Full Papers

Session Track-01

Track 1 – Full Papers I

Conference
12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT

Using Text Data Mining to Enhance the Literature Search Process for Novice Researchers

Andres Fortino (NYU & Autonomous Professional Development, USA); Qitong Zhong, Luke Yeh and Sijia Fang (NYU School of Profesional Studies, USA)

3
A literature search can be an arduous process, especially for novice researchers. We have developed a tool that allows a researcher to rank order a list of references that are returned by a keyword-based search engine, based on similarity to known exemplars. This significantly accelerates literature searches by novices. Our research question was: can we produce a text-analytic tool that, when used by an inexperienced scholar, rank-orders a list of references against an exemplar, so that the time needed to find relevant literature is reduced, and the literature survey section of their paper will be superior. An experiment was set up where one course section used the tool to produce the literature review section of a thesis proposal, and the other class used traditional literature research tools. We surveyed both sections to self-report the time used for the literature search. We found some time savings by some of the students using the tool. We also provided blind, randomly selected pairs of completed proposals to SME faculty who teach that same class to assess the quality of the literature sections of the samples. We found that the tool-using section of students reported significantly less time to do the literature search, and the quality of their literature review produced had a significantly higher quality.

Selection and Assignment of STEM Adjunct Faculty Using Text Data Mining

Andres Fortino (NYU & Autonomous Professional Development, USA); Qitong Zhong, Luke Yeh and Sijia Fang (NYU School of Profesional Studies, USA)

2
This paper presents the development and testing of a text data mining tool to assist in the selection and assignment of adjunct faculty to teach STEM courses. The tool scores the resume of a faculty member against course descriptions in a STEM graduate program. The tool returned a similarity score between a resume and course descriptions, which was then used as an indicator of faculty suitability to teach courses in the program. We enhanced the original tool with an improved user interface and deployed it to search for new faculty searches and in the process of assigning courses. A TD-IDF text analytic technique was used for similarity scoring. Our research question was to investigate whether a similarity-scoring tool for faculty resumes against course descriptions would be useful in the search and assignment process to hire faculty to teach specific courses. As part of our methods, we developed a friendly user interface to the existing tool using a student-centered coding contest. We applied the tool to the hiring and assignment of adjunct faculty. We measured success as the processing of a large number of open positions in a relatively short period of time and found a significantly high number of good fits between faculty and their course assignments. We investigated whether the scoring system positively correlated with the courses assigned to them. We successfully filled over 50 unassigned courses with appropriate faculty over a period of three months, where 30% were new hires. In the process, we discovered that the vast majority of the incumbent's similarity scores positively correlated to the courses assigned to them. This generated sufficient confidence that the description scoring system has been integrated as part of our faculty hiring and assignment processes in our programs.

A three-year retrospective on offering an embedded systems course with a focus on cybersecurity

Ravi Rao (Fairleigh Dickinson University)

6
The fast pace of advancement in fields of computer science and engineering creates enormous opportunities for the use and application of computing devices. The internet of things (IoT) constitutes an area experiencing significant growth. If IoT systems are not configured and used correctly, there is potential for widespread disruption and harm due to cyberattacks. Hence, the new generation of professionals in the field of computer technology needs to be conversant with cybersecurity and the design of protection of computer systems.

Cybersecurity is not restricted to a specific domain such as hardware or software and needs to address all aspects of operation of computer systems. Consequently, we have found it beneficial to introduce students to cybersecurity through an embedded systems course. Based on three years of teaching cybersecurity to students in an embedded systems course, we observe that students are excited and motivated to participate in hands-on lab exercises. We have taken special care to orient these lab exercises to breaking news articles about developments related to safety and cybersecurity. We also found it helpful to unify multiple lab exercises around a specific target application domain such as healthcare or retail.

Our results over a three-year period demonstrate that it is possible to teach essential cybersecurity concepts within a one-semester course to students who do not have prior exposure to this area. This knowledge needs to be expanded upon in other courses, thereby weaving a thread of cybersecurity through the students' educational experience.

MARREG-MARriage REGistration - for a better cause

Amit Mazumder (Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India, India)

41
MARREG is an eGovernance application software that is accessible through the portal https://rgmwb.gov.in by citizens. This citizen centric portal deals with the facets of easing the government business transaction process (GBTP) of handing out marriage certificates that records the solemnisation of marriage between a male and female citizen within the State of West Bengal, in the Republic of India, respecting the laws of the land (governing ACTs and Rules of marriage). This effort towards efficient eService delivery is evolving as an efficient system that entices the use of technology for leveraging effective managerial framework in the field of dissemination of public service through electronic means. The application software and, the entire initiative to register marriages through the online process, seek to empower men and women alike who enter into marital relationship to enjoy benefits linked to social perspectives. The project delivers a certificate of marriage, that's a legal document that, establishes the marital status of a wedded couple. On the social front, such a marriage certificate help the incumbents in getting a fair trial in the event of polygamy, polyandry, grant of citizenship, remarriage, other legal and social angles, as the case may be. Hence, the Hon'ble Supreme Court of India made it mandatory for a couple to register irrespective of the religion they belong to. A certificate of marriage adds value to the social marriage. Thus is this initiative for a better cause.

