Tailoring Full STEAM Ahead Empowerment: Creative Coding for 21st Century Girls





STEAM, Art & Tech, Creative Learning, Live Coding, Social Capital, Mentorship


INTRODUCTION: This paper provides a comprehensive examination of the Creative Coding project’s impact on female empowerment.
OBJECTIVES: The project addresses the gender disparity in STEAM fields by integrating coding and art for girls aged 10-15, using the Strudel tool that combines real-time live coding and music composition.
METHODS: Through observation and interviews with the girls who participated and performed at the end of the Creative Coding project, but also with those who dropped out, we cast a deep look into the positive and negative parameters to tailor concrete measures for every girl empowerment - not only super achievers. We collaborated with teachers and female mentors from the Computer Science and Engineering Department as relatable role models, to support feelings of belonging and spark curiosity. Using the new user-friendly Strudel tool that supports the integration of art, music, and audio-visual elements, we aimed at an engaging learning experience. To tailor new actions and increase attrition we used a mess map for analysis of the wicked problem of dropouts. Finally, collaboration among the girls and peer learning were expected as by-product effects.
RESULTS: Positive outcomes include increased interest, self-confidence, creativity, and aspirations in STEAM subjects among the girls. However, a more comprehensive and supportive environment is recognized as necessary to engage a broader group of girls in STEAM activities. The findings highlight the importance of cultivating curiosity, providing mentorship, promoting inclusivity and collaboration, and integrating creativity in education to inspire and empower girls in coding and STEAM disciplines.
CONCLUSION: The paper concludes by emphasizing the potential of Creative Coding practices and the audio-visual perception of music to enhance girls’ empowerment, creativity, and interest in coding and STEAM fields.


Adler, K., Salanterä, S., & Zumstein-Shaha, M.: Focus group interviews in child, youth, and parent research: An integrative literature review. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 18, 1609406919887274 (2019)

Alderson, P., Morrow, V.: The Ethics of Research with Children and Young People: A Practical Handbook. Sage (2020)

Bazler, J., & Van Sickle, M. L.: Cases on STEAM education in practice. IGI Global.doi:10.4018/978-1-5225-2334-5 (2017)

Bertrand, Marja G., and Immaculate K. Namukasa. "A pedagogical model for STEAM education." Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching & Learning 16.2 (2023): 169-191.

Bloom, B. S.: The 2 Sigma Problem: The Search for Methods of Group Instruction as Effective as One-to-One Tutoring. Educational Researcher, 13(6), 4–16 (1984)

Catterall, L.G.: A Brief History of STEM and STEAM from an Inadvertent Insider. The STEAM Journal 3(1), 5 (2017)

Catalano, Richard F., et al. "The importance of bonding to school for healthy development: Findings from the Social Development Research Group." Journal of school health 74 (2004): 252-261.

Chiang, Chien-Jen, et al. "Social bonds and profiles of delinquency among adolescents: Differential effects by gender and age." Children and Youth Services Review 110 (2020): 104751.

Clarke, V., Braun, V., Hayfield, N.: Thematic Analysis. In: Qualitative Psychology: A Practical Guide to Research Methods, 3rd edn., pp. 222-248. Springer (2015)

Connor, Andy M., et al. "Full STEAM ahead a manifesto for integrating arts pedagogics into STEM education." 2014 IEEE International Conference on Teaching, Assessment and Learning for Engineering (TALE). IEEE, 2014.

Cook, K., Bush, S., Cox, R.: Engineering Encounters: From STEM to STEAM. Science and Children 54(6), 86-93 (2017)

Chalmers University of Technology: Creative Coding - Chalmers University of Technology. [Online]. Available: https://www.chalmers.se/en/collaborate-with-us/activities-for-schools/creative-coding/ (2023)

Crayton, J.: Designing for immersive technology: Integrating art and STEM learning (2015)

De Witte, M., Spruit, A., van Hooren, S., Moonen, X., & Stams, G. J.: Effects of music interventions on stressrelated outcomes: a systematic review and two metaanalyses. Health psychology review, 14(2), 294-324 (2020)

In X. Ge, D. Ifenthaler, & J. Spector , Emerging technologies for STEAM education. Educational communications and technology: Issues and innovations, 383–396. Springer.doi:10.1007/978-3-319-02573-5-20

Gruber, M.J., Valji, A., Ranganath, C.: Curiosity and Learning: A Neuroscientific Perspective. In: Proceedings of the Conference on Curiosity in Science and Beyond, pp. 397–417 (2019)

Horn, R. E., Weber, R. P. (2007). New tools for resolving wicked problems: Mess mapping and resolution mapping processes. Watertown, MA: Strategy Kinetics LLC.

Kanellopoulou, Catherine, and Andreas Giannakoulopoulos. "Engage and conquer: An online empirical approach into whether intrinsic or extrinsic motivation leads to more enhanced students’ engagement." Creative Education 11.02 (2020): 143.

