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PechaKucha Session 2: Transforming Learning Technologists into Design Researchers -- 140

13:40 - 14:40 on Tuesday, 11 September 2012 in 2.220

This seven minute, concise presentation will detail how graduate students at a University in the mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. are participating in design research efforts in the learning technologies field. The practice of design research is truly “a confrontation with reality” as educational researchers wrestle with changing the notions of traditional approaches to research toward the incorporation of more situated, applied and transformative methods to improve learning technology design, development and implementation. Design research has most recently been depicted as employing integrated cycles of design and research processes to address complex educational problems: 1) situated in real educational contexts; 2) focusing on the design and testing of a significant intervention; 3) using mixed methods; 4) involving multiple interventions; 5) involving collaborative partnerships between researchers and practitioners; 6) evolution of design principles and 7) attempting to demonstrate practical impact on practice (Anderson & Shattuck, 2012).

This brief talk will quickly overview current definitions of design research and then depict processes of this form of research through photographs of graduate student teams participating in design research including description of basic and applied methods used such as needs analysis, rapid prototyping, contextual analysis, talk-aloud protocols, usability testing, interviews, surveys, etc.

Graduate student design research projects have included the analysis, conceptual design and evaluation of formal as well as informal educational prototype solutions employing technologies such as iPhone applications and augmented reality for education and training contexts. A range of graduate student design research projects/processes will be briefly depicted such as prototypes addressing: 1) a mobile iPad application design to promote critical thinking for high school students at the National Zoo in Washington, DC; 2) a mobile smart phone application to improve visitors’ informal learning about American history at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate; 3) an augmented reality mystery game design for teaching U.S. Civil war history to children using geolocation iPhone features; and 4) an augmented reality prototype design to motivate and teach adults how to correctly implement physical therapy recommendations with feedback using video game console, Xbox Kinect. The varying research contexts and applied methods will be overviewed to represent a range of processes implemented in design research. The value of teaching Learning Technologists how to implement design research methods and strategies to improve the use of existing technologies as well as design new learning experiences with new tools will be addressed.

Design research is an emerging form of educational research that has the potential to greatly improve what we know about teaching, learning and learning technologies. Current methods of educational research can be enhanced with inclusion or adoption of a design research orientation particularly for those involved in the field of learning technologies.


Hi Brenda
It was great to meet you and I hope we can continue the conversation on our mutual interest in educational design research. I have forwarded details of the ascilite seminar series featuring Jan Herrington as presenter on 21st September. Wishing you safe trip home, and congrats again on being voted best PK session at the conference.

Thursday, 13 September 2012, 13:14

Thanks, Cathy. I very much enjoyed meeting you too and hope that we can stay in connect on our mutual research interests as well! Thanks also for the Herrington seminar information and safe travel to you. I hope to eventually get to your part of the world sometime soon and would love to connect! All the best, - Brenda

Thursday, 13 September 2012, 13:42