Integrating a Smartphone-Based Vibration Experiment into an Engineering Course

Musa Jouaneh (University of Rhode Island, USA)

3
A smartphone coupled with a low-cost physical system can be used to conduct a meaningful at-home engineering experiment that provides an environment for experiential and personalized learning. The objective of this study is to improve students' understanding of the response of a dynamic system through integrating an at-home experiment into a lecture-only class using a smartphone as the measurement system. The paper reports on the use of the linear acceleration sensor in smartphones to conduct an at-home experiment to measure the vibration characteristics of a cantilever beam in a junior-level, systems dynamic course. All students in the class were provided with a spring steel beam and a C-shaped clamp. The students mounted their own phone at the end of the beam, and an app was used to record the acceleration of the beam for three different beam lengths. From the experimental data, the students were asked to determine the damped natural frequency of the beam and compare it to theory. The study was performed over three years with a total of 302 students. Data analysis of the short pre and post quiz conducted with the experiment showed that the at-home experiment had a positive effect on students' understanding of key concepts. Furthermore, written and verbal comments from the students showed that the students valued the learning they got from performing this experiment.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

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Session Track-03

Track 3 – Full Papers II

Conference
12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT

Math & Crafts, Educational Activities: Ancient Math Methods, Future Directions

Ernesto Vega Janica (IEEE Standards Association, USA)

6
This paper summarizes multiple numerical systems, math concepts and historical references, and deeply focus on a hands-on exercise where children, parents and educators participate. The main goal of the hands-on experience is to engage our communities around Math, Science and Culture. Kids and adults can have a direct experience with tools, numbers, cultural historical references, and more. This combination of theory and practice should help our kids appreciate technical concepts by their own means and methods, as well as providing a wide-range of learning possibilities for the audience. The intent is to implement some of these "Math & Crafts" activities in local libraries and elementary schools.

The research and analysis for this paper is limited to a number of numerical and abacus systems that could offer practical educational models, as well as, hands-on activities for children, educators and parents. The intent is to craft a few practical presentations to promote the use of mathematical analysis, as well as cognitive processes, while teaching basic mathematical concepts to kids. The research also plans to launch these initiatives at the local libraries and expose some of these concepts to a broader audience.

A Hands-on Project to Improve Student Learning Experience in Electronics: Building Ship Storage Room Security System

Wei Yu (Massachusetts Maritime Academy, USA)

2
Project Based Learning (PBL) approach is known to motivate students to investigate and integrate knowledge of several domains to solve real-life problems. It drives students' intrinsic curiosity to connect isolated concepts to optimize their learning outcomes. Taking the advantages of PBL, a ship storage room security system project was designed and implemented in a junior-level Electronics Lab course at our university. The purpose of the project was to help students to improve their understanding of electronic element characteristics and their abilities to interpret electronic diagrams, configure and operate of electronic equipment. During the project, students needed to (1) design an electronic diagram that is able to detect ship storage room door open/closed status, trigger an alarm system, and reset the alarm system, and then (2) build an integrated circuit on a breadboard by using various electronic elements following the electronic diagram. Students had to dig into different course contents instructed in class and at the same time learn other new knowledge from external resources, such as internet, industrial documents, etc, to combine them effectively to produce a practical solution. It has been observed that the project has successfully led the students to explore the underlying connections of a variety of electronic concepts from class and new knowledge from external resources reaching their increased understanding of electronics and overall course satisfaction. The student survey results indicate the project has demonstrated strong positive impacts on the improvement of their knowledge and skills in electronic elements, diagrams and equipment.

Course-Specific Model for Prediction of At-Risk Students Based on Case-Based Reasoning

Haris Supic and Dzenana Donko (University of Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina)

2
Identifying at-risk students is a crucial step in different learning settings. Predictive modeling technique can be used to create an early warning system which predicts students' success in courses and informs both the teacher and the student of their performance. In this paper we describe a course-specific model for prediction of at-risk students. The proposed model uses the case-based reasoning (CBR) methodology to predict at-risk students at three specific points in time during the first half of the semester. In general, CBR is an approach of solving new problems based on solutions of similar previously experienced problem situation encoded in the form of cases. The proposed model classifies students as at-risk based on the most similar past cases retrieved from the casebase by using the k-NN algorithm. According to the experimental evaluation of the model accuracy, CBR model that is being developed for a specific course showed potential for an early prediction of at-risk students. Although the presented CBR model has been applied for one specific course, the key elements of predictive model can be easily reused by other courses.

