Category Archives: Youth

Kesiena Chris-Iwuru #UBC MA Defence: Youth Perspectives on #Cyberbullying and Social Media Platforms #bced

Kesiena Chris-Iwuru, BSc, MSc

Masters of Arts in Media & Technology Studies Thesis Defense

YOUTH PERSPECTIVES ON CYBERBULLYING AND SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS: TEEN AGENCY, INTERACTIVITY, AND SOCIAL COGNITION

Friday January 19, 2018, 10:00 am, Scarfe 2108

ABSTRACT: This research examines how social media platforms have reconfigured traditional notions of social interaction and specifically how a sample of youth view these platforms in light of problems with cyberbullying. The research design included two primary questions: 1) How do social media platforms reconfigure social interaction and means by which youth perceive and understand these platforms? 2) What role does social cognition play in youth perspectives of online identities and interactions in relation to cyberbullying? The participants included nine Grades 10-12 students (4 males and 5 females), aged between 16-21 years. The research site was an independent high school located in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Canada. Actor-network theory and optimal distinctive theory (Brewer, 1991; Latour, 2005) formed the theoretical perspective for analyzing, discussing and the presentation of the research study findings. Data were collected through ethnographic techniques, including observations, artefacts (documents, etc.), and interviews.

The findings from this study indicate that the ubiquitous mode of interaction within these spaces deviates from traditional norms, with resulting consequence that impact users’ ability to perceive telepresence. The manner in which social media spaces are understood is largely influenced and informed by the predominant collective, where the self is seen as undefined and enacted in context-specific processes. The findings also indicate that interactions, perception, and mode of responses to conflict situations are based on previous experiences and currently held notions of what constitutes appropriate online behaviour. The implications and significance of the research findings have relevance for educators on how best to engage and understand teenagers in these spaces, with new and effective measures to examine instances of conflict and antisocial behaviour online. For social media companies and startups, it provides an insight into the nuanced mode and context of interaction prevalent within these platforms and the resulting impact on how individuals, the collective, and the platform itself all exert influence on each other.

  • SUPERVISOR:  Dr. Stephen Petrina
  • COMMITTEE MEMBER:  Dr. Franc Feng
  • THESIS EXAMINER:  Dr. Samson Nashon

UBC Girls’ Makeathon

Leadership opportunities are available for Teacher Candidates to volunteer at the UBC Girls’ Makeathon! This is an equity-oriented event for high school girls to learn how to make apps and have fun exploring maker activities with recycled materials and wearable technologies.

You need to be available to volunteer on June 17 @ the Makeathon. Also, we require that you attend a one-hour event planning meeting on May 16 (please share when you are available on the Google Form). No previous experience is necessary: we will train you! We will have a fun training session on app making, wearable tech, and the ADST curriculum. This two-hour training session will be coordinated according to the availability of our volunteers.

Our project team is committed to providing a respectful and empowering learning environment for high school girls. We have an inclusive view of the word “girl” and welcome trans, genderqueer, and non-binary youth at the Makeathon. We warmly welcome Teacher Candidates of all gender and from culturally diverse backgrounds. If you are interested, please fill out this Google Form ASAP: goo.gl/2d39XB

Lesley Liu’s Masters Thesis Defense

You are invited to the
Masters of Arts in Curriculum Studies Thesis Defense
Lesley Liu, BA

TWEENS, TEENS, AND DIGITAL TEXTS:
DESIGNING AFFINITY SPACES TO UNDERSTAND CYBERBULLYING

Thursday September 22, 2016, 3:00 pm, Scarfe 310

ABSTRACT:

This research explores how adolescents design, interpret, and navigate affinity spaces in connection to cyberbullying awareness. A class of Grade 8 students (aged 12-13, mixed gender, and a variety of digital skills) participated in the study. The participants first investigated the use of affinity spaces, collaborative physical and digital spaces (Gee, 2004), then proceeded to design their own spaces for collaborative group work. A variety of data was collected in the form of peer-to-peer pre interviews, OneNote collaborative group journals, in-class observations of class work sessions, and post interviews.

This research situates learning as a social process mediated through interactions using media and technologies of a physical (e.g., private messages, forums, profile pages, self-authored webpages) and semiotic (e.g., language) nature; thus, a socio-cultural discourse approach provides valuable insight and layers of understanding into how children appropriate or learn mannerisms that circulate through real and virtual spaces (Cole, 1985; Leont’ev, 1981; Smagorinsky, 2011; Vygotsky, 1978; Wertsch, 1990). Actor-network theory is employed to explain how humans and technologies assume or create agency in designed spaces (Law & Callon, 1992).

