Playmeans: Inclusive and Engaging Data Science Through Music

Tuesday, May 16th, 20234:00 pm – 4:30 pm ET

Presented by: Davit Khachatryan (Babson College)


This month, in the CAUSE (Consortium for the Advancement of Undergraduate Statistics Education) / JSDSE (Journal of Statistics and Data Science Education) webinar series, Dr. Davit Khachatryan discusses his web application (and paper): Playmeans. According to decades of research in educational psychology, learning is a social process that is enhanced when it happens in contexts that are familiar and relevant. But because of the skyrocketing popularity of data science, professors today often work with students coming from an abundance of academic concentrations, professional, and personal backgrounds. How can teaching account for the existing multiplicity of interests and be inclusive of diverse cultural, socioeconomic, and professional backgrounds? Music is a convenient medium that can engage and include. Enter Playmeans, a novel web application (“app”) that enables students to perform unsupervised learning while exploring music. The flexible user interface lets a student select their favorite artist and acquire, in real time, the corresponding discography in a matter of seconds. The student then interacts with the acquired data by means of visualizing, clustering, and, most importantly, listening to music—all of which are happening within the novel Playmeans app.