Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) is a biannual conference hosted by the International Society of the Learning Sciences. This past week, CSCL was hosted at École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, in Lyon, France. Researchers from around the world gathered to discuss the role of computers and computational thinking in collaborative formal and informal learning environments.
Group-based Cloud Computing submitted a poster to present regarding work performed with Elementary Science Preservice teachers at the University of Texas at Austin. Max Sherard, a graduate student working on the grant attended the conference and presented the poster. The poster focused on discussing lessons learned from using computational and collaborative GbCC models to engage preservice teachers in thinking about complex phenomena. The researchers found that by drawing models, participants were able to demonstrate sophisticated reasoning about disease transfer in dynamic social systems as well as demonstrating computational thinking through abstraction and development of rules for agent-classes.
Around 200 individuals were in attendance for the 2 hour poster session, and many stopped by to discuss the many avenues to developing computational thinking in preservice teachers, a necessary step to developing computational thinking with younger audiences. The conference occurred from Monday afternoon until Friday evening.