ABOUT DYN

 

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DIGITAL LITERACY IS THE NEW LITERACY

The Digital Youth Network (DYN) was founded in 2006 by Dr. Nichole Pinkard at the University of Chicago’s Urban Education Institute.

DYN is a project that supports organizations, educators and researchers in learning best practices to help develop our youths’ technical, creative, and analytical skills.

Originating from the keen desire to understand and support urban youth in learning digital media for their educational development, DYN grew as a resource to help youth understand how to use digital media for all aspects of their lives. As technology rapidly evolves, supporting our underprivileged youth in school and out of the classroom has become a critical and timely issue to address. Currently underprivileged students live under the following statistics:

  • 47% of low-income households have broadband access at home.
  • 37% of teachers of low-income students use tablet computers.
  • 35% of teachers of lower-income students say their students use cell phones as a learning device in class.

In an effort to resolve these conditions, we have created iRemix social learning network for students in formal and informal settings; Co-founded YOUmedia – along with the Chicago Public Library – to develop innovative spaces for youth; and implemented Chicago City of Learning – with Chicago’s Mayor’s Office – to join together learning opportunities for youth.

Currently we are creating a blueprint for Cities of Learning to model Chicago City of Learning, releasing DYN’s book in spring 2014 and launching DYN Studio at DePaul University in winter 2014.

Our goal is to create an equal platform for ALL to be digitally literate.



Research Areas:

NEWS

CCOT-Logo2-BLU

Mayor Rahm Emanuel launched the Chicago City of Learning (CCOL) Month of Code Challenge to all Cities of Learning today to encourage young people to explore the science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) fields. Through CCOL, youth have the opportunity to earn digital badges by building video games, interactive stories, and mobile apps between July 9 and August 8, 2014.   More Information Here


Giving youth the tools to be engaged, articulate, critical and collaborative

INITIATIVES

Empowering Youth Through Media Production and Critique

 Our pods are production oriented, meaning students learn these new skills through the process of creating. Our mentors have developed scaffolded-learning experiences that allow students to learn the basics or choose to become experts in any medium over time.

DIGITAL DIVAS
Current Program / Fashion
DYN Studio
Current Program / Poetry / Design
DIGITAL QUEENDOM
Past Program
Robotics
Past Program / Game
DYN TV
Past Program / Film
C21
Past Program / Writing

Facilitate the ability to become creators, designers, builders & innovators

TOOLS

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iRemix 

iRemix is a cloud-based social learning platform available to schools and organizations seeking to safely connect youth with extended learning and mentorship opportunities. Create your own customized private social learning network that is completely controlled by you.

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ExploreChi 

ExploreChi is a space for youth to build new skills and discover new interests. Users can take on media production challenges at their own pace, get feedback from expert mentors and earn badges to represent the media skills they’re developing.

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CurateIt 

CurateIt is an online gallery & learning tool designed in collaboration with the Art Institute of Chicago, Little Black Pearl & Yollacalli Arts Reach.

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Spokes 

Spokes is a tool for growing from a consumer into a media producer. Build shelves of your favorites & create original media in response.

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xDiscovery

Social discovery tool empowering youth to find and participate in new learning activities in their city.

Experience Discovery (xDisc) is a social discovery tool empowering youth to find, share and engage in new learning opportunities across the city. xDisc goes beyond simply presenting a list of programs to users, it builds on their interests and social connections to suggest new pathways of participation.

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Envision new possibilities

OUR TEAM

NICHOLE PINKARD
Program Founder, Associate Professor DePaul University, College of CDM
AKILI LEE
Co-Founder + Director of Digital Strategy & Development
TENE GRAY
Director of Operations & Professional Development
SYBIL MADISON-BOYD
Learning Pathways Program Director
CAILTLIN K MARTIN
Lead Researcher
MIKE HAWKINS
Youth Engagement Coordinator
TRE EVERETTE
Lead Developer
AVRI COLEMAN
Community Manager
UGOCHI ACHOLONU
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
ASIA ROBERSON
Curriculum Developer - Badge Pathways Program
JIM SANDHERR
Research Assistant - Badge Pathways Program
CAROLINA GONZALEZ
Mentor
DENISE C. NACU
Educational Designer
ERALEE RIVERA
User Experience Researcher
TAYLOR KLASSMAN
Project Coordinator Chicago City of Learning

Contact

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© Copyright 2014 Digital Youth Network