In this paper, I studied college students’learning. They worked on “science cafe”
projects, and successfully executed those projects. Science cafe is a type of workshop.
I analyzed the following three research questions about their learning. First, did they
learn about the theme termed “offstage interests”? Second, what features characterize
“offstage interests”? Third, how did they learn about “offstage interests”?
To elucidate these research questions, I collected data through interviews of college
students, after science cafe activities for one year had been completed. The interviews
were combined with the interviewees’reflections on these activities.
By analyzing the data, I clarified the following three points. First, the college students
learned about the theme termed “offstage interests.”Their learning about “offstage in
terests”implies that they have become interested in others’offstage activities, such
as concerts. The offstage activities are out-of-sight from the onstage activities that
they appreciate or in which they participate. Second, their learning about “offstage
interests”comprises taking a keen interest in, and empathizing with, others’offstage
activities. Third, fostering learning about “offstage interests”requires two aspects: 1)
undertaking various roles in the science cafes’activities, and 2) creating a framework
of activities from scratch. Finally, I considered relationships among learning about
“offstage interests,”knotworking, and active learning.