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The Effect oF 3D Printing and Design on Students' Motivation, Interests, Mathematical and Real-life Skills: An Informal STEM Education
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My goal of this thesis was to develop two publication-ready research articles rather than a traditional thesis. Technology is changing the way students learn in amazing ways. Researchers found that student-centered, technology-integrated learning environments help to produce students who are better able to think critically, solve problems, collaborate with others, and engage deeply in the learning process. In addition, the emergence of technology-rich classrooms helps diverse learners understand conceptual ideas and apply those ideas and skills to real-life. When teachers know how to effectively use the unique features of technologies, they can address the varying cognitive strengths and needs of different students. Because understanding the impact of technology and finding the best ways to integrate technology into the classroom is critical, an investigation was conducted to determine whether the use of 3D printers and design software in a summer camp setting had a positive effect on student’s motivation, interests, mathematical and real-life skills. There were statistically significant increase in students’ motivation, interests, real-life skills, and some of the mathematical skills. In addition, positive effect sizes indicated practical importance of the study. Despite the complexities of the program and high cognitive load for students, 3D printing and design class allowed students gain motivation, interests, real-life skills, and some mathematical skills. Although there has been growing interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) for students in the United States, previous research shows that there is a growing concern that the United States will not have sufficient numbers of skilled workers in STEM field. To determine if informal STEM educational setting can improve students’ interest for learning STEM, the second article employed a quasi-experiment design to explore the effectiveness of a summer camp program on student’s affect towards STEM. Although there were no statistically significant increases in any of the disciplines, students had more positive attitude toward science, engineering, and mathematics after the summer camp. If the intervention was longer where students had lower cognitive load, more practical importance is expected.
Kwon, Hyunkyung (2016). The Effect oF 3D Printing and Design on Students' Motivation, Interests, Mathematical and Real-life Skills: An Informal STEM Education. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from