Research News

UW-Madison's Halverson profiled in CIRCL e-newsletter

December 05, 2016
The Center for Innovative Research in Cyber Learning (CIRCL) recently profiled UW-Madison’s Erica Halverson in its November 2016 e-newsletter.

Erica Halverson 2015
In the CIRCL report Halverson, an associate professor with the School of Education’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction, explains how her “background is in the arts and learning. I got my Ph.D. in Learning Sciences, but my disciplinary focus had been applying insights and questions in the learning sciences to a range of art making disciplines. My original art form was live theatre, but through my involvement in a MacArthur Foundation Grant I had the opportunity to study digital media art production, which is how I became interested in technology.”

The profile chronicles Halverson's research on makerspaces and how it evolved over time, exploring how to implement new learning activities into existing practices. Makerspaces are an "emerging phenomenon that takes the DIY ethos and transfers it into a learning environment."

One concern Halverson has moving forward is how to fit the maker movement into schools without putting it into a box with too many constraints, because "students who have greater freedom in making are more inspired and dedicated to their learning process."

The Center for Innovative Research in Cyberlearning (CIRCL), located at SRI International in partnership with Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC) and NORC at the University of Chicago, works to support, synergize and amplify the efforts of projects in the emerging field of cyberlearning, a field that seeks to integrate emerging technology capabilities and learning sciences insights to address the pressing needs to increase learning in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. CIRCL is funded by the NSF Cyberlearning Program and by other programs across NSF that fund cyberlearning-themed projects.