Land, M. H.: Full STEAM ahead: The benefits of integrating the arts into STEM. Procedia Computer Science, 20, 547-552 (2013)

Leavy, A., Dick, L., Meletiou-Mavrotheris, M., Paparistodemou, E., & Stylianou, E.: The prevalence and use of emerging technologies in STEAM education: A systematic review of the literature. Journal of Computer-Assisted Learning (2023)

Liao, C.: From interdisciplinary to transdisciplinary: An arts-integrated approach to STEAM education. Art Education, 69(6), 44–49 (2016)

Lluch, A. M., Lluch, C., Arregui, M., Jiménez, E., & Giner-Tarrida, L.: Peer mentoring as a tool for developing soft skills in clinical practice: A 3-year study. Dentistry Journal, 9(5), 57 (2021)

Marić, J.: Web communities, immigration, and social capital (2014)

Maric, J., Rani, L.M. Coding Music For No Stress Learning. Proc. SMM23, Workshop on Speech, Music and Mind 2023, 6-10, doi: 10.21437/SMM.2023-2 (2023)

Marić, J.: Digital Storytelling in Interdisciplinary and Inter-institutional Collaboration-Lessons from our Youngest. Cult. Manag. Sci. Educ, 4, 129-144 (2020)

Maric, J.: Who wants to grow old in Welfare Sweden?. In European Conference on Social Media (Vol. 9, No. 1, pp.130-136) (2022, April)

Maric, J., & Rani, L. M.: The Wicked Problem of Dropouts. Accepted for publication in Extended Abstracts of the CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA ’24), May 11–16, 2024, Honolulu, HI, USA. ACM, New York, NY, USA, 8 pages. doi:10.1145/3613905.3637129 (2024)

Millar, V., Hobbs, L., Speldewinde, C., and van Driel, J.: Stakeholder perceptions of mentoring in developing girls’ STEM identities: “You do not have to be the textbook scientist with a white coat”. International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, 11(4), 398-413 (2022)

Olivier, Elizabeth, et al. "Internalizing and externalizing behavior problems and student engagement in elementary and secondary school students." Journal of youth and adolescence 49 (2020): 2327-2346.

Ruthmann, S. A.: The Routledge companion to music, technology, and education. A. King, E. Himonides, & A. Ruthmann (Eds.). New York and Abingdon: Routledge (2017)

Saline, M., Sheeran, M., & Wittung-Stafshede, P.: A large ‘discovery’ experiment: Gender Initiative for Excellence (Genie) at Chalmers University of Technology. QRB Discovery, 2, E5 (2021). doi:10.1017/qrd.2021.3

Salmon, G.: May the fourth be with you: Creating education 4.0. Journal of Learning for Development, 6(1), 95–115 (2019)

Sullivan, A., & Bers, M. U.: Investigating the use of robotics to increase girls’ interest in engineering during early elementary school. International Journal of Technology and Design Education, 29, 1033-1051 (2019)

Suoheimo, Mari. "Strategies and Visual Tools to Resolve Wicked Problems." The International Journal of Design Management and Professional Practice 13.2 (2019): 25.

Swaminathan, S., & Schellenberg, E. G.: Arts education, academic achievement, and cognitive ability. In P. P. Tinio & J. K. Smith (Eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of the Psychology of Aesthetics and the Arts, 364–384. Cambridge University Press (2015)

Torres-Ramos, S., Fajardo-Robledo, N. S., Pérez- Carrillo, L. A., Castillo-Cruz, C., Retamoza-Vega, P. D. R., Rodríguez-Betancourtt, V. M., & Neri-Cortés, C.: Mentors as Female Role Models in STEM Disciplines and Their Benefits. Sustainability, 13(23), 12938 (2021)

Taherdoost, H.: What is the best response scale for survey and questionnaire design; review of different lengths of rating scale/attitude scale/Likert scale.(2019)

White, Daniel, and Seamus Delaney. "Full STEAM Ahead, but Who Has the Map for Integration?– A PRISMA Systematic Review on the Incorporation of Interdisciplinary Learning into Schools." LUMAT: International Journal on Math, Science and Technology Education 9.2 (2021): 9-32.

Yakman, G.: STEAM education: An overview of creating a model of integrative education. Pupils’ attitudes towards technology (PATT-19) conference: Research on technology, innovation, Design & Engineering Teaching, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA (2008)




How to Cite

Maric J, Murali Rani L. Tailoring Full STEAM Ahead Empowerment: Creative Coding for 21st Century Girls. EAI Endorsed Trans Creat Tech [Internet]. 2024 Mar. 18 [cited 2024 Apr. 20];10. Available from: https://publications.eai.eu/index.php/ct/article/view/5312