The findings of this study inform how adolescents design affinity spaces (real and virtual) and emphasize design features they recommend to serve as functioning collaborative workspaces, both in and out of the classroom, to prevent or counter cyberbullying. Student-informed or student-designed spaces provide a sense of ownership or self-regulation and give insight as to how codes of conduct inform these spaces and vice versa. Future studies should adopt an iterative process of design-based research to test and refine these affinity spaces (Collins et al., 2004; Wang, Petrina, & Feng, 2015). Recommendations also include future applications of sociocultural theory and activity theory to discern how adolescents differentiate between face-to-face and online communication and practical classroom applications of affinity spaces in secondary schools.

SUPERVISOR: Dr. Stephen Petrina
COMMITTEE MEMBER: Dr. Marlene Asselin
THESIS EXAMINER: Dr. Douglas Adler

HWL @ CSSE 2016

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Congrats to the HWL Research Team for an excellent symposium on Designification of Learning.

This symposium explores the designification of learning to generate discussion on 21st century learning, curriculum, and instructional design. Six empirical reports offer depth and scope: 1) 15 preschoolers learning prosocial behaviours by designing or designifying with iPads; 2) 25 eighth graders designing affinity spaces to understand cyberbullying; 3) 107 young adults learning language within a Virtual Immersive Language Learning And Gaming Environment (VILLAGE); 4) 30 youth co-researchers designing or designifying in maker culture using the Tween Empowerment & Advocacy Methodology (TEAM); 5) firsthand design critique of the Uganda National Youth curriculum; and 6) designification of technotheologies using video design-based research (VDBR) and value-sensitive design (VSD).

The key objectives include: 1) to explore connections between de-signification, design-ification, and “new learning;” 2) to profile methodological advancements in design-based research (DBR), VDBR, VSD, and TEAM derived from lab and field-based studies; and 3) to examine designification of diverse learning environments (e.g., classrooms, affinity spaces, maker labs, and virtual worlds). The presentation format will be conversational and demonstrative, beginning with a series of focus questions to determine audience interests and generate seeds of discussion. A series of DRB demonstrations will be provided as stimulating examples and to provide depth of understanding.

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Excellent research, Stella Namae, on understanding the nature of out-of-school-in-school technological divide in Uganda.

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Challenging discussion on cyberbullying, cybercrime, and online identity construction led by Lesley Liu and Kesiena Chris-Iwuru.

Keeping Up with the Media

Paula MacDowell

Keeping Up with the Media is a media study guide created for teachers and students, by teachers. The authors are all practicing teachers (elementary and secondary) completing a Master of Education in Digital Learning and Curriculum at UBC. This elite team produced this guide to enhance media literacy and media education across the K-12 curriculum.

Authors: #UBCDLC3
Editor: Paula MacDowell
Publication Date: August 4, 2016
Format: Interactive, multi-touch eBook
Online: http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1149612619

#CreateNoHate #‎NoH8‬

Create No Hate, a powerful anti-cyberbullying video made by 13-year-old filmmaker/vlogger Luke Culhane ‪

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noHate

Computer coding added to BC’s K-12 curriculum

At the inaugural BC Tech Summit, Christy Clark,the Premier of British Columbia announced that computer coding will be added to the province’s K-12 school curriculum:
Opening Keynote
www.cbc.ca
www.vancitybuzz.com
www.techvibes.com
www.theglobeandmail.com
www.thestar.com

What are some of the difficult questions concerning BC’s new tech strategy, including: teacher training, backend support, equitable funding for classroom technologies, and the need for government accountability?

What are the complex ethical, technical, and pedagogical issues associated with the development and implementation of BC’s new ADST framework?

How is technology changing the way children think, learn, and focus in school?

How might we increase student voice and choice in the development of new curriculum? For example, consider ISTE (International Society for Technology Education): Student FeedbackStandards for Students (7 Standards; 28 Performance Indicators).

