E-Scientia is an interactive exhibit on electro-technology. The aim is to show high-school students the importance of electrical engineering and to display how electronic devices work, as well as who designs them and how they are manufactured. The exhibit ultimately is intended to generate interest in the electrical, electronics and computer engineering fields by mixing information in an interactive, technological setting.
The exhibit is centered on the Franklin 125 Y module and is a model of a spaceship located at the Espacio Ciencia science museum in Montevideo, Uruguay. Each participant is part of a flight mission, where they must build an electronic device to provide power, propulsion, communications, life maintenance and defense for the spacecraft. The devices are built using educational electronic kits. Prior to the building of the devices, participants undergo a basic training based on a multimedia experience. After the mission is completed, they are shown a video on IEEE. At the end, each participant receives a diploma of “Junior Engineer,” and prizes are handed out for the best performance.
The exhibit’s content has been designed by engineers in Spanish. To enhance the program, a contest to design an English-language translation of the exhibit’s contents will be held, in order to make the exhibit experience both bilingual and universally replicable. The contest will occur in three phases.
In the first phase, secondary-school students from The British School and EIHU-IAHU in Montevideo, along with science and English teachers, a psychologist, museum staff and IEEE volunteers, will assess the present material for the E-Scientia’s program website and exhibit. Once the guidelines for new content are determined, engineering students from student branches of Universidad de la República (state university), Universidad ORT (prívate university) and Universidad Católica del Uruguay (private university) will be eligible to submit to the preliminary content contest, which is the second phase. A task force, over the course of three months, will determine up to four winners.
The four finalists will then enter the third phase of contest, in which material for the website and multimedia content for the E-Scientia platform will be presented over the course of three to four months and assessed by the task force. Winners will be chosen for the web content prize ($2,500), and the multimedia content prize ($2,500). The content will be installed and tested by IEEE volunteers and secondary-school volunteers in the E-Scientia exhibit at Espacio Ciencia.
The Ministry of Culture and Education, the National Administration of Small Businesses, the National Administration of Secondary Schools and the Technological Laboratory of Uruguay (LATU) have endorsed the project.