Technological advances are changing the way we collect, view, and interact with data. As a result, data visualizations move far beyond conventional graphs, tables, or diagrams to use problem-specific imagery and computational techniques to reveal patterns of interest. The DataSketch project explores the hypothesis that by exploring and constructing their own novel, interactive data visualizations, students can develop data literacy, learn important core STEM content, and engage in key STEM practices in powerful new ways.
The DataSketch project involves (1) research on grade 6-8 students' knowledge and development related to data visualization, and (2) continued development and study of DataSketch, a tablet-based tool for students to create sketches and program them to respond to archival or live data input to become interactive visualizations. Our goals are to develop a model of students' data visualization competencies, and encourage the development of those competencies in the context of their existing mathematics and science curriculum.