BCIC (British Columbia Innovation Council)

Scratch Coding Curriculum Guide (draft by the Scratch Ed Team)

Computational Thinking (Wing, 2006)

Big ideas on British Columbia’s redesigned curriculum

Ipad

Paula (PJ) MacDowell’s PhD final oral exam @ Empowering Girls as Change Makers in Maker Culture: Stories from a Summer Camp for Girls in Design, Media & Technology

You are invited to
The Final Oral Examination
For the Degree of

DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
(Curriculum Studies)

PAULA (PJ) MACDOWELL
B.Ed, The University of Regina, 1995 MET,
The University of British Columbia, 2007

Monday, March 16, 2015, 12:30 pm
Room 200, Graduate Student Centre
Latecomers will not be admitted

Empowering Girls as Change Makers in Maker Culture: Stories from a Summer Camp for Girls in Design, Media & Technology

EXAM DETAILS
1. Exam Time: 12:30 PM on Monday, March 16, 2015 (Please arrive 5 minutes early, so the exam can begin promptly).
2. Exam Location: Room 200 of the Graduate Student Centre (Koerner Building, 6371 Crescent Road).

EXAMINING COMMITTEE
Chair:
Dr. Sandra Mathison (Measurement, Evaluation, and Research Methodology)
Supervisory Committee:
Dr. Stephen Petrina, Research Supervisor (Curriculum Studies)
Dr. Franc Feng (Curriculum Studies)
Dr. Sandra Scott (Curriculum Studies)
University Examiners:
Dr. E. Wayne Ross (Curriculum Studies)
Dr. Laurie Ford (School Psychology)
External Examiner:
Dr. Ann Marie Hill
Faculty of Education
Queen’s University
Kingston, Ontario

ABSTRACT

This study investigates how girls develop new affinities towards and capabilities in media and technology. Thirty co-researchers, girls aged 10-13, were recruited into 101 Technology Fun, a series of summer camps with learning labs in animation, game design, movie production, and robotics programming. The design studio setting, created by the How We Learn (Media & Technology Across the Lifespan) collective, offered girls their own makerspace to explore media and technology. A novel methodology was developed, the Tween Empowerment & Advocacy Methodology (TEAM), which emphasizes relational ethics through artifact production, storymaking, mind scripting, invention, and imagination. Highlighting the importance for youth voices to be recognized and given influence in the academic research concerning their lives and learning circumstances, the findings focus on the catalytic or generative artifacts and “little stories” (e.g., Lyotard’s petits récits) revealing the co-researchers’ experiences and expressions of girlhood-in-interaction-with-technology (the key unit of analysis).

This research addresses artifacts as they relate to stories made or examined by the team members, including our concerns, needs, talents, inspiration, literacy, and volition. The artifacts, such as music videos, robotic amusement park, and the momME alternate reality game, are catalytic for storymaking and, symmetrically, the stories are catalytic to artifact production and sharing. Four distinct yet interrelated elements characterize our fieldwork and designworks:

(1) agency (girls having influence and power)
(2) ingenuity (girls being clever and inventive)
(3) self-interpretation (girls making sense and significance)
(4) self-efficacy (girls judging their technological capabilities).

Findings underscore the statement that it is not really a question of whether girls like to design (most do), as much a matter concerning how, when, and why they learn to become innovators, leaders, and producers of media and technology (thereby overturning traditional gender and generational stereotypes). Indeed, how a group of female youth story changes in their sense of technological self-efficacy, self-interpretation, ingenuity, and agency is one of the most important contributions of this study. Questions, both guiding and emergent, are articulated in artifact and text to motivate further scholarly inquiry, action, and advocacy, thereby generating more opportunities for girls to participate in, design, make, and transform technology culture.

Facebook waning for Teens but still popular

Of course still popular in terms of traffic for teens, currently Facebook is 2nd to Twitter among teens in terms of importance. Waning importance for teens is translating into lulls in traffic. Myspace, in 2012 less than 7% of the teens found it important, has now dropped out of the picture. Google+ is, hard to say what is happening…

See: Statista 2013 and  Statista 2012 for more

Teenagers say goodbye to Facebook and hello to messenger apps

Gradual exodus of young people towards WhatsApp, WeChat and KakaoTalk is just as their mums and dads get the hang of social networking:

Parmy Olson, The Observer, November 10, 2013– Facebook made a startling admission in its earnings announcement this month: it was seeing a “decrease in daily users, specifically among teens”. In other words, teenagers are still on Facebook; they’re just not using it as much as they did. It was a landmark statement, since teens are the demographic who often point the rest of us towards the next big thing.

Their gradual exodus to messaging apps such as WhatsApp, WeChat and KakaoTalk boils down to Facebook becoming a victim of its own success. The road to gaining nearly 1.2 billion monthly active users has seen the mums, dads, aunts and uncles of the generation who pioneered Facebook join it too, spamming their walls with inspirational quotes and images of cute animals, and (shock, horror) commenting on their kids’ photos. No surprise, then, that Facebook is no longer a place for uninhibited status updates about pub antics, but an obligatory communication tool that younger people maintain because everyone else does.

