Programmable Tools for Teaching Data Literacy in Social Studies Classes – UROP Spring Symposium 2021

Programmable Tools for Teaching Data Literacy in Social Studies Classes

Benjamin Steinig

Benjamin Steinig

Pronouns: he/him/his

Research Mentor(s): Mark Guzdial, Professor
Research Mentor School/College/Department: Computer Science and Engineering / Engineering Education Research, College of Engineering
Presentation Date: Thursday, April 22, 2021
Session: Session 2 (11am – 11:50am)
Breakout Room: Room 16
Presenter: 5

Event Link


Participation in high school computer science classes has always been low, especially among students from traditionally underrepresented or underserved groups. This research project aims to explore an approach of creating opportunities to integrate computer science into existing non-CS classes which creates the opportunity for students to engage with computer science and gain an introduction to programming. By creating curriculum and proprietary data visualization tools for high school social studies classes, this project hopes to create computational tools that social studies teachers will actually adopt, and that will then identify an increase in student’s self-efficacy in regard to computer science. Our procedure to obtain student success data in learning data visualizations will be conducted through data logging of the proprietary software DV4L (Data Visualizations for Literacy). The product created for this study includes our own proprietary tool DV4L, as well as curriculum for high school teachers to understand and teach existing data visualization tools. I have been working to create minimal manuals hosted on the project web book that help teachers use data visualization tools. Additionally, I have been working on creating slow reveal graphs that allow students to understand the components of various data visualizations. Finally, I have been supporting the underlying infrastructure that hosts these manuals and tools by creating a new server platform for the project web book. With these products we hope to be able to change high school social studies instruction in the state, and eventually change the social studies classes on a nationwide basis. Our project hopes to see an increased understanding of data visualizations in high school students, and in the future see an increase in computer science class participation.

Authors: Benjamin Steinig, Mark Guzdial
Research Method: Computer Programming

lsa logoum logo