This month, in the CAUSE (Consortium for the Advancement of Undergraduate Statistics
Education) / JSDSE (Journal of Statistics and Data Science Education) webinar series, we
highlight the research article, SCRATCH to R: Toward an Inclusive Pedagogy in Teaching
Coding. In the webinar, Shu-Min Liao will introduce SCRATCH, a kid-friendly visual
programming language developed by the Media Lab at MIT. SCRATCH was designed to introduce
programming to children and teens in a “more thinkable, more meaningful, and more social”
way. Although it was initially intended for K-12 students, educators have used it for
higher education as well, and found it particularly helpful for those who haven’t had the
privilege of learning coding before college. In this presentation, Dr. Liao will discuss
using SCRATCH as a gateway to learning R in introductory or intermediate statistics
courses. She will explain the design of her current project and share observations from a
pilot study in a liberal arts college with 39 students who had diverse coding experiences.
She found that the most disadvantaged students were not those with no coding experience,
but those with poor prior coding experience or with low coding self-efficacy. This
innovative SCRATCH-to-R approach also offers instructors a pathway toward an inclusive
pedagogy in teaching coding.
Article Link https:
Presented By: Shu-Min Liao (Amherst College)
Shu-Min Liao is an Assistant Professor of Statistics at Amherst College. Her research
interests include fully nonparametric theory and methodology, model-free multivariate
dependence measures for categorical data, and STEM education research focused on DEIA
(Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility) topics.
The webinar will take place on October 18th, from 4:00-4:30 pm EDT.
Registration is required but is free. Registration link is here:
We hope that you can join us.
Leigh Johnson (Capital University)
Moderator, CAUSE/JSDSE Webinar Series