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Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Montana State University
  • Stacey A Hancock
  • (406) 994-5350
  • David Millman
Award Date:01/09/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 30,474
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 30,474
  • FY 2020=$30,474
Start Date:01/15/2020
End Date:06/30/2020
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.049
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Topology for Data Science: An Introductory Workshop for Undergraduates
Federal Award ID Number:1955925
DUNS ID:625447982
Parent DUNS ID:079602596
Program Officer:
  • Joanna Kania-Bartoszynsk
  • (703) 292-4881

Awardee Location

Awardee Cong. District:00

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Montana State University
Street:309 Montana Hall
Cong. District:00

Abstract at Time of Award

Topology for Data Science (T4DS) is a day-long workshop designed to introduce undergraduate students to data science and topology, to be held on March 25, 2020, in Bozeman, MT. The workshop is scheduled to coincide with the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR)---a gathering of nearly 4,000 talented undergraduate students from across the world---hosted by Montana State University, March 26-28. This award will support the development and dissemination of workshop materials and will fund travel and participation of 28 undergraduates. An additional 22 students from local communities or those already planning to attend NCUR will also have the opportunity to participate. For a day, the participants will be immersed in the fast-growing area of data science, through the lens of topology. This workshop is the first of its kind: T4DS engages students in a hands-on, collaborative experience, requiring only discrete mathematics and a desire to try something new as prerequisites. T4DS will start with an overview of how to "think with data" through data exploration and visualization, continuing with a brief journey into the field of topology and how to use topological descriptors to summarize data. In the afternoon, students will investigate how to cluster data based on those topological descriptors, and will apply what they've learned to a new data set. The day will conclude with a reception, where a panel of five faculty members representing topology and data science will discuss their experiences with including undergraduates in research and potential career opportunities in data science. The content of T4DS will cross the disciplinary lines of computer science, statistics, and mathematics. It will blend topological data analysis, data mining, and broader data science content, delivered using an active-learning pedagogy. Most of the participants will not have any experience in topology, yet they will cluster data using topological descriptors, which will give them a glimpse into the topological data cycle. Moreover, this workshop will lay the foundation for developing materials on other aspects of data science, which will allow the organizers to broaden the offering of similar tutorials throughout Montana and surrounding states, including tribal colleges and geographically remote rural areas. After the workshop, tutorials will be distributed through Github and the Carpentries Lab---a repository of high-quality, community-reviewed, discoverable lessons--- reaching a large, diverse, international community. The conference website and workshop application can be found at 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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