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Overview/Historical Information

Handhelds Go to School: Lessons Learned
Deborah Tatar, Jeremy Roschelle, Phil Vahey, William R. Penuel, September 2003
In addition to meeting educational needs, classroom use of mobile devices introduces a range of challenges beyond the established Internet and Web paradigm. Innovations addressing the challenges related to network infrastructure, functionality, control, and the classroom user experience can spread to other social, informal uses of networked handhelds.
IEEE Computer Society, Computer, Vol. 36, No. 9

Probeware Takes a Seat in the Classroom: Educational Impact of Probes Improves with Time and Innovation
Robert Tinker and Stephen Bannasch, Winter 2002
For many years we have been developing probeware--probes, sensors, interfaces, supporting software, and related curricula for classroom lab activities. However, we have never seen anything like the burst of creativity that is currently driving innovation in this area. Eventually, these new developments will drive down the costs, increase the usability, and greatly improve the educational impact of probeware.

A History of Probeware
Robert Tinker (Concord Consortium), June 2000
The is first review of the development and dissemination of probeware in education. The article summarizes what has been learned about probeware to guide educators and researchers interested in this area, provides important insights for policy-makers and funders, and acknowledges contributors to the development of this field.

Science in the Palms of Their Hands
Elliot Soloway (U. Michigan), Wayne Grant (ImagiWorks), Robert Tinker (Concord Consortium), Jeremy Roschelle (SRI), Mike Mills (IDEO), Mitchell Resnick (MIT Media Lab), Robbie Berg (Wellesley College), & Michael Eisenberg (U. of Colorado), August 1999
A set of short reports from the above authors on computational tools, based on handheld devices, that enable children to collect data outside the classroom, enabling children to conduct investigations they were not able to before.
Communications of the ACM
, Volume 42, Issue 8





Probesight Bibliography
The Concord Consortium
A comprehensive bibliography of the literature on probes and sensors in education compiled by the Concord Consortium.

UC Berkeley Handheld & Mobile Devices Literature List
Links to published research on handhelds and mobile devices in education.

 Learning from Handhelds: Findings from Classroom Research
Phil Vahey and Valery Crawford, SRI International, 2003
Researchers from SRI International have been researching handheld use in classrooms. Their findings showed that, "handheld technology has a beneficial impact on the classroom learning environment. Teachers reported greater student engagement, more effective collaboration, and increased student autonomy when handheld computers are thoughtfully integrated into the classroom."

CyberTracker in BioKIDS: Customization of a PDA-based Scientific Data Collection Application for Inquiry Learning
Cynthia Sims Parr, Tricia Jones and Nancy Butler Songer, 2002
This paper documents our efforts to customize CyberTracker--a PDA application originally designed for conservation biology data collection--for use within an inquiry learning environment: the BioKIDS curriculum.
In P. Bell, R. Stevens, and T. Satwicz (Eds.), Keeping Learning Complex: The Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference of Learning Sciences (ICLS), pp. 574-5. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.

 Palm Education Pioneer (PEP) Final Report
SRI International, November 2002
The goals of the Palm Education Pioneer (PEP) program program were (1) to determine whether classroom teachers find handheld computers a useful educational tool, and (2) to aggregate the knowledge base of a large set of teachers using handheld computers in their classroom. This, the final report on the PEP program, is intended to provide information to those interested in the benefits and drawbacks of handheld computers in the classroom.

Beyond Black Boxes: Bringing Transparency and Aesthetics Back to Scientific Investigation
Mitchel Resnick (MIT Media Lab), Robbie Berg (Wellesley College), & Michael Eisenberg (U. of Colorado), 2000
From abstract: “We analyze how students, by building their own scientific instruments, can pursue a broader range of scientific investigations of their own choosing, feel a stronger sense of personal investment in their scientific investigations, and develop deeper critical capacities in evaluating scientific measurements and knowledge.” Students include sensors in the design of their instruments to collect data.





Portable Technologies: Science Learning in Context
Robert Tinker (Concord Consortium) and Joseph Krajcik (University of Michigan), Editors
Students tend to acquire inert, decontextualized knowledge that they cannot apply to real problems. The obvious solution to this shortcoming is to reverse the situation and bring the classroom to the phenomena: to learn in a rich, real-world context. The problem with the real world is that it is complex and filled with interactions that are hard to sort out. The editors and authors believe that the right tools might help students with this sorting process and result in learning in rich contexts. This book is an account of a series of experiments designed to explore the validity of this insight.

Network Science, A Decade Later
Alan Feldman, Cliff Konold, Bob Coulter, Brian Conroy, Charles Hutchison, & Nancy London
Network Science, A Decade Later reviews the current practice of network science and takes a broader look at the use of technology in science learning. The first part of the book describes the history and current practice of network science. The second section extends the researchers’ inquiry into network science by examining discourse and data in depth. It offers ways to support class discussions and looks at what it takes to bring students to the data and keep data analysis on track. The final chapter focuses on the question: How should the Internet be used—and not used—to support student learning?