CEHS Technology Grants - FY23

Optimizing learning through engagement and empathy in content intensive meetings and classes
Kristin Malek

Constant access to information is becoming more distracting and prevalent each day. Thus, it is becoming increasingly important to understand how to design classrooms and educational environments for maximum engagement for the effective transfer of learning in the presence of today’s landscape. The outputs of the proposed work analyzing interactive projection and the influence of lighting on empathy and cognitive functions will contribute to understanding these learning influencers. With the results of this proposal, faculty can incorporate these principles into classroom design and environment to optimize learning. Specific to my area, undergraduate and graduate students can take this classroom learning and apply it to plan effective meetings and conduct meeting analyses to improve the attendees’ transfer of learning. Students can apply these principles throughout this research and then after graduation, which will enable them to plan more effective meetings and create a more informed workforce during their own careers.

Innovative STEM Technologies for Elementary Teachers
Amanda Thomas

From a young age, children develop identities as STEM learners and interests in STEM careers (DeJarnette, 2012; Jarrett, 1999; Maltese & Tai, 2010). This makes it imperative that teachers of young children are well-prepared to provide engaging STEM learning experiences. This proposed project will enable elementary STEM educators in the Department of Teaching, Learning & Teacher Education Elementary Education program and the Department of Child, Youth and Families Inclusive Education program to engage UNL undergraduate pre-service teachers in technology-rich STEM learning and teaching. The specific technologies afforded by this grant will be: educational drones, micro:bits sensor kits, and technology-focused STEM models for renewable energy and fuel cell vehicles. These technologies will enable UNL students to experience and design integrated learning experiences that incorporate grade-level science and mathematics content with engineering design and innovative technology models and tools.

Building capacity for inclusive excellence through evidence-based practice using Mursion simulation technology.
John Raible

Student leaders in CEHS will use Mursion simulation software to practice interpersonal skills related to diversity and inclusion, including but not limited to addressing a microaggression by a peer. Completion of two consecutive practice and reflection sessions has been shown to increase participants’ confidence and skills more than the typical DEI approach of a one-and-done workshop on a particular topic. Our goal is to empower students who complete the simulation to become role models, influencers, and DEI advocates throughout the college. This grant will also position us to submit subsequent proposals to other funders to implement simulation technology more broadly throughout the college for DEI and other purposes.