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Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Rowan University
  • Cheng Zhu
  • (856) 256-4057
  • Sarah Ferguson
  • Lei Wang
  • Sarah K Bauer
  • Ying Tang
Award Date:08/02/2021
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 299,910
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 299,910
  • FY 2021=$299,910
Start Date:10/15/2021
End Date:09/30/2024
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.076
Primary Program Source:040106 NSF Education & Human Resource
Award Title or Description:Multiphysics Enriched Mixed Reality for Integrated Geotechnical Education
Federal Award ID Number:2121277
DUNS ID:139203145
Parent DUNS ID:139203145
Program Officer:
  • Abby Ilumoka
  • (703) 292-2703

Awardee Location

Street:Office of Sponsored Programs
Awardee Cong. District:01

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Rowan University
Cong. District:01

Abstract at Time of Award

This project aims to serve the national interest by design, implementation and assessment of the impact of a series of innovative mixed reality games on undergraduate students’ interest and success in geo-technical engineering. Despite the critical role of geo-technical engineering in many global issues today, comprehensive geo-technical education is missing from many civil engineering curricula. Additionally, students have few opportunities to apply geo-technical principles and very rarely choose to specialize in this important sub-field. The project will be implemented across different institutional settings. The use of the novel game-based learning environment (MERGE) as well as integration of smart city design concept is a powerful way to enhance student engagement. The mixed reality game infuses cyber-infrastructure learning experiences and meta-cognitive skills into an attractive and motivating learning environment. MERGE is expected to provide an integrated geo-technical learning experience with visualization, collaboration and simulation tools to promote metacognition for geo-technical design and problem solving. MERGE seeks to create an interactive learning platform for students to digitally explore multi-physical geo-technical phenomena. The project will advance the current understanding of the role of mixed reality in fostering student learning, the process of interactive visual exploration for engineering design, and the interplay of meta-cognitive interventions and problem-solving tactics. Research questions are clearly articulated to guide investigations in the game-based learning environment which include the examination of impact on student learning of geo-technical engineering concepts, student experimental skills, cyber-infrastructure knowledge and ethical decision-making. The use of a mixed method approach will permit the triangulation of quantitative and qualitative findings. The cyber-features of the game system will enable unlimited access outside the traditional classroom, encouraging life-long learning for students to adapt to a continuously changing world. The project will directly enhance geo-technical learning for students at Rowan University and the University of the District of Columbia (an HBCU) and prepare them for the future geo-technical engineering workforce. The project will organize workshops for both local and national geo-technical educators to disseminate project information and gather professional comments for future improvements. The NSF IUSE: EHR Program supports research and development projects to improve the effectiveness of STEM education for all students. Through the Engaged Student Learning track, the program supports the creation, exploration, and implementation of promising practices and tools. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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