The Office of the Provost is pleased to announce the 2016 recipients of seed grants through the Tufts Innovates program. Eight newly-funded projects began in July, 2016, along with 38 previously-funded initiatives. We thank the faculty and administrative staff who acted as peer reviewers, as well as the many faculty and staff who submitted excellent proposals, not only making this year’s decisions particularly difficult, but also indicating the widespread commitment to enhancing teaching and learning at Tufts.
Assistive Technology Innovations
Principal Investigator: Gary Bedell, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Members: Jennifer Buxton, Amy Fleischer, Dan Hannon, Gary Leisk, Fay Shaw
Creating an interdisciplinary course and Maker Studio to facilitate collaborative, client-centered, team problem solving to design and test assistive devices for persons with disabilities.
Teaching Civic Science: Connecting Science-based Issues to Personal and Civic Responsibility
Principal Investigator: Jonathan Garlick, School of Dental Medicine
Team Members: Jennifer Allen, Julie Dobrow, Peter Levine, Marc Raila
Teaching courses and developing expertise across Tufts’ schools in the emerging field of Civic Science, to build capacities connecting science and civics that will empower civil engagement, democratic action and societal change and will advance science for the public good.
Integrating Student Learning in Hybrid Experimental-Computational Labs for Introductory Biology
Principal Investigator: Julia Gouvea, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Members: George Elmore, Colin Orians, Matthew Simon, Aditi Wagh
Designing a sequence of inquiry-based introductory biology laps for Bio14 that integrate computer simulations and experiments and investigate how they enhance student reasoning.
Societal Aspects of Design: Integration, Innovation, and Impact
Principal Investigator: Ron Lasser, School of Engineering
Creating a societal-focused integrated technology-based iterative design class for students utilizing experimentation and reflection.
Tufts Venture Lab Summer Accelerator
Principal Investigator: Inge Milde, Gordon Institute, School of Engineering
Team Members: Carol Dening, Tina Weber
Providing undergraduate and graduate students with an array of business support resources and services along a tailored curricula. To be launched in Tufts’ Collaborative Learning and Innovation Complex (CLIC) at 574 Boston Avenue.
Stats Beyond the Basics: Skills for Everyone
Principal Investigator: Elena Naumova, Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy
Team Members: Tania Alarcon, Karen Kosinski, Alexandra Kulinkina
Developing a university-wide, student-run statistics resource core, “Stats Beyond the Basics,” aiming to enhance data analysis skills with weekly hands-on workshops, monthly Mini-Roast sessions and week-long retreats.
Cybersecurity and Cyberwarfare
A Tufts Innovates: Global Seed Grant
Principal Investigator: Jeff Taliaferro, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Members: Ming Chow
Developing an interdisciplinary curriculum on current issues and emerging cybersecurity threats confronting U.S. government agencies, private sector firms, and individual citizens.
The Robyn Gittleman Teaching Fellows Program
Principal Investigator: Howard Woolf, Experimental College, Schools of Arts & Sciences & Engineering
Providing graduate students opportunities to teach original courses with sustained guidance, support, and reflection.
Using Problem Based Learning and Interactive Technology (WebEx) to Provide an Immersive Experiential Learning Environment in One Health
Principal Investigator: Janetrix Hellen Amuguni, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Team Members: Ralph Aarons, Susan Albright, Melissa Mazan, John Morgan, Joseph Sansone
Development of interdisciplinary, web-based and manually available One Health Problem Based Learning (PBL) cases for use across the veterinary, medical, and dental programs at Tufts. These cases will serve as an intellectual resource for students and provide valuable skills in teamwork and multidisciplinary approaches.
Imagination Economics: Innovations in Creative Learning
Principal Investigator: Mary Davis, School of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering
Team Members: Jill McDonough (three-time winner of the Pushcart prize), Brian Roach, Ayanna Thomas
A re-envisioning of traditional economics instruction, this project exposes students to traditional economic concepts through creative cases and assignments, exploring creative expression, such as poetry, as a way to promote an inclusive learning experience, enhance memory and retrieval, and improve economic literacy.
Teaching Democracy: A Curriculum for Popular and Community-Based Education
Principal Investigator: Penn Loh, School of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering
Team Members: Shirley Mark, Carolyn Rubin
Creation of a curriculum for Tufts students, faculty, and community partners to build their capacity in popular and community-based education methods, which are proven effective across culturally and economically diverse communities and deepen learning for students and faculty by linking theory and practice with lived experience.
