2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Student-Led Makerspace Workshop Platform

Presented at Student Division (STDT) Technical Session 3: Student Innovative Practice

Makerspaces often introduce educational workshops that demonstrate available tools to build users' skills, while fostering collaboration and creativity in the space. A notable challenge in developing workshops in educational makerspace environments stems from finding instructors who are skillful, passionate, and available to teach frequent workshops; with student-run workshops almost completely depending on the pre-established experiences of the instructors and to operate around their individual availabilities. This paper introduces a framework that uses student employees, robust training programs, and workshop documentation to train student instructors on technical and teaching skills. By following this framework, a safe and effective learning space can be created for staff and attendees that build a diverse and welcoming community within the makerspace, while also providing standardization to workshops, ensuring quality, accessibility, and a rolling training platform so every year new employees can be onboarded. This peer-to-peer learning system encourages communication, understanding, and a balance of power between the students and instructors, understood through quantitative and qualitative data from attendee feedback and employee review.

  1. Adam J Murrison Worcester Polytechnic Institute [biography]
  2. Cameron Wian Worcester Polytechnic Institute [biography]
  3. Sydney Kerivan Worcester Polytechnic Institute [biography]
  4. Jakob Sperry Worcester Polytechnic Institute [biography]
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