Karunanithi and team receives National Science Foundation Education Grant

Arun Karananithi 432
Arun Karunanithi Associate Professor, Civil Engineering

The Department of Civil Engineering and the Center for Sustainable Infrastructure System has received a NSF – IUSE grant (2 years; $ 249,967) titled “Sustainable Stem Learning Program (S2LP): Promoting systems thinking to aid holistic undergraduate education.” Arun Karunanithi (PI), will lead this project and work with Mike Tang (co-PI), Vivian Shyu (co-PI; Psychology), and Azadeh Bolhari toward development and teaching of two engineering undergraduate courses with an aim to understand if a new teaching approach based on concept mapping can aid in the development of systems thinking skills of undergraduate students.

Further, as part of this grant, systems thinking oriented teaching innovation is being incorporated in a graduate-level sustainability course. The PIs will develop new course material based on concept mapping for the three classes and assessment data collected from these courses will help us understand the effectiveness of the new teaching intervention towards development of students systems thinking skills. As part of this project, baseline data related to cognitive styles and systems thinking skills of undergraduate students of different majors is being collected through questionnaires and tests.

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