The Science and Engineering of Music: Development of a New Course
Principal Investigator: Chris Rogers, School of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering
Team Members: Paul Lehrman, Roger Tobin
Creation of a unique course that is simultaneously a rigorous science class for science/engineering majors and a rigorous class for music students. Team-based peer learning will be used to teach the engineering of sound generation, the physics of sound, and the art of composing (both timbre and song) in a class built on teams of students with distributed expertise rather than teams of students with identical expertise.
HEALTH: Human-Environment-Animal: Learning and Technology Health
Principal Investigator: Jennifer Allen, School of Medicine/Public Health & Community Medicine
Co-Principal Investigators: Christine Rioux, Joann Lindenmayer
An interdisciplinary, cross-school initiative enhancing One Health education through the coordination of a One Health Working Group, the design of a new undergraduate course, and the development of field-based activities engaging real-world stakeholders.
From Physical Models to Big Data: Developing a Project-Based Computational Physics Course
Principal Investigator: Timothy Atherton, Physics & Astronomy, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Member: Chris Burke
Development and implementation of a student-centered, interdisciplinary, and project-based course in computational physics. This course will equip students with the skills to identify a range of computational approaches to solve a problem, design and implement functional computational solutions, and interpret output using statistical methods.
Human Security Core Course Development
Principal Investigator: Eileen Babbitt, Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy
Team Member: Alex DeWaal
Creation of a world-class, multi-disciplinary course, focused on one country, which explores the theories and practical applications of human security and enables students to identify and deeply engage in the core debates of the field.
Breaking the Language Barrier
Principal Investigator: Gregory Crane, Classics, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Member: Anna Krohn
Representing a dramatic shift in traditional pedagogy, this project facilitates the generalization and evaluation of curricular materials allowing students to interact directly with primary source materials in Classical Greek, Latin, Classical Arabic, and early Modern Italian.
Health Literacy Intensive: Dental education, literacy, and community partnership
Principal Investigator: Nicole Holland, School of Dental Medicine
Team Members: Wanda Wright, Kathy Dolan, Nancy Marks
A synthesis of health literacy education and active citizenship that facilitates the development of civic knowledge, skills, and values early in the TUSDM curriculum, while encouraging new health literacy interventions and engaging Boston’s Chinatown community.
Web-based Fieldwork Evaluation and Curriculum Outcome Measures
Principal Investigator: Michael Roberts, Occupational Therapy, School of Arts & Sciences
Utilization of a unique, web-based method of data collection and analysis to assess the performance of occupational therapy students in practice contexts, evaluate curriculum effectiveness, and ensure a best possible match between educational experiences and professional development goals.
Charting Negotiation, Mediation and Conflict Resolution in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Lessons from Theory and Practice.
Principal Investigator: Nadim Rouhana, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
Team Member: Michael Baskin
Creation of a course that leverages an established network of senior practitioners and policy makers to synthesize negotiation, mediation, and conflict resolution skills and develop student insight into cycles of conflict.
Active Learning in an Active Classroom (ALAC): Transforming “Nutr 272: Physical Activity and Health” Curriculum and Classroom Design to Promote Physical Activity and Enhance Learning.
Principal Investigator: Jennifer Sacheck, Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy
Team Member: Stacy Blondin
Incorporation of physical activity-related tools and technologies into existing Nutr 272 lesson plans and introduction of innovative changes in classroom infrastructure, including standing desks. The project will assess the impact of these modifications on students’ classroom experience and learning.
Dance on Camera: Engaging Students through the Integration of Dance and Technology
Principal Investigator: Jaclyn Waguespack, Drama & Dance, School of Arts & Sciences
Team Members: Marc Raila, Michael Callahan
Enhance an interdisciplinary course integrating dance, visual arts, and technology to expand digital and media literacy, exercise creative and artistic vision, and contribute to the Dance on Camera field on a regional and national level.
Integrating Clinical Skills Video Modules into Core Veterinary Laboratory Courses
Principal Investigator: Amanda Abelson, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
To develop a suite of clinical skills video modules, accompanied by online assessment exercises, for the small animal laboratory classes at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. The development of the video modules will combine best practices in multi-step teaching of clinical skills and effective online instruction. These modules and exercises will be integrated into the three small animal clinical skills laboratory courses required of all 1st, 2nd and 3rd year veterinary students.
