CAPE research at the 18th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS)

 In Research

Teju Adesida, Erin Preston, Lora Cawelti, and Phoebe Chew

CAPE engages external, university-based researchers who work with our program staff to create research plans, define methods of measurement, and collect, analyze, and report on data from our classrooms. This approach to arts education research allows us to continually improve our programs and contribute proven best practices back to the field.

Recent research findings were presented at the 18th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS) in Buffalo, New York, by CAPE’s external research team of the after-school program, Creativity Labs at University of California Irvine, composed of Lora Cawelti, Kylie Peppler, Phoebe Chew, with CAPE Associate Director of Education, Community Programs and Research, Teju Adesida.

The poster presentation “Positionality Shifts through Theatre Arts Practices” and the conference presentation “Co-creating Space in Virtual Culinary Afterschool” hone in on understanding educator positionality for socially just learning, and the potential for co-creation of more equitable arts learning spaces, respectively.

CAPE researcher of the Artist/Researcher Partners Program Erin Preston, Independent Educational Research Consultant and Doctoral Student at the Department of Educational Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago presented the poster “Trust me, this is gonna become something”: Agency through Un/learning with Materials in Arts Integration,” an investigation with teaching artist Jordan Knecht. This research piece considers perspectives of student empowerment through their interactions with art materials, and their art practices as expansive of sensorial awareness.

The 2024 Annual Meeting theme “Learning as a cornerstone of healing, resilience, and community” recognizes the continuing need to respond to global crises, including especially COVID-19 but also war, climate change, and political oppression.” Learn more about the conference at

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