I had my last meeting with my supervisors yesterday. At this stage I have managed to develop enough tools in the interface to be able to present the idea of my research.
The Upgrade Process
So I have this month to:
- Define my contribution
- Define methodology
- Structure thesis
The thesis should include:
- Problem / Question
- Literature Review
- Expected Results
I am currently doing a Web Science research. Web Science is an interdisciplinary research group. We are studying the Web from different perspectives. In the case of my research, I am trying to understand how can Cultural Heritage institutions can be enhance their engagement and pedagogic activities online. For this there is a wide range of disciplines that I have included in my research.
Human Computer Interaction
Through this approach I am intending to understand how people interact with the computer. Lets remember that on the Web, all interactions occur through an interface. For this reason it is important to study how these interactions might occur.
Human Information Interaction
Under this scope, I intend to produce a better understanding of how people/users relate, and process information. Usually when interfaces are developed designers focus merely on the interaction process without thinking beyond the tool itself. The HCI community has started adopting this process in their methodology but it has not yet been standardised as a design process in HCI.
Pedagogy / Psychology
Among many areas, I am focusing on Embodied Cognition. This thesis presents the idea that the mind is determined by the human body. This is to say that mental processes are not bounded to the mind itself. The body itself is a channel in which the human mind interacts and reasons about the world. This process is also highly linked to Constructivism, where people learn by experience. Constructivist learning experiences have commonly used cognitive processes as a pathway to empower learners. Even though constructivism is not limited to embodiment of activities, it might provide a positive pathway for pedagogic activities.
Enhancing Engagement with Online Museums
Museums as part of the Web are in need of producing meaningful pedagogic activities. The pedagogic element is essential to Cultural Heritage institutions. That is one of their main reasons of funding and even though organisations that are not in the education business can also benefit from such pedagogic activities. Nevertheless, this challenge is not easy to solve. For people to produce knowledge by themselves might not be as straightforward as one might think. There is a wide combination of how people might approach information spaces such as websites, databases, books, etc in order for them to extract knowledge.
By using the aforementioned disciplines in an interdisciplinary manner, I am attempting to produce an tangible user interface where people can be able to ask questions to a linked data system populated with cultural heritage data.