Building new clubhouses: Opening doors to computing for girls and boys with electronic textiles

Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association

Publication Date



We examine a new type of computer clubhouse where 35 ninth graders aged 14-15 enrolled in workshops designed around learning with e-textiles. We study whether students were able to access computer science through e-textiles and how the ways in which circuitry, coding, and crafting are gendered influenced students’ participation. Our findings indicate that students found initial entry points to computing through one domain of e-textiles (crafting, circuitry, or coding) most often consistent with their own gender, but that this opened the door for them to identify with other domains as well. We unpack the changing relationships students experienced through designing with e-textiles and suggest further ways that e-textiles could be expanded to broaden participation in computing through new clubhouses.

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