TRAK: A Mobile/Web STEM Teaching Material Tracking System

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TRAK: A Mobile/Web STEM Teaching Material Tracking System. Juan Huertas Fernandez | tue89164@temple.edu Justin Shi | shi@temple.edu Doug Baird | dbaird@temple.edu Temple University Computer & Information Sciences & TUteach. STEM Instructional Materials.
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TRAK: A Mobile/Web STEM Teaching Material Tracking SystemJuan Huertas Fernandez | tue89164@temple.eduJustin Shi | shi@temple.eduDoug Baird | dbaird@temple.eduTemple University Computer & Information Sciences & TUteachSTEM Instructional Materials
  • Inquiry-based STEM instruction requires a large inventory of instructional materials.
  • Problems
  • What do we have and where is it stored?
  • Keeping track of what’s in and what’s being used by whom
  • When do we need to order more disposable items?
  • Developing a materials Management system
  • Tried to use an off the shelf bar-code system—never got it to work properly
  • Approached computer science faculty who teach computer science project courses---could a student develop a materials management system?
  • Dr. Justin Shi: Yes!
  • Met regularly with Justin, Juan and TUteach Staff. Discussed how the system should work.
  • Specifications for Trak system
  • Web-based
  • Real-time updating of inventory with reporting capabilities
  • Identify items via QR codes that can be read by mobile devices: items might be returned and online inventory updated even in storage room, away from a computer.
  • Sign-out items to users via ID card swipe
  • Students requests items at their computer or mobile device
  • Instructor notified by email, reviews, approves, or modifies request
  • Studio receives requests via web app, alerts students when items are ready via text message or email
  • Proposed Solution
  • Web/Mobile portal with emphasis on Web (HTML5 + CSS3 + Javascript + PHP + MySQL + PhoneGap)
  • Use scanner and camera for inventory management
  • One undergraduate + one faculty + a ton of collaboration with TUteach folks
  • Dynamic User Interface
  • A single UI with context-sensitive dynamic controls
  • Multiple data capture points
  • Demonstration of Trak
  • Role playing: how do students use TRAK to request, sign-out and return items when practice teaching?
  • Impact on Computer Science Students
  • Mobile/Web programming students are eager to solve real world problems
  • Multiple independent studies (from Fall 2013-Summer 2014)
  • Improved skill sets -> new features for better efficiency (from Web to mobile + Web)
  • Contribution to the Open Source community
  • Sustainable Inventory management
  • Provide Open Source tool to Schools and Universities at No Cost
  • Offer Services:
  • Customization
  • Consulting
  • TRAK hosting
  • STEM Relevance
  • Agile tracking reduces time and material waste due to loss and damage
  • Effective inventory management shifts the administrative energy from “how to keep the house in order” to “how to use items more effectively”
  • Easily searchable, web/mobile accessible inventory will allow students & instructors to be more creative in curriculum design and make better use of existing inventory: spend less time finding/obtaining materials, more time on developing lessons
  • Acknowlegments
  • Lan Nguyen, TUteach Program Staff
  • CIS1052, CIS2305 and Apps and Maps Studios, Temple University
  • The Verizon Foundation
  • Questions ?
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