Learning to See, Seeing to Learn is an interdisciplinary research and development effort to create an innovative new kind of teaching and learning resource for aquatic insect identification to support citizen science identification activities. This National Science Foundation supported project brings together expertise in entomology, learning sciences, software engineering, water quality biomonitoring, and design.
Project Team
Marti Louw, MDes.
Principal Investigator
Director of Learning Media Design Center,
Human Computer Interaction Institute
Jessica Roberts, Ph.D.
Learning Scientist
Post-Doctoral Research Associate,
Human Computer Interaction Institute
Chris Bartley
Software Engineer
Principal Research Programmer,
Robotics Institute CREATE Lab
Kevin Crowley, Ph.D.
Co-Principal Investigator, Learning Scientist
Associate Dean, Professor of Learning Sciences and Policy,
John Morse, Ph.D.
Co-Investigator, Entomologist
Professor Emeritus of Entomology
John Wenzel, Ph.D.
Co-Investigator, Entomologist
Director of Powdermill Nature Reserve
Andrea Kautz
Entomological Imaging Specialist
Research Entomologist
Steve Kerlin, Ph.D.
Co-Investigator, Training Specialist
Director of Education
Tara Muenz
Training Specialist
Assistant Director of Education
Raelynn O'Leary
Design Partner
Adjunct Faculty,
Carnegie Mellon School of Design
Ashley Deal
Design Partner
Adjunct Faculty,
Carnegie Mellon School of Design
Undergraduates and REU Fellows
Nick Addison,
Clemson University, REU
Emily Chan,
Harvard University, REU
Joyce Chen,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Aiqi Cui,
Carnegie Mellon University
Jamie Dorst,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Alice Fang,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Tom Garncaz,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Wei Gong,
Carnegie Mellon University
Grace Guo,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Bo Kim,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Jessy Ma,
Brown University, REU
Jaclyn Saik,
Carnegie Mellon University, REU
Allison Stoiser,
Clemson University, REU
Morgan Summerlin,
Clemson University
Graduate Students
Ahmed Ansari,
Carnegie Mellon University
Maddie Genco,
Clemson University
Jen Liu,
Carnegie Mellon University
Nora Tane,
Carnegie Mellon University
Postdoctoral Researchers
Lauren Allen, Ph.D.,
Carnegie Mellon University
Advisory Panel
Michael Broomall,
Aquatic Entomologist, Stroud Water Research Center
Danielle Donkersloot,
Clean Water Program Director, Izaak Walton League Save Our Streams
Ken Koedginger, Ph.D.,
Faculty, CMU Human-Computer Interaction Institute
Tina Philips,
Research & Evaluation Manager, Public Engagement in Science Program, Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Kris Stepenuck, Ph.D.,
Water Monitoring Extension Leader, University of Vermont
Cathlyn Stylinski, Ph.D.,
Faculty, Center for Environmental Science Appalachian Laboratory, University of Maryland
Codesign Partners
Dan Boward,
Biologist, Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Carl DiSalvo, Ph.D.,
Digital Media and Humanities, Georgia Tech
Kyle Hodgson,
Biologist, Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Melinda Hughes,
President, Nature Abounds/Senior Environmental Corp
Jake Lemon,
MidAtlantic Angler Science Coordinator, Trout Unlimited Cold Water Conservations Corps
Taiji Nelson,
Naturalist Educator, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
Julie Vastine,
Director, Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM), Dickinson College
Project Outputs
Work from this project has been disseminated through publications and presentations to multiple communities, including water monitoring, citizen science, learning sciences, entomology, and human-computer interaction.
Publications & Presentations
Sanford-Dolly, C., Louw, M., & Roberts, J. (Pending). Impacts of an online macro invertebrates observation and identification tool on volunteers' accuracy and confidence in water quality biomonitoring training. Accepted for presentation at the Citizen Science Association Conference, Raleigh, NC, March 2019.
Louw, M., Muenz, T., Roberts, J., Wilson, M., and Kerlin, S. (Pending).Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Identification Trainings for Volunteers: Results of a National Materials and Practices Inventory Survey. Technical report to be published through the Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science. Pittsburgh, PA USA. (CMU-HCII-18-104).
Louw, M. Invited speaker, 2018 OECD Workshop Digital Technology for Science and Innovation — Emerging Topics for Policy and Assessment, 5th - 6th November 2018, Oslo, Norway
Kautz, A.R., Louw, M., Morse, J., Genco, M., and Wenzel, J. (2018) Macroinvertebrates.org: An open-access reference collection of aquatic macroinvertebrates of the Eastern U.S. Symposium: Aquatic Entomology without Borders: A Field That Brings Together All Branches of ESA. Invited poster presented at: Entomological Society of America annual meeting; 14 November 2018. Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Ma, J., Roberts, J. and Louw, M. (2018). Bringing Big Bugs to the Small Screen: User-centered design of a website companion mobile app. Poster presented at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute summer REU showcase, Carnegie Mellon University. Pittsburgh, PA.
Roberts, J., Crowley, K., & Louw, M. (2018) Creating a Visual Representation of Expert Strategies to Inform the Design of Digital Tools for Citizen Science. InProceedings of the 13th International Conference of the Learning Sciences. London, UK. [poster]
Huskinson, D. (2018, May). Life Lessons in Three Dimensions.County Lines Magazine. Retrieved online 10/28/18 from https://countylinesmagazine.com/article/life-lessons-three-dimensions [article]
Kautz, A.R., Wenzel, J., Morse, J., Genco, M. and Louw, M. (2017) An introduction to Macroinvertebrates.org, a digital teaching collection created using gigapixel image technology. Symposium: Aquatic Entomology: Innovative Strategies in Research, Education, and Outreach. Invited talk presented at The Entomological Society of America annual meeting. Denver, CO. 8 November 2017.
Genco, M., Morse, J., Kautz, A., Wenzel, J., Louw, M. (2017) Learning to See...Seeing to Learn: A web-based macroinvertebrate identification training tool. Poster presented at the Annual Conference of the Society of Freshwater Science. Raleigh, NC. 2017. Best Poster Presentation in Applied Research. [poster]
Louw, M., & Crowley, K. (2013). New ways of looking and learning in natural history museums: The use of gigapixel imaging to bring science and publics together. Curator: The Museum Journal, 56(1), 87-104.
Louw, M., Ansari, A., Bartley, C., Sanford, C. (2013) Stories in the Rock: A Design Case for an Explorable Image Viewer in Museums. International Journal of Designs for Learning (4)2. Bloomington, IN: Association for Educational Communications and Technology.
Roberts, J. and Louw, M. (under review) Negotiating the Contested Spaces of a Digital Boundary Object through Co-design.