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Funded Projects

Fall 2016

Implementation and research grants

The Baltimore Metropolitan Area Study on Race, Inequality and the City: A Graduate Student Survey Research and Training Program – Cedric Herring, professor and director of the Language, Literacy, and Culture Ph.D. program, and Loren Henderson, assistant professor, sociology and anthropology, will create a new multidisciplinary graduate program that trains students in survey research methods while generating social science data on issues of race and inequality in Baltimore region to be shared with community leaders and policymakers to inform future decision-making.

Incorporating CNC Machining in a Machine Design Course – Neil Rothman, professor of the practice, mechanical engineering, and Andrew Gadsden, assistant professor, mechanical engineering, will strengthen the foundation of the undergraduate mechanical engineering program by offering opportunities for students to explore conventional fabrication processes–skills and knowledge that are in high-demand when entering the workforce. The team will integrate computer numerical control (CNC) machine tools into the program’s machine design course to give students experience designing, building, and testing machines and fabricating components.

Seed Grants

‘Nobody’s Ever Asked That Question’: Implementation of Student-led Survey Projects to Enhance Analytical Skills in the Social Sciences – Ian Anson, assistant professor, political science, will develop a new course which allows students to collaborate on the design, implementation, and analysis of a large-scale national online survey. The goal of the course will be to help students develop analytical research skills and engage them in understanding research methods by shifting learning experiences from instructor-driven to student-led.

Improving Student Support to Reduce Academic Integrity Violations for Computer Science I and II – Engineering lecturers Katherine Gibson and Jeremy Dixon will look at ways in which the campus can reduce academic integrity violations in computer science programs. The team will implement an improved system for educating students on class policies that uses aural and visual resources and a mandatory quiz to test comprehension. The new approach will also include developing and promoting supplemental academic opportunities for students struggling with course material.

Fall 2015

Implementation and research grants

Virtual Reality Design for Science: Integrating Research, Communication, and Learning for Interdisciplinary Training – A team led by Jian Chen, Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, will harness the growing interest and popularity of virtual reality through the creation of a new course designed to challenge graduate and senior undergraduate students to collaboratively write, review, and critique research proposals. The project-oriented class will introduce students to the use of hybrid reality displays, 3D modeling, visualization, and fabrication to conduct and analyze scientific research. The new course embraces the university’s goal of advancing interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research activity.

Designing and Developing Effective Mobile Applications – A team led by Viviana Cordova, Assistant Professor of Visual Arts, and Nilanjan Banerjee, Associate Professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, will create a new interdisciplinary project that teaches both designers and developers the life cycle and project management of mobile application development. Working with professional clients, visual arts and computer science students will use teamwork to tackle real-world projects with deadlines, milestones, and budget constraints. Throughout the semester, students from the Advanced Interface Design and Mobile Programming classes will collaborate to apply their design and programming experience to develop smartphone applications for clients.

Spring 2015

Adaptation awards

Explore Baltimore Heritage: A Partnership Between Baltimore Heritage and UMBC – A team led by Denise Meringolo, Associate Professor of History, will expand UMBC’s partnership with Baltimore Heritage through supporting the organization’s goals of developing educational material, while also deepening UMBC students’ learning experience and professional development. Specifically, this collaboration will grant students in the History program the opportunity to build meaningful historical content for Explore Baltimore Heritage, a mobile app that lets people build self-guided tours of the many unique historic places of Baltimore and its neighborhoods.

Implementation and research grants

Learning and Innovation at the Interface of Mathematics and Medicine: A NEW Approach – A team led by Bradford Peercy, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Statistics, has proposed the Neuromathematical Experience Workgroup (NEW), a new approach to training students on the interface of mathematics and neurosciences that focuses on interdisciplinary, team-based experiences. The fundamental change in the nature of biological research toward quantitative sciences has identified a need for collaboration with biology and mathematics and statistics. Through the new project both undergraduate and graduate students will develop core skills and tools required in mathematics and neuroscience to form a common foundation that will prepare them for future careers in neuroscience and as research and teaching faculty.

NEXT at UMBC: Researching Connections Between Applied Learning, Affective Learning, and Student Success – A team led by Hannah Schmitz, Applied Learning Program Coordinator for the Shriver Center, is developing a program to investigate the interconnection between applied learning and student affective development. This analysis will set us on a path to generating metrics to help assess the contribution of applied learning experiences, such as internships, research, study abroad, and service-learning to our students’ academic, social, professional, and civic development.

Seed grants

Connections: A Transfer Student Experience Course – A team led by Diane Alonso, Director of Psychology at Shady Grove, will create a transfer student experience course that uses the principles of Interprofessional Education (IPE) to bring students from different disciplines together in a technology-rich active learning environment and challenge them to think beyond their physical and mental boundaries. This innovative course is based on our First Year Experience program and will be integral in helping transfer students at UMBC at Shady Grove learn and grow as students and professionals.

Fall 2014

Adaptation awards

Pilot Study of an Integrated Active Team-Based Learning Redesign of MATH 155 Applied Calculus – A team led by Matthias Gobbert, Professor of Mathematics and Statistics, will apply active and team-based learning in the redesign of MATH 155 to create an environment where students have the support they need as they practice applying the skills and techniques learned during lectures and readings. The class meeting pattern will be restructured to offer three distinct experiences for students: the lecture will deliver the information and techniques to the students through video lectures, exposure to prior readings, and pre-reading quizzes; the seminar will group students into teams of three to practice the techniques in a small group setting with active support from the teacher assistant and undergraduate assistants; and the discussion will prepare students for tackling problem solving on their own with individual assignments.

