Digital Gardener Lite

A Digitally Creative Fall Experience

The Digital Gardener-Lite program is a Five-Saturday commuter program at IU Bloomington offering an immersive digital literacy, digital creativity, and digital learning experience for select high school students in South Central Indiana. It focuses on providing an introductory college experience while also helping participants develop digital skills and abilities.

This fall’s theme is Campus, Craft, and Collaboration. Participants will learn about the IU Bloomington Campus and its history through its buildings and architecture. Then, working in teams, students will recreate select structures in Minecraft EDU and use those productions and other creative digital authoring tools to tell the stories of those structures. Participants will also be challenged to create a digital learning narrative of their team journey and their own experience.  

DG-Lite attendees will have the opportunity to learn with faculty, librarians, and teaching and learning staff, while developing digital literacy and digital creativity skills through creative techniques and technologies: i.e., ranging from building scrolling webpages and multimedia experiences in Adobe Spark to creating videos (from machinima to talking head production) with Adobe Premiere Rush. Additional components may include working with augmented reality technologies, engaging in makerspace activities, and/or engaging national experts in digital making, play and games, critical/creative multimedia storytelling.

Applicants/Nominees & Guidelines

The program is limited to 15-18 students this first year. As such, we are asking applicants to answer a few key questions on our applicant form. We welcome a range of students in the program, especially underrepresented populations in higher education fields related to digital creativity, games, and technology.

Applicants must:

  • Be a high school student as of the Fall 2021 semester
  • Be from the South-Central Indiana region
  • Be able to reliably commute to and from the IU Bloomington campus all days of the program
  • Be willing and able to follow IU COVID safety guidelines while on the IU campus 

Applicants should:

  • Be motivated and responsible
  • Be able to work in a small group during periods with limited supervision
  • Have an interest in any of the following:
    • Digital games, tools, and/or technologies
    • Design, architecture, and/or creative production
    • Local/IU history and related research
    • Collaborative problem-solving and challenge-based activities

Applications can be submitted until August 20, 2021.

To apply or nominate a student, visit:

When, Where, and Other
  • Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021 – 9:30am-3:30pm
  • Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021 – 9:30am-3:30pm
  • Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021 – 9:30am-3:30pm
  • Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021 – 9:30am-3:30pm
  • Saturday, Oct. 11, 2021- 9:30am-3:30pm
  • IU Bloomington Campus, Student Building 015
  • Lunches and Technology provided
Notifications & Acceptances

Applicants selected for participation will be notified of acceptance by Aug. 27, 2021.

Program Lead & Support

This program is being led by Dr. Justin Hodgson, Associate Professor of Digital Rhetoric in the Department of English at Indiana University Bloomington, with support from Annamarie Carlson, rhetoric doctoral student, IUB English, and Mathew Decker, Manager of Student Technology Computing in the Learning Spaces division of University Information Technology Services (UITS).

This program is made possible by support from the Office of the Executive Vice President for University Academic Affairs (OEVPUAA) and the Technology and Learning division of UITS

For more information, contact Dr. Justin Hodgson at

For Program Overview
For Eligibility
For Location & Covid Guidelines
For Minecraft EDU information