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Graduate Defense: Stacy Dzbenski

March 8 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Dissertation Defense

Dissertation Information

Title: Assessing Experiential Learning in a K-12 Afterschool Makerspace: Using the Beyond Rubrics Toolkit

Program: Doctor of Education in Educational Technology

Advisor: Dr. Ross Perkins, Educational Technology

Committee Members: Dr. Yu-hui Ching, Educational Technology and Dr. Yu-Chang Hsu, Educational Technology


Makerspaces are environments for creating, designing, and manufacturing. These spaces are becoming more prevalent at all educational levels. makerspaces foster learning through curiosity, play, imagination, and creation through fabrication, experimentation, and tinkering. Despite the integration of STEM learning in makerspaces, research has indicated that learning assessment is difficult in this type of learning environment. The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the effectiveness of the Beyond Rubrics Toolkit (BRT) as a method of assessing learning in makerspaces in an after-school youth program. The theoretical lens of this study was experiential learning and embedded assessment. The study showed that at least in an informal learning setting, given various contextual factors, the BRT was not as useful as it might be otherwise, although some components do have promise if those who use it have better training and more time to use it.