Baltimore Stories: Emerging Media Across the Curriculum – A team led by Nicole King, Associate Professor, American Studies, and Bill Shewbridge, Professor of the Practice, Media and Communication Studies, will help students develop interview and production skills with creative storytelling through a unique collaboration between UMBC and a Baltimore-based nonprofit, the Center for Emerging Media (CEM). The interdisciplinary courses will guide students in place-based cultural and historical examinations of Baltimore’s residents and neighborhoods to explore the productive linkages and gaps between different disciplines. Involvement in the courses will give students experience in applied learning and civic engagement, while developing professional portfolios for work.

Spring 2014

Implementation and research grants

Re-playing the Past: Building a Digital Game for the History Classroom – A team led by Anne Sarah Rubin, Associate Professor of History, brings together history and game development to immerse students in Civil War Baltimore. Linking history and computer science/visual arts courses through gamification, graduate historians and undergraduate game developers will collaborate to create a game prototype that both engages and educates students in the “world” of the past. By playing the game, students will better understand the limits of knowledge, resources, and abilities that confronted and confounded people who participated in historic events.

Seed grants

The Future of Feedback: An Audio-Only Response to Writing – A team led by Sally Shivnan, Senior Lecturer in English and Director of the Writing and Rhetoric Division, will address the challenges of providing quality feedback on students’ writing by exploring audio comments as a way to produce effective, timely comments on student drafts. Using iAnnotate, a popular Apple mobile and tablet application, the team of faculty investigators will measure the effectiveness of audio-only commenting on student drafts to determine its impact on student learning and retention, as well as the faculty experience.

Fall 2013

Implementation and research grants

Wearable Computing in Classroom Settings – A team led by Shaun Kane, assistant professor of human-centered computing, will explore the potential of using wearable technology, like Google Glass, to improve communication and instruction in the classroom. Students and instructors will test these prototypes in real classroom settings and identify the ways in which wearable computing technology can enhance—as well as disrupt—teaching and interaction in the classroom.

Quantitative Reasoning: Measurement and Skills Lab – A team led by Bill LaCourse, Dean of the College of Natural and Mathematical Sciences and professor of chemistry and biochemistry, will advance students’ understanding of, and skills in, mathematical concepts through the development of a foundational skills lab course that teaches students how to use the power of math to solve “real-world” problems. With an emphasis on interdisciplinarity, aspiring STEM majors will learn basic skills and high-order reasoning to solve problems across a span of disciplines.

Financial Self-Efficacy of School of Social Work Students – A team led by Carolyn Tice, associate dean of social work, will examine perceptions, financial knowledge and self-efficacy of the university’s social work majors to identify and address the growing need for experience and training when dealing with the financial struggles individuals, families and communities face. Using workshops and seminars on special topics surrounding financial self-efficacy, the project will help students better understand and manage financial issues, not only in preparation when working with clients but also in their own lives.

Seed grants

Leveraging Technology to Improve Small Group Advising in COEIT – A team led by academic advisor Emily Abrams-Stephens will develop a new small group advising system for students in the College of Engineering and Information Technology (COEIT) centered on increasing the efficiency and sense of community through adoption of new technologies and small group interaction. These advising sessions will allow small, major-specific groups to use tablets to help plan their registration for the upcoming semester, get advising authorization, access degree audits, find major information, locate important forms and connect with campus resources.

Individualized Degree Design Lab – A team led by Steve McAlpine, assistant director of interdisciplinary studies, will run a specialized lab where students will have the support necessary to develop an articulate and cohesive plan for their career aspirations, including identifying goals, establishing accurate timelines and connecting with experts in their desired professional fields. The lab will serve as a collaborative space where students can learn from peers, faculty and mentors how to balance competing demands, requirements and interests.

Spring 2013

Implementation and research grants

The Math Gym – A team led by Nagaraj Neerchal, professor and chair of mathematics and statistics, will develop The Math Gym, which will feature “conditioning coaches” and “personal trainers” who will help students keep their foundational math skills in good working order. Moreover, the gym will promote healthy math habits among all our students, drawing a clear analogy between the regular work outs and conditioning needed to maintain both athletic and mathematical skill.

Active Computing Teaching and InnoVation Environment A team led by Marie desJardins, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, will create ACTIVE, a dynamic “laptop laboratory.” The lab will support innovation in computing courses – with a particular focus on improving the retention and success of women, underrepresented minorities and transfer students. The laboratory will extend active-learning environments, such as CASTLE and the new English writing labs, to a new area of the university.

Seed grants

The Wisdom Institute – A team led by Craig Saper, professor and director of UMBC’s language, literacy and culture (LLC) program, will create an institute to expand the role for emeritus professors at UMBC.

Putting Students’ Language Skills to Work – A team led by Susanne Sutton, lecturer in modern languages, linguistics, and intercultural communication, will develop new experiential and service learning course requirements for undergraduates studying German, with a particular focus on connecting students to Baltimore’s German community.

Service Learning in Statics – A team led by Anne Spence, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, will develop new service-learning requirements for undergraduates studying mechanical engineering, with a particular focus on identifying components that increase retention and student success.

EHS – Bruce Walz, professor and chair of emergency health services, will lead a project to integrate individual cameras into EHS exercises, so that students can receive more personalized and immediate feedback on their performance.