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Culturally-Based CT and Science
The challenge to educators is to find avenues to the audience that are effective at transforming their minds and thinking mechanisms so that the learner can confidentaly go forward to embrace the next frontier. The STEM+C (STEM + Computing Partnerships) program has as its goal the integration of computation and science. This project seeks new and innovative avenues to empower the learners with science and computation as one integral unit. Prior work on Culturally Situated Design Tools (CSDTs) showed statistically significant improvement for under-represented students. The original focus was on simulations of cultural arts and helping students discover "heritage algorithms" for new virtual designs. Now, the investigators wish to expand CSDTs to include computational activities into Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and other social motivations such as civic engagement and environmental concepts. CSDTs has now been simplified which allows students use of a programming platform to explore culturally-based STEM topics and share their code through an online user community.

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