About

Explore a world of creative learning possibilities with augmented reality (AR) technologies.

Dr. Paula MacDowell is a design and technology specialist working on research and advocacy initiatives to empower children and youth through education and technology. I use design-based research methods to create and analyze tools that support youth innovation in addressing humanity’s challenges and opportunities, to achieve sustainable change with and for our communities. Some of the thinkers who inform my work are Paulo Blikstein, Nigel Cross, Catherine Driscoll, Ricki Goldman, Donna Haraway, Yasmin Kafai, Mary Celeste Kearney, Claudia Mitchell, Don Norman, Seymour Papert, Sherry Turkle, Judy Wajcman, and Audrey Watters.

Motivated by a social justice orientation to education and firmly committed to ethical practice, diversity, and equity, I research and design technology-enhanced learning environments (on-site, online, across the curriculum, and across the lifespan). I am currently instructing graduate-level courses in the Master’s program in Educational Technology and Learning Design, as well as undergraduate and pre-service teacher courses in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University. At the heart of my pedagogical practice, I work closely with teachers and instructional designers to develop educational media and integrate technology with curriculum in ways that enhance learner engagement, empowerment, inclusion, and ingenuity.

In addition to presenting a range of talks and workshops at academic and industry conferences worldwide, I am the author of diverse research publications and proceedings that explore issues I care deeply about, including: computing education, design education, media arts, media design, youth activism, technological innovation in developing countries, and the design of technology-enhanced learning environments (e.g., makerspaces, augmented reality, and virtual worlds).

Paula MacDowell

Specializations
>> Media Arts, Media Design
>> Learning Sciences and Technologies
>> Design of Technology-Enhanced Learning Environments
>> Qualitative, Interpretive, Participatory, and Design-Based Research Methods

Education & Qualifications
>> I maintain current certification as a professional teacher within Canada
>> PhD in Curriculum Studies, The University of British Columbia, April 2015
>> Dissertation: Empowering Girls as Change Makers in Maker Culture