Week 6 — Pre-Thesis

Nelson James
3 min readMar 24, 2021

For the past few weeks, I’ve spent the majority of my time looking into research and finalizing my idea. So this week, after looking into I decided to sort of finalize the plan after doing a few rounds of prototyping.

Problem: Teachers need better and more equitable options to cater to the diverse needs of students. Teachers are not able to truly personalize lessons due to the diverse needs of students, examples include: IEP’s, ESOL, ESE, etc.

Solution: Using technology, teachers will be able to build personalized educational plans for students that will also cater towards the students individual needs to achieve mastery in those designated subjects. Using innovative practices of learning, the solution will include retention-based methods with an emphasis on mastery of concepts. The approach itself we be mostly adaptive, but will employ gamification as a tool to enhance interest within the learning platform.

I’ve also included to get some feedback on the prototype sketches below and am currently waiting feedback via Google forms on what should be intereated for the demo. I’m also currently looking at tutorials to help further develop my skills so that I’m able to build out the components of the demo. I’ll post the results of the review once I’ve received feedback from the 12 teachers I sent the information too.

Video — Interactive Video: the video will introduce students to parts of a cell and how they function, throughout the video using gamification, students will be asked questions that takes them through a personalized journey of learning about the cell. Based on whether the question is correct or not students will get another stab at the game and be presented with similar questions that ensure that each part of the cell has been presented to the student and that the students understand how each part of the cell works. The teacher will have a dashboard that provides an overview of students progress and notes any concerns to certain portions of the standards that might need to be followed up with students.

VR/AR Experience — Visualizing the Cell: students will be presented with a VR/AR experience that allows them to dissect the cell and explore how they function within real-world contexts. Throughout the experience, students will be asked questions in which they will respond and the experience will also adapt based on accuracy. The goal here is for students to immerse themselves into the cell and get a clearer understanding of the parts and it’s functions as shown in the previous portion of the lesson.

Experiment — Create a Model Cell: as an offline activity, and similar to what many teachers have done before students will build out a their own model of a cell noting the differnent parts of the cell and its functions. It’s important to note here that hands-on learning is really effective, and I’m not arguing to remove hands-on learning, I’m just saying it’s use can be integrated more successfully in terms of accessibility. Students can use tech to create their model cell or physical items — this would be up to the teacher and the resources of the students.

Testing/Reinforcement — Game-Based Quiz: as a reinforcement tool students will undergo and interactive journey related to the topic of cells where they will address certain questions that will allow them to complete an activity and retain game-based points. Again, teachers will have access to a dashboard that notes the process. The important thing here is positive reinforcement regardless if a student got the question wrong or right, the goal is not to punish the student, but rather the ensure the content is understood through adaptive testing.