Using Digital Humanities to Develop Citizen Scholars
Principal Investigator: Ioannis D. Evrigenis, School of Arts and Sciences
To engage undergraduate and graduate students in the interdisciplinary development of a multi-lingual, annotated digital edition of Bodin’s Six livres de la republique. This edition will enable users to electronically access the three existing versions alongside a contemporary, searchable translation of Bodin’s work, which is recognized widely as having an enduring influence over key current political concepts. In spring 2014, a Political Theory Methods seminar will incorporate the work that has been done on the new digital edition up to that point. This project will combine active citizenship with serious scholarship, train the next generation of citizen scholars, and offer our students the rare opportunity of making genuine contributions to knowledge in areas that are often considered beyond their reach.
Philosophy 91 – Ethics Bowl Boot Camp and Inaugural Tufts Ethics Bowl
Principal Investigator: Erin Kelly, School of Arts and Sciences
To emphasize and teach ethical reasoning in a cross-disciplinary, problem-based approach, engaging students in applying ethical theories and concepts to complex, detailed cases that are ethically challenging. The special topics course will use cases prepared for The Ethics Bowl, a national and regional ethics competition. The project will include the first Tufts Ethics Bowl competition, a day-long event open to all students, in October 2013. The winning team of the Tufts competition will proceed to the regional competition, and if successful there, to the national competition. The course and the Ethics Bowl will help to foster a campus culture that encourages ethical inquiry, critical thinking, and active citizenship.
Optimizing the use of New Media in the Connected Classroom: New Tools and Instructional Design for Deeper Learning at Tufts
Principal Investigator: Kris Manjapra, School of Arts and Sciences
To develop, document and disseminate a suite of instructional design and digital tools to facilitate a long-distance “connected classroom” experience between Tufts students and BRAC University students in Bangladesh in spring 2014. These tools will have immediate potential for broad application across disciplines and schools at Tufts. The connected classroom will pair classrooms at Tufts and BRAC-U using videoconferencing, webconferencing and multimedia courseware to create a synchronous co-taught History course. Students will engage in collaborative learning across global distance. The project will include the development of (1) the ability to port the prototyped Interactive Video Player to and from the Tufts Digital Library, (2) sharable instructional documentation for Multilinear Video Essays, (3) online tutorials and in-class instructional materials on informed and responsible research on the Open Web tailored for Tufts students, and (4) an assessment strategy using the new E-portfolio Trunk tool to record the attitudinal shifts among students who take part in the long-distance connected classroom.
Patients without Borders: using Distance Learning to Connect Cummings Students with Veterinary Practice in Morocco
Principal Investigator: Melissa R. Mazan, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
To develop expertise and understanding of the global context of veterinary medicine by using videoconference real-time ward rounds for working equids in a charity hospital in Morocco, paired with internet based interactive multi-linear learning modules to learn the principles, practice, and cultural context of veterinary practice in a developing country. The project will address distance learning comprehensively by (1) including primary training in working equid diseases and health problems rarely seen in Grafton, (2) improving videoconferencing and application sharing capabilities, and (3) expanding our students’ understanding of the relevant cultural and economic background. Seventy-five percent of the 4th year students are expected to be involved in the new studies; by the second year, all 4th year students will have exposure. This project will create a prototype for enabling students to have authentic training in global health, without mandating international travel.
Jumbo ML: Smoothing the Path to Mastery of Modules for Beginning Computer Science Students
Principal Investigator: Norman Ramsey, School of Engineering
To promote student learning of essential programming principles through the development of a new computer language. The aim of developing Jumbo ML will be to remove obstacles from students, so they can solve bigger, more challenging problems. Jumbo ML will first be used in spring 2014 in Computer Science 15, a beginning computer science course taken by hundreds of students. The project will include developing a Guide for students using Jumbo ML, specifically organized around the principles to be taught in the course.
An Integrated Approach to Teaching Advanced Epidemiology and Biostatistics to Clinical Researchers
Principal Investigator: Jessica Paulus, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts CTSI
This project will create a series of case examples and teaching materials for an integrated approach to teaching Epidemiology and Biostatistics.
Canine Dissection Instructional Audio-Visual Modules
Principal Investigator: M.S.A. Kumar, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Each audio-visual module will show procedures to dissect, identify and understand spatial relationships of structures of a particular region during each anatomy laboratory session.
Creation of Interactive Content to Support More Discussion-Based Instruction in Engineering
Principal Investigator: Ethan Danahy, School of Engineering
Digital textbook development of interactive course materials for use outside the classroom, thus freeing up in-class lecture time for discussions and hands-on group work.
