Integrating computing into science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education at the K-12 level is critical to creating a competitive, innovative workforce that is capable of the computational thinking needs of the future. Efforts to increase intrinsic interest in math and data science have proven difficult to apply evenly across gender, race, and socio-economic factors. This research project will assist in creating a more stable, ethical, and inclusive data science workforce by broadening the interest in data science to a more diverse population of students. This research spans the fields of game design, human computer interaction, machine learning, curriculum design and educational assessment by integrating STEM+C based curriculum directly into “Minecraft”. It advances the knowledge in game-based learning by building on techniques and experiences from commercial game design. The game and infrastructure produced through this research will serve as a vital computing resource for middle and high school educators that will be sustained beyond the current project.


National Science Foundation has awarded SMU Researchers: Corey Clark, Ph.D., Leanne Ketterlin Geller, Ph.D. and Eric Larson, Ph.D. a $1,521,615 (Award Number: 1933848) 4 year grant to research teaching computer science and computational thinking via Minecraft.

Principal Investigators

Dr. Leanne Ketterlin Geller, Simmons School of Education; Dr. Corey Clark, Guildhall &Lyle School of Engineering; and Dr. Eric Larson, Lyle School of Engineering