Evidence of Effectiveness

Students experience a high level of cognitive discomfort in CEP 811, something the instructors believe is essential to the experience. They are asked to reflect on this discomfort at the end of the course:

“More and more I become convinced that everyone is a maker, but that ‘creative’ and ‘artistic’ are not synonymous, and we need to recognize the multiplicity of creative types… this risk is what will drive us forward - teachers, students, and thinkers worldwide. How could I not want that for my students? ” - student feedback

Technologies included in this course:

Maker Kits

Online EdCamp


Dashika Cosby, Adjunct Faculty

William Marsland, Adjunct Faculty

Craig McMichael, Adjunct Faculty

Amy Pietrowski, Adjunct Faculty

Andrew Steinman, Adjunct Faculty

Sean Sweeney, Adjunct Faculty

Mary Wever, Adjunct Faculty

Melissa White, Adjunct Faculty

Sarah Beauchamp Hicks, Former Adjunct Instructor

Andrea Zellner, EPET Graduate Student