All the fun stuff is happening elsewhere. On their mobiles.

When mobile messaging apps such as WhatsApp first emerged in 2009, they looked like a threat to mobile carriers. Everyone from Vodafone to Dutch operator KPN was mentioning them in sales calls. Mobile operators are estimated to have lost $23bn in SMS revenue in 2012 due to messaging apps, which host free instant messages through a phone’s data connection, which these days is often unlimited. Now these apps are becoming a threat to established social networks too.

WhatsApp, the most popular messaging app in the UK and on half the country’s iPhones, according to Mobile Marketing Magazine, has more than 350 million monthly active users globally. That makes it the biggest messaging app in the world by users, with even more active users thansocial media darling Twitter, which counts 218 million. About 90% of the population of Brazil uses messaging apps, three-quarters of Russians, and half of Britons, according to mobile consultancy Tyntec. WhatsApp alone is on more than 95% of all smartphones in Spain. The power users and early adopters of these apps, the ones you’re most likely to see tapping their thumbs over a tiny screen, are under 25.

Part of the reason is that gradual encroachment of the grey-haired ones on Facebook. Another is what messaging apps have to offer: private chatting with people you are friends with in real life. Instead of passively stalking people you barely know on Facebook, messaging apps promote dynamic real-time chatting with different groups of real-life friends, real life because to connect with them on these apps you will typically already have their mobile number. The trend flies in the face of recurring criticism of young people – that their social lives are largely virtual – when many more are in fact embracing the virtues of privacy and services like WhatsApp, which shun advertising.

“I only use WhatsApp to communicate and send pics these days,” said Natalie West, a twentysomething financial sales associate in London. In the last few years she has used Facebook less and less because she doesn’t want “the whole world to know” what she’s doing. When people set up events and get-togethers on Facebook, West and her boyfriend tend to reply on WhatsApp instead because “it’s more personal”. For similar reasons, some 78% of teenagers and young people use mobile messengers to plan a meet-up with friends, according to research advisory firm mobileYouth.

Another factor is the rise of the selfie, often silly self-portraits taken at arm’s length with a mobile. Almost half of the photos on Instagram feeds among people aged 14 to 21 in the UK are selfies, according to mobileYouth. Sending those photos via a mobile messaging service is safer than broadcasting them on Facebook, since they’re less likely to be seen by a boss or dozens of Facebook friends you forgot you had. Selfies are even bigger on Snapchat, the evanescent photo sharing app that deletes a photo several seconds after it has been viewed. With about 5 million active monthly users, the service has inevitably become a favoured way for teens to send sexy or even naked photos of themselves, an ill-advised practice known as “sexting”. But teens also love Snapchat because it allows them to send inane photos of themselves without fear of leaving a permanent digital footprint.The California-based app is seen as so hot, with so much potential for growth, that it has already been pegged with a $2-$4bn valuation in the Silicon Valley tech community. Estimates are even higher for WhatsApp, which makes money through an annual subscription; some observers suggest it could be worth $5bn or more.

The final, big reason why young people are gravitating towards messaging apps is that many of these apps no longer do just messaging. They are social networks. The best examples come out of Asia, with messaging platforms KakaoTalk (South Korea), WeChat (China) and LINE (Japan). All have tens of millions of users, with WeChat boasting more than 200 million, and take their services beyond offering straight messaging to games, stickers and music sharing. Before you write off digital stickers as inane, they are a decent moneyspinner for LINE: of the $58m the company made in sales in the first quarter of 2013, half came from selling games and 30%, or roughly $17m, from sales of its 8,000 different stickers. Some are free or, in Spain where LINE has 15 million registered users, cost around €1.99. Often users choose stickers instead of words when they need to express themselves, one LINE executive said; it’s known to have helped couples get over fights more easily by offering multiple stickers to say sorry.

Read More: The Observer

STEM 2014 conference Call for Papers

The University of British Columbia is hosting the 3rd International STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Education Conference on its Vancouver campus in July 2014.  The Call for Papers is posted below and the submission deadline is December 9, 2013.

We hope those of you engaged in STEM Education will submit a proposal to present: detailed information on the submission process is on the STEM 2014 website.  Your assistance in sharing the Call for Papers with colleagues and networks would be greatly appreciated.

