MAKERSPACES - Coggle Diagram
WHAT IS IT?
A makerspace is a physical location where people gather to share resources and knowledge, work on proj- ects, network, and build.
The makerspace—sometimes referred to as a hackerspace—is often associated with fields such as engineering, computer sci- ence, and graphic design.
This idea of a collaborative studio space for creative endeavors has caught hold in education, where the informal combination of lab, shop, and conference room form a compelling argument for learning through hands-on exploration.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Makerspaces are often open for informal, unscheduled activity; in some cases, an organization will host scheduled classes in a makerspace.
These classes are generally not for credit and focus on a single skill, such as coding, soldering, or woodcarving.
Used by students, faculty, and staff, makerspaces have become arenas for informal, project-driven, self-directed learn- ing, providing workspace to tinker, try out solutions, and hear input from colleagues with similar interests.
WHO´S DOING IT?
The makerspace emerged initially as a powerful learning force in the nonacademic community.
One member supported effort that reflects that origin is the Milwaukee Makerspace, which invites the public to attend meetings. Members see sharing and learning skills as a key purpose of their makerspace, resulting in a dynamic studio environment that builds member projects, which have included electronic modifications to musical instruments, mini robots, giant wind chimes, a biodiesel reactor, and an electric car.
At Wheaton College, for exam- ple, the WHALE Lab (Wheaton Autonomous Learning Lab) is an interdisciplinary makerspace where students embroider, solder, weld, sculpt, or otherwise design and manufacture cre- ative projects. The emphasis is on community-provided mutual assistance, and the output from student activity might be a robot or a knitted sweater that lights up.
WHY IS IT SIGNIFICANT?
Makerspaces are zones of self-directed learning.
Interaction among inventors at these facilities fosters a highly collaborative learning dynamic that is excellent for team efforts and for peer support, advice, and assistance.
WHAT ARE THE DOWNSIDES?
Space in learning facilities is often at a premium, and cost is a consideration in setting up an area for making.
High-end 3D printers that print with a variety of media can be expensive
Smaller, more affordable 3D printers generally cre- ate only small items, often from a single medium in only one color.
Some of these machines can be danger- ous, too, raising liability issues.
WHERE IS IT GOING?
Eventually makerspaces may become linked from campus to campus, encouraging joint project collaboration.
Video may invite input from re- mote experts, and teleoperation may enable manipulation of machinery from afar.
Students who use these studios to create tangible portfolio piec- es may find their work of interest to future employers.
WHAT ARE THE IMPLICATIONS FOR TEACHING AND LEARNING?
The makerspace gives room and materials for physical learn- ing. Because these spaces can easily be cross-disciplinary, stu- dents in many fields can use them, often finding technical help for work they are undertaking in their areas.
Makerspaces allow students to take control of their own learning as they take ownership of projects they have not just designed but defined.
Where makerspaces exist on campus, they provide a physical laboratory for inquiry-based learning.