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STEAM Imaging: Art Meets Medical Research: Evaluation Summary



This file provides a summary of the evaluation of the two STEAM workshops called "STEAM Imaging" by Fraunhofer MEVIS in cooperation with the International Fraunhofer Talent School Bremen.
Evaluation Summary
STEAM Imaging:
Art Meets Medical Research
17. Juli 2017
Evaluation Summary STEAM Imaging !
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A Workshop by Fraunhofer MEVIS
For Pupils in Bremen, Germany, and Linz, Austria !
at the Fraunhofer Institute for Medical Image Computing !
and the Ars Electronica Center
In Cooperation with the International Fraunhofer Talent School Bremen
Workshop in Bremen at Fraunhofer MEVIS: 28-29 March 2017
Workshop in Linz at Ars Electronica Center: 8-9 June 2017
Workshop Leaders: Sabrina Haase and Yen Tzu Chang (Artist)
Project Lead & Management: Bianka Hofmann
A brief Dialogue
Our science communication projects such as this workshop are expressions of responsible
research and innovation in medicine. We want to stimulate engagement with, critical dialogue
about, and implementation of new technology in society. The developments in medical technology
are changing our everyday lives in increasingly shorter innovation cycles. We need adaptive,
cross-disciplinary, intergenerational platforms to deal with the implications of these technologies at
an early stage. Team STEAM Imaging
It is important to already start this conversation with school kids. Such workshops and especially
the ethical discussion between pupils, artist, and scientists that took place in the course of the
workshop was an important aspect to trigger this. Inviting an artist to engage with the technology
developed by Fraunhofer MEVIS added a dimension and opens the conversation with a wider
audience and supports the communication by adding new sensory experiences. !
Evaluator Claudia Schnugg
We wanted to assist an artist to complete her work with new technology, a software platform for
medical imaging. Through the school workshop, we brought the artist into contact with new
professional outlets. Team STEAM Imaging
The artist aimed at engaging in a positive communication about recent technological
developments. She wanted to reduce the fear of robotic developments in health care and life
sciences perceived in public. The contextualization within Fraunhofer MEVIS technology
supported her goal and enriched her media artworks with new tools. Evaluator Claudia Schnugg
One aim of the STEAM workshop was to bring STEM topics to pupils interested in art and raise
their awareness of the role of math, physics, and computer science in health care and life
sciences and to show the value of current science and technology for art. Team STEAM Imaging
The workshop raised the awareness of the role of math, physics, and computer science in health
care and life sciences. Pupils also displayed a growing interest in medicine after the workshop
and stated the knowledge they gained about medical technologies as one of the main benefits.
The pupils also learned about the value of current science and technology for art and were
interested in the possibility to combine art and science. However, raised interest in STEM topics
by pupils interested in art is not supported by the data. Evaluator Claudia Schnugg
The pupils used medical image processing technology in an artistic way, and learned about media
art. Team STEAM Imaging
The workshop provided knowledge about medical image processing technology and gave the
opportunity to create an audiovisual media art piece. Pupils learned much about media art and
sound art and how sound can support visual information. In a next step, such a workshop could
provide more time for artistic exploration and interplay of artistic and scientific aspects. An
explorative approach in the artistic creation process also triggered a learning process in
programming skills. Evaluator Claudia Schnugg
Both artist and scientists had the chance to engage and work with the next generation. !
Team STEAM Imaging
Such a workshop format certainly fosters an exchange between generations, especially between
professionals and youth who otherwise would not get in direct contact. The ethical discussion in
these two workshops helped to create a more intense dialogue. Evaluator Claudia Schnugg
Evaluation Summary
Fraunhofer MEVIS collaborated with sound artist Yen Tzu Chang to create a pioneering STEAM
workshop format that complements the successful STEM workshops at International Fraunhofer Talent
School Bremen. The workshop combined medical imaging and visualization methods with sound art. Two
“STEAM Imaging” workshops took place, one in Bremen, 28-29 March 2017, and one in Linz, 8-9 June
2017. Thus, experiences and feedback from Bremen could be considered to improve the workshop format
in Linz. Due to lack of space in Bremen, the pupils had to be divided into two groups: one led by the artist,
one by the scientist. Only during the plenary talks at the beginning and end of the workshop and for lunch
the groups spend time together. The pupils did only partly experience this as STEAM. The workshop
design in Linz thus did not divide the group and all pupils were exposed to both workshop leaders
continuously. This changed their experience essentially. The evaluation is based on a pupil questionnaire
combined with qualitative interviews with key persons and observation of the workshop in Linz.
STEAM Imaging introduced pupils to a problem-centric approach in learning that combined art and
diverse STEM subjects. Pupils claimed that in the workshop they were confronted with the possibility that
mathematics, physics, and informatics can be used to gain knowledge about the body and health for the
first time. The majority also claimed this was their first contact with media art. Prior to the workshop; they
were not aware that mathematics, physics, and informatics could be used as tools or as fundament for
artistic ideas. Interestingly, even pupils who knew that media art existed, did previously not consciously
think about the cross-fertilization between art and STEM. This suggests that such a workshop format is a
relevant tool to make them aware of creating an experience.
It was fun for the pupils to work on topics allowing them to integrate their artistic and STEM knowledge, in
Linz they were so excited they even skipped the breaks except for lunch. Pupils still were hesitant,
however, regarding their willingness to do this at home or whether or not they wanted to repeat such
projects. Although the pupils absorbed the knowledge presented, the same is true for their rating whether
artistic activities help them to better understand STEM subjects, medical questions, and for their
perceived confidence in their artistic skills or STEM knowledge. The pupils in Linz were more positive
about these questions as compared to the ones in Bremen. Intriguingly, in the qualitative part of the
analysis, many pupils of both workshops claimed they learned much about medicine, health, medical
imaging techniques, sound art, and that sound could support visual information.
The mix of methods of theoretical contributions and application-oriented and open/explorative teaching
activities is an important asset to create a holistic experience. It introduced pupils to the fact that
problems are explored and understood by combining knowledge from different subjects. Diverging
answers from Bremen and Linz show that it is important to create a well-balanced agenda of theoretical
contributions and practical tasks in such ambitious workshops. The intense and comprehensive schedule
was doable with the group in Linz, where all pupils were at the same age and had the same educational
background, although some pupils would have required more time to digest all the information. The group
in Bremen with pupils from different schools and different school grades experienced more difficulties.
Finally, the presentation at the end was meaningful in Bremen and Linz to create a goal to work towards
throughout the workshop which concluded by staging the pupils’ achievements. The pupils were
interested in presenting their work to others and to get feedback. The official character of the final event
and the representation in the media also created an important reference point for them.
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