ISTE – Computational Thinking -Interconnected Data Collection


This week of my reflection on ISTE Students Standards for my graduate work in Digital Education Leadership at Seattle Pacific University, I am focused on ISTE standard five and specifically; how can I implement interconnected digital data collection and analysis of the data collected to help facilitate problem-solving and decision-making in my classroom?

ISTE Student Standard 5 is all about Computational Thinking (CT) which is defined in Jeanette Wing’s article from 2006 as “a way of ‘solving’ problems, designing systems, and understanding human behavior by drawing on the concepts fundamental to computer science” (Harrison, pg. 20). 

  • pic.pngProblem decomposition
  • Data representation
  • Modeling
  • Binary Search
  • Recursion
  • Parallelization

There are so many places I see in our day-to-day lives that could be helped by more computational thinking.  For example, the public school teaching application process.  It is a bit of mess in Washington State, and it would be so much nicer if a teacher could fill out one application and then just click all the districts that appeal to them.  This application process also reminds me of how there is something called the Common Application now for applying to colleges.  It would have saved my family so much money and me so much time if I just had one spot on a computer to send my college applications.  Computational thinking and machine learning is expanding rapidly with examples all over the internet like this new project by Magneta where you can play piano duets with a computer.  These all fall under “identifying, analyzing, and implementing possible solutions with the goal of achieving the most efficient and effective combinations of steps and resources” (Harrison, pg 20).  I think that what English Language Arts need to do is get into the business of sharing and building off of ideas to work towards solving problems.  In coding, there is a place called Github where you can store public or private pieces of code that others can use for their projects.  This site is a repository of data that people can build off of so they do not have to waste their time on their projects writing code that other people have already figured out.  Now I wanted to share how some sites like Newsela & UpFront Scholastic (they have much more extensive text sets but your district has to provide you with a login and pay the subscription fee) are sharing sets of text to help students find research material faster and more efficiently.  But what I am thinking now is about going a step further with student research information.  Originally published in the Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication, the paper called Making Student Research Data Discoverable: A Pilot Program Using Dataverse is what I am wanting when it comes to student research work.   This pilot service tested the appropriateness of Dataverse, a data repository, as a data archiving and access solution for Emory University.  It is difficult to get students excited about writing about problem-solving or certain topics because they think that someone else has already done all the work somewhere else and are continually feeling apathy because “someone has probably already done that before” students want to feel unique and special in their work.  They want to feel like what they are researching is worthwhile and could count towards something in the long run.  I think that these feelings are logical and we should take more accountability in terms of what we assign to students.  A repository like this and “in the interest of replication and research transparency, data sets are being included as supplements to electronic theses and dissertations submissions” (Kowalski, pg. 2).  As in computational thinking, this binds both data management practices and effective problem-solving skills.  In my mind, students would start to collect data they could share.  Perhaps it is just a grade level survey or journalistic interview done with someone in the field.  But all these pieces will help students feel like they are working together across districts and maybe even across the country to help to further their pursuits. 

For Emory University Dataverse “provides a place for researchers to deposit datasets, receive a permanent identifier, include references to related publications, and be assured of a commitment to keeping the data accessible and preserved” (Kowalski, pg.9). I think that a product like would be a great place to put these datasets for other students will have access.  I would like to have an archive for data generated at public schools that do not have an appropriate disciplinary repository, particularly for researchers seeking to comply with funder requirements and journal policies.


  • Barr, D., Harrison, J., & Conery, L. (2011). Computational thinking: A digital age skill for everyone. Learning & Leading with Technology, 38(6), 20-23.
  • Doty, J., Kowalski, M. T., Nash, B. C., & O’Riordan, S. F. (2015). Making Student Research Data Discoverable: A Pilot Program Using Dataverse [Scholarly project]. In JLSC. Retrieved February 20, 2017, from file:///Users/autumnbangerter/Downloads/94-183-1-SM.pdf

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