Developing a New Digital Tool for Hands-On Learning and Collaborative Source-Document Editing
Principal Investigator: Marie-Claire Beaulieu, School of Arts and Sciences
Gregory Crane, School of Arts and Sciences; Bridget Almas, Perseus Project; Christopher Barbour, Alexander May, Alicia Morris, Anne Sauer, Tisch Library; Brigid Freymuller, Grad. Asst, School of Arts and Sciences
Development of an online tool for students to collaboratively transcribe, edit, and translate Latin and Greek source documents from Tisch Library, creating open-source digital editions.
Engaging Students and Faculty in GPU (Graphics Processing Units) Programming for Scientific Applications at Tufts
Principal Investigator: Soha Hassoun, School of Engineering
This project engages graduate and undergraduate students and faculty at Tufts in educational and research activities using Graphic Processing Units (GPUs) for high-performance scientific applications.
High-Definition Cinemicrography for Teaching Histology and Pathology
Principal Investigator: Joyce Knoll, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
A state-of-the art HD imaging system will be used to create web-based instructor-guided videomicroscope tutorials of normal and diseased tissues directly pertinent to veterinary medicine.
Multidisciplinary Short Courses in Genomic Analysis
Principal Investigator: Peter Castaldi, School of Medicine, Tufts CTSI
Lax Iyer, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences; Jessica Paulus, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts CTSI; Joshua Ainsley, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences; Gavin Schnitzler, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences; Tanya Logvinenko, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts CTSI; Gordon Huggins, School of Medicine, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences; Donna Slonim, School of Arts and Sciences
Development and offering of five short courses to provide researchers with skills necessary to analyze specific types of genomic/proteomic data.
Telling the Climate Justice Story
Principal Investigator: Jonathan E. Kenny, School of Arts and Sciences
Interdisciplinary undergraduate course integrating presentations by guest experts with instruction on becoming effective advocates for climate justice through development of video or other innovative projects.
Country Management: Strategy, Operations and Leadership in Emerging and Frontier Economies
Principal Investigator: Bhaskar Chakravorti, Fletcher School
Pioneering research and education area in international relations.
Development of video-based teaching tools for clinical ultrasound in veterinary medicine
Principal Investigator: Dominique Penninck, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Olivier Taeymans, James Sutherland-Smith and Ryan King, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Unique resource in French and English for local and international training at all levels.
Humanizing the Sciences through Interdisciplinary, Interpersonal, and Ensemble Learning: An Introductory Course for Freshmen and Sophomore Students
Principal Investigator: Jonathan Garlick, School of Dental Medicine
Engaging student learning of the sciences through a humanistic, interdisciplinary lens via collaborative, “ensemble” learning and team teaching.
Junior Design – A Systems Approach
Principal Investigator: Ron Lasser, School of Engineering
Creating the environment of a Design Studio for systems engineering.
New Course in Environmental Communication
Principal Investigator: Julie Dobrow, School of Arts and Sciences
Improving environmental literacy and communication through the lens of natural and social sciences, multimedia, and primary source material.
Nutrition 101: Using Blended Learning and Educational Technology to Improve Student Learning in a Large-Enrollment Course
Principal Investigator: Patrick Connell, Friedman School
Diane McKay, HNRCA; Kelly Kane, Friedman School
Improving student learning in large introductory classes through hybrid learning environments.
Pilot Project in Spanish Language Instruction
Principal Investigator: Sandra Baer, School of Arts and Sciences
Jean Herbert and Laura Rogers, School of Arts and Sciences
Transforming language instruction through Universal Design.
Single Statistical Software Initiative (SiSSI)
Principal Investigator: Kenneth Chui, School of Medicine
Steven A. Cohen and David Tybor, School of Medicine
Creating a flexible and user-friendly wiki forum to enhance the learning of statistical software.
Teaching Psychology in a Virtual International Learning Environment
Principal Investigator: Holly Taylor, School of Arts and Sciences
Building a model for virtual international, collaborative classrooms.
The Use of Direct Observation, Feedback, and Video-based Self-reflection to Enhance the Teaching Skills of Residents: A Multidisciplinary Randomized Control Trial at Two Institutions
Principal Investigator: Laura Snydman, School of Medicine
Joseph Rencic, Daniel Chandler, Kimberly Dowdell, Lori Lyn Price, Jessica Paulus, Priya Garg, Julia Aquino and Kevin Hinchey, School of Medicine
Assessment of innovative feedback methods in teaching residents to teach.
Tufts Undergraduate Global Health Resource Network
Principal Investigator: Edith Balbach, School of Arts and Sciences
Mary Bruynell and Dahlia Norrey, Students from the School of Arts and Sciences
Creating a sustainable Tufts undergraduate resource for global health information, networking and awareness.