Effects of a summer robotics camp on students’ STEM career interest and knowledge structure
Ahmet Tekbıyık 1 * , Demet Baran Bulut 2, Yalçın Sandalcı 3
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1 Department of Science Education, Kahramanmaraş Sütçü İmam University, Kahramanmaraş, Turkey
2 Department of Mathematics Education, Recep Tayyip Erdogan University, Rize, Turkey
3 Fatma Nuri Erkan Science and Art School, Ministry of National Education, Turkey
* Corresponding Author


The present study focuses on the assessment of summer robotics camp designed for 7th grade students who were supposed to work on a STEM-related problem through modeling and design activities. It was exclusively investigated the effects of these activities on the STEM-related career interests and knowledge structures of students. The students were expected to develop basic robotics and design skills in the camp, and to use them in project design in the context of problem solving processes. The camp activities were designed in the alignment of P3 Task Taxonomy. A mixed design method was adapted in this study as it focused both on the effects of an experimental intervention and identification of the students’ conceptual constructs. Accordingly, simultaneous and sequential data collection techniques were used to provide satisfactory responses to the research questions. The results showed that the students the students’ career interest in engineering increased more significantly than the other STEM fields. Furthermore, word association tests that were applied before and after the camp, in order to assess the change in the students’ knowledge structures with the keywords Coding, Design, Problem, Modeling, Space, and Robot showed that the number of terms associated with these keywords were increased. In a nutshell, the education activity provided in the context of this study reinforced the students’ career interests in engineering in particular, and facilitated the development of their knowledge structures, and ability to define associations between terms.



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