TIP winner

Sherif El_Tawil (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
Traditional methods of teaching structural engineering are static, making it difficult for students to visualize and appreciate how complex spatial arrangements change when subjected to varying circumstances. When 3-D objects are depicted in 2-D spaces like screens, boards, or lecture notes, students have no opportunity to reconfigure the models at will. Even when working with 3-D physical structures in a controlled, laboratory environment, it can be difficult, costly, and dangerous to demonstrate limit states, especially those associated with compression members and connections.
 
By contrast, digitized models in a virtual reality (VR) environment lend themselves to an immersive, interactive experience. Students climb or fly around a model, discovering the size and extent of important features. Instead of seeing just a few 2-D sketches of flexural or torsional buckling, students can quickly “dance” with several different columns undergoing various buckling modes. By discussing with an instructor what they are observing, students identify key aspects that affect the design of column members.
 
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Davoren Chick (Internal Medicine and Medical Education)
Although national accreditation standards expect clinicians to be aware of socioeconomic barriers that impact patient care, no national curriculum existed. A local needs assessment revealed that exposing U-M residents to an informal curriculum through training in underserved clinical settings resulted in no significantly improved knowledge of content essential to the care of the homeless and uninsured.
 
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 J. Matthew Velkey (Cell and Developmental Biology)
Lloyd M. Stoolman (Pathology)
The goal…
  • create an interactive laboratory experience while removing impediments to learning such as malfunctioning microscopes, aging slide sets, and inconsistent tissue sections. 
The solutions…
  • produce high resolution digital replicas of optimal tissue sections. 
  • compile online image repositories. 
  • deploy intuitive, computer-based "viewers" that improve upon microscopes. 
The user experience…
  • web-based laboratory syllabi link directly to virtual slides and, in some cases, directly to annotated structures of interest buried deep in tissue sections. 
  • computer-based viewers provide effortless scan + zoom functions to the submicron level, permit side-by-side comparison of multiple tissue sections, link student generated annotations directly to regions of interest (or query), and provide 24/7 access to teaching materials. 
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Perry Samson (Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences)
LectureTools is designed as an alternative to ‘clickers’ and provides a wider range of question types for instructors. Additionally, LectureTools allows students to pose questions during lecture, and GSIs in the room can answer their questions for them in real time. Students can also type their notes synchronized to the instructor’s slides and even draw on the slides with a Mac or PC. The tool originated from Samson’s desire to expand the use of student discussion in large lecture classes and the realization that clickers could not accommodate the kinds of questions he wished to pose, including free response, lists to reorder, and image-based questions.
 
XamPREP redesigns textbook content (in collaboration with publishers) to promote inquiry and timely reading. Students log in to answer questions posed by the instructor in preparation for each class, and they rate their confidence in each answer. Whether right or wrong, each response takes the student directly to the content germane to the question. At the very least, students are exposed to key concepts before lecture, and are able to search the textbook, view animations and quiz themselves on concepts prior to exams.
 
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Philip Myers (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)
The ADW database contains thousands of detailed descriptions of species that have been contributed by students from over 40 institutions in North America. A specially designed template allows non-experts to enter data that will be amenable to structured searches. Each section has a place for free text, along with associated keywords and data fields for quantitative summaries. Authors also attach bibliographic citations. 
 
Since 2007 Quaardvark has provided a powerful new way for students to construct queries and download ADW data to explore natural history patterns and test hypotheses. Quaardvark opens up possibilities for active learning in many biological disciplines, including ecology, evolutionary biology, and conservation. 
 
An interdisciplinary partnership between the ADW team and Nancy Songer, a professor in the School of Education, brings authentic science experiences to 4th-6th grade students in Detroit Public Schools. 
 
To view the Animal Diversity Web project, please visit: http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/index.html
 

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