New methods for hands-on teaching in the history of technology

Awardee: Matthew Hersch (FAS)

Summary: Awardee will develop experiential learning opportunities for students in history of technology courses—HS 182 and HS 189—including in-class demonstration and simulation.

In an effort to demonstrate the continued importance of physical presence and hands-on learning at a time of increasing interest in digital content and online self-directed work, Assistant Professor Matthew Hersch will create experiential learning exercises in two of his courses: HS 182 An American Way of War: Technology and Warfare and HS 189 The World We Made: Technology and Society.

Students in these courses will utilize historical technologies, assemble historical machines, and recreate historical production processes. They will also be able to participate in the fabrication process themselves, constructing historical devices and documenting their use under the supervision of trained graduate students. Hersch will develop a toolkit that can be used by others to enhance course offerings and increase both learning outcomes and student satisfaction.