Exploring Sketching as a Window on Student Understanding

New tablet personal computers, like the iPad, are widely available and making their way into schools. One of the next generation capabilities that we expect to become widely available on these machines is Sketch Understanding, a sketching software that can be used to help people create complex drawings. Our goal is to explore the utility of these computers, and the Sketch Understanding software, to help students create technical drawings. Specifically, we will ask 5th and 6th grade students to read a short science text and to use the tablet PC with Sketch Understanding software to draw a figure from that text. Our hope is to learn more about how to make sketch understanding useful software for school-age users. Data collection will involve the audio recording of interviews concerning science knowledge and usage of the Sketch Understanding software. Dr. Louis Gomez, a professor from the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies and Benny Cooper, a doctoral student at the UCLA GSE&IS, will conduct the research. Any questions about this study should be directed to Benny Cooper, at (310) 206-0199 or bennycooper@ucla.edu.