Putting the Stars within Reach Using NASA 3D Data-Based Models

Kimberly K. Arcand


This study investigated the quantifiable effects of data-based 3D models and prints on spatial reasoning skills and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields, for n = 100 youths aged 9-12 (99 female and 1 non-binary), primarily from traditionally underrepresented groups in STEM. In a pre-post design, participants engaged in workshops using data-based astrophysical 3D models delivered via computer-based interactions, virtual reality, and 3D prints. Multivariate ANOVAs yielded significantly increased STEM interest but were not significant for increasing spatial ability. The results are discussed in terms of the need to extend exposure and science communications to STEM activities to female youths that are younger than middle school aged.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.22158/csm.v5n2p37


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