Students in the Culture and Technology Lab have been leading projects on a wide range of learning opportunities with physical computing. Leveraging my background in the arts with student expertise in computer engineering, wearables, and teaching creative technologies we have developed a set of undergraduate maker-oriented curricula, dance and physical computing after-school programs, and new types of breadboards and modular circuits that scaffold learning. Much of this work was led by my former student Dr. Kayla DesPortes.
Currently, we are investigating how physical computing and screen-based computing provide different insights for learners. Our hypothesis is that physical computing will encourage embodiment and abstract model building of computational concepts and that screen-based computing may provide better transfer to other computing tasks. But as we learn more we can discover how the use of physical computing can best be used in CS education.