Virtual Makerspace Workshops: Practical Lessons for Adapting Content and Technology


Virtual Makerspace Workshops: Practical Lessons for Adapting Content and Technology

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International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces


Conference Paper


The University of Minnesota Libraries manages two makerspaces that are designed to support creative work, experiential learning, and student wellbeing across majors and disciplines. The library makerspaces are not formally integrated with college or departmental curricula, so anyone using the space is doing so completely voluntarily. Because of this, our staff engage in a significant amount of awareness-building and outreach to students, faculty, and staff. Workshops are one of the primary ways we invite users into the library makerspaces. These events – Design for 3D Printing, Podcasting 101, and Bullet Journaling, to name a few – provide a low-barrier way to visit the space, learn a skill, and meet some of our staff. Students come to the university with a variety of perceptions of makerspaces and may have assumptions or associations that originated in primary school. Workshops give us a chance to establish relationships, challenge assumptions about makerspaces, and provide positive experiences for first-time users. When classes and operations went remote in March 2020, our workshops did too. Our staff adapted our lesson plans, learned new technologies, expanded our online presence, and taught hands-on activities in a virtual environment.


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Bishoff, Carolyn; Carlson, Tiffany; Jubara, Rami; Heinz, Charlie. (2021). Virtual Makerspace Workshops: Practical Lessons for Adapting Content and Technology. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy,

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