CALL FOR PAPERS

STEM 2014 Conference | July 12-15
The University of British Columbia | Vancouver, Canada

STEM Education and Our Planet:
Making Connections Across Contexts

 The International Conference of STEM in Education is an opportunity for educators and researchers from schools, universities, colleges, businesses, industries and other private and public agencies to share and discuss their innovative practices and research initiatives that may advance STEM education.

The conference will create opportunities for sharing:

  • information and knowledge through keynote addresses from world leaders in STEM education, papers, poster presentations, panels, workshops, symposia, and innovative showcases;
  • effective STEM pedagogical practices and strategies in and across a variety of education settings;
  • the most contemporary STEM research initiatives and their outcomes;
  • professional development approaches for STEM educators in a range of educational contexts;
  • experiences and networking between participants from across the globe.

Join us in the summer of 2014 at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver.  Submit your proposal to present at the STEM 2014 Conference at stem2014.ubc.ca.  Call for Papers closes December 9, 2013.

We invite proposals from educators, academics, education officers, industry partners, graduate and undergraduate students for papers, poster presentations, panels, workshops, symposia, and innovative showcases.  Proposals will be peer reviewed, and are invited in any area related to the overall focus of the conference, including:

  • Innovation in STEM Research
  • Innovative Resources for STEM Education
  • Transformation in Educational Practices through STEM
  • Sustainability Education and STEM
  • Interdisciplinary Approaches to Popular Science Education
  • Life-long learning in STEM
  • STEM learning in and across formal and informal contexts
  • Curriculum Theory and Development in STEM
  • Educational Philosophy and Theory about STEM
  • Educational Policy, Leadership and Management for STEM
  • Rural Education and STEM
  • Special Education and STEM
  • Educational Technology in STEM
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development in STEM
  • Design and Technology Education
  • Science Fiction and STEM Education
  • Disasters and STEM Education
  • Other related STEM topics will also be considered

Presenters whose papers are accepted for the Conference will be invited to submit their full papers to be published in the peer-reviewed online STEM 2014 Conference Proceedings. Author guidelines are available on the conference website.

Video Gaming in the Classroom: Insights and Ideas from Teenage Students by Peter Halim

Peter and research participants in focus group

Congratulations to Peter Halim for successfully defending his thesis titled “Video Gaming in the Classroom: Insights and Ideas from Teenage Students”! Peter made the minor edits and closed his MA program, meaning that he will graduate in November. The thesis can be downloaded from the CIRCLE database.

Video Gaming in the Classroom: Insights and Ideas from Teenage Students

Peter Halim

For this research, four high school aged teenagers participated in an intensive one week video gaming camp, at which time they articulated their attitudes and ideas about mainstream video games and their place in education. The purpose was to explore strategies for utilizing mainstream commercial video games for educative purposes in the classroom. The participants’ insights along with observations made on their interaction with video games were analyzed through Rogers’ Diffusion of Innovation and the General Aggression Model. In summary, the participants, more or less experts in gaming, enjoyed video games and described them as one of their favourite activities. Furthermore, it was found that video games played both a positive and negative role in the participants’ lives. For example, all participants seemed to have developed healthy values and relationships directly through playing video games during their pre-adolescent years. Conversely, their responses also indicated that they experienced limits to video games and did not see innovation from market and home to school as a smooth, trivial process. Rather, they provided key insights into aligning specific games with specific content, curriculum, and courses. The participants’ insights suggest that the use of mainstream video games for learning will most likely continue to be a fringe strategy implemented by individual teachers who actively discern the educational uses of video games. Game and gaming literacies are among the most recent entries into new literacies research. This thesis contributes to this research by exploring teenagers’ ideas about gaming in the classroom. In conclusion, this study finds that mainstream video games have potential to be effectively used as learning strategies in the classroom in the future pending on continued progress and interest in this endeavor.

New Youth Studies Graduate Program at Calgary

Talkin’ Bout Their Generation:
Empowered Youth in an Era of Chaos and Indecision

Keynote speaker:
Dr. Henry Giroux
Global Television Chair, McMaster University
Youth in Revolt: Coming of Age in an Era of Savage Inequality 
Wednesday April 11, 2012

Registration is free, however participants are asked to register by March 15.  See updates and schedule for this two-day event and launch of Calgary’s Youth Studies Program.

Shirley R. Steinberg
Chair and Director
Werklund Foundation Center for Youth Leadership Education
Professor of Youth Studies, University of Calgary