Location

Room 1220 B

Type of Presentation

Individual paper/presentation (20 minute presentation)

Target Audience

Higher Education

Abstract

Scientists and engineers often think in and through images (e.g., Hutto 2007). “Scientific print genres” frequently contain “at least one and often more than one graphical display and one mathematical expression per page of running text”; sometimes, even, a visual will cover 90% of a page (Lemke, 2004). Given the relative uniformity of principles, practices and tools across science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, one might expect standardized science and technology (S&T) visuals. Worldwide, however, scientists and engineers are influenced by their own personal experiences and by material and cultural contexts (e.g., physical environs, technological resources, educational systems). A previous study (in press) found significant variations in HE students’ portrayal of S&T concepts for students in globally disparate cultures (Durão, Pinto, Henneke, and Balch). This trend motivated us to analyze similarly disparate S&T practitioners’ visual representations and their reasons for those representations.

The VISTAC - Science and Technology Visuals in Action Engineering Pilot Study attempts to achieve the following:

  1. Understand when, where and how workplace engineers use and produce S&T visuals.

  2. Interpret differences and similarities in S&T visuals.

  3. Learn how engineers produce and are informed by such visuals.

This qualitative study comprises demographic questionnaires, ethnographic and video-ethnographic shadowing, and closing reflective interviews with participants. Data collection draws on primary research from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Greece, Malaysia, Portugal, Singapore, Sweden, the U.S.

This presentation reports preliminary findings of the pilot study and reveals implications for HE information literacy.

Presentation Description

Visuals are ubiquitous in communication about science and technology (S&T), and the relative uniformity of principles, practices and tools across STEM disciplines might lead us to expect such visuals to be standardized. Worldwide, however, scientists and engineers are influenced by their own personal experiences and by material and cultural contexts, and we previously found significant variations in HE students’ portrayal of S&T concepts for students in globally disparate cultures. This motivated us to conduct a pilot study analyzing the visual representations of engineers in disparate countries and their reasons for those representations. This presentation reports preliminary findings of the study and reveals implications for HE information literacy.

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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Sep 25th, 2:45 PM Sep 25th, 4:00 PM

Conveying meaning through shapes and lines: What practicing engineers can teach Higher Education (HE) about Information Literacy in g/local worksites

Room 1220 B

Scientists and engineers often think in and through images (e.g., Hutto 2007). “Scientific print genres” frequently contain “at least one and often more than one graphical display and one mathematical expression per page of running text”; sometimes, even, a visual will cover 90% of a page (Lemke, 2004). Given the relative uniformity of principles, practices and tools across science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, one might expect standardized science and technology (S&T) visuals. Worldwide, however, scientists and engineers are influenced by their own personal experiences and by material and cultural contexts (e.g., physical environs, technological resources, educational systems). A previous study (in press) found significant variations in HE students’ portrayal of S&T concepts for students in globally disparate cultures (Durão, Pinto, Henneke, and Balch). This trend motivated us to analyze similarly disparate S&T practitioners’ visual representations and their reasons for those representations.

The VISTAC - Science and Technology Visuals in Action Engineering Pilot Study attempts to achieve the following:

  1. Understand when, where and how workplace engineers use and produce S&T visuals.

  2. Interpret differences and similarities in S&T visuals.

  3. Learn how engineers produce and are informed by such visuals.

This qualitative study comprises demographic questionnaires, ethnographic and video-ethnographic shadowing, and closing reflective interviews with participants. Data collection draws on primary research from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Greece, Malaysia, Portugal, Singapore, Sweden, the U.S.

This presentation reports preliminary findings of the pilot study and reveals implications for HE information literacy.