A Comparative Analysis of Secondary School STEM Research Programs in a Chinese School and an American School

Xiang Gong and Erik Mohlhenrich (Princeton International School of Mathematics and Science, USA)

2
Countries around the world are committed to cultivating outstanding talent through STEM education. It is widely acknowledged that authentic STEM research programs are one of the most effective ways to achieve the goals of STEM education. In this paper, we present survey results in the 2018-2019 school year from school-based research programs at Princeton International School of Mathematics and Science (PRISMS) in the US and the High School Affiliated to Renmin University (commonly abbreviated as RDFZ) in China. A factorial MANOVA and a General Linear Model Univariate Analysis were used to test for similarities and differences between students' gains in dimensions of gains in thinking and working like a scientist (WIS), personal gains related to research work (PG), gains in skills (SKILL), attitudes or behaviors as a researcher (ATT), and career and graduate education aspirations (INF). Across both programs, we find significant gains on all variables as students' progress through their research experience. Scores from PRISMS students on WIS, PG, and ATT are significantly higher than those from RDFZ students. SKILL and INF showed significant correlations and thus were analyzed together; PRISMS students also scored higher on these variables. PRISMS 12th graders scored the highest of all school/grade level combinations. The results of this comparison speak to the efficacy of both programs in achieving the pedagogical goals of STEM research experiences. In addition, variables that could influence the differences are discussed, with particular attention given to the differences in the student population and school in general, number of students per project, and length of the research experience.

Device to Remotely Track and Locate the Position of a Child for Safety

Shamendra Egodawela, Ruwan Ranaweera, Janaka Wijayakulasooriya and Dushan Herath (University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka)

1
Parents are always worried about the wellbeing of their children. As per the Statistics Report 2017 by Missing Children Europe Organization, a child is reported missing every 2 minutes. Due to the imminent threat, parents are prone to buy their children mobile phones to keep in touch with them. However, giving a Mobile phone to a child can cause issues including cyber bullying, improper use of social networks, access to mature age and illicit content on the internet and possibly, phone theft. As an effort to tackle some of those issues, this paper proposes a solution which enables parents to call, locate and track their children using a child-friendly mobile device. The common scenario the device would come to play is in enhancing the safety of a child who would travel alone on a typical route; for instance a child who walks from home to school and back. The device can be calibrated to keep track of a typical route of travel. Then, if the device detects some deviation from the usual route, it would trigger a notification to parents. A probability matrix based novel algorithm is introduced to detect route deviation. Design details of the mobile device, along with the details of the route deviation detection algorithm are presented in this paper.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

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Session Track-04

Track 4 – Full Papers III

Conference
12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 12:30 PM — 2:00 PM EDT

Supporting Engineering Practices in Informal Learning Environments with a Tablet-Based Engineering Design Environment

Nicole M Zapparrata (Center for Advanced Studies in Education, USA)

2
This paper presents results from WISE Guys and Gals - Boys & Girls as WISEngineering STEM Learners (WGG). WGG is a five-year Advancing Informal Science Learning project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). WGG introduces informal, blended STEM engineering design challenge activities to middle school aged youth who attend Boys & Girls Clubs (B&GCs.) As B&GC youth work their design challenges, they practice engineering design thinking and learn about engineering careers. These youth, who are typically underrepresented in STEM areas, also enhance their STEM knowledge through WGG activity participation. The project developed and is studying brief (75-minute) and long (up to three-hour) blended (virtual and hands-on) engineering design challenges and enhancing WISEngineering, the online platform used to deliver the activities. This paper will present our findings that there is strong evidence that the program is engaging for middle school age youth and that they are learning from the experience.

The Preternship - An Academic-Industry Partnership Model for Early Experiential Learning Experiences in Computer Science Curricula

Matthew Morrison, John Dimpel and Emory Smith (University of Notre Dame, USA)

4
Herein, we present the "Preternship", an experiential learning method for introducing industry projects in the classroom early in the CS curricula. We conduct surveys of 132 industry members and 39 faculty members, and compare the results to assess opportunity for experiential learning. Then, we present the format and post-program survey results of a Preternship for a 48-student introductory computing course and a 16-student junior/senior level VLSI course, working in tandem with 27 industry Mentors, to demonstrate the potential for implementing this program early in CS curricula. The survey results show significant potential for the Preternship as a model for enhancing student skills in project planning and execution, motivating students to remain in their program, and showcase their technical and leadership potential to employers.

Design and Development of a SCADA Course for Engineering Undergraduates

Mohammad U. Mahfuz (University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, USA)

1
In this paper, a design and development of a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) course for senior level electrical engineering technology (EET) undergraduates have been presented. In this design, a detailed description of the course contents, laboratory experiments, project works, industry visits, and a typical assessment scheme has been presented. As of now, this course has been taught successfully to EET students for 4 years every fall semester since 2016 at the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Green Bay, USA. So far, the course has been very successful in providing the students with an in-depth understanding of a SCADA system and necessary foundational concepts as well as an exposure to practical SCADA systems through several collaborated industry tours. Experiences learnt from teaching this course have also been presented in this paper. A detailed design of the course has been presented in this paper such that the course could also be taught successfully to undergraduates at another academic institution in a similar engineering and/or engineering technology programs.

A social engineering awareness and training workshop for STEM students and practitioners

Aunshul Rege, Trinh Nguyen and Rachel Bleiman (Temple University, USA)

2
The human element is often regarded as the weakest link in cybersecurity, yet awareness and training efforts focus primarily on the technical aspects of cybersecurity and downplay the relevance of the human factor. One way to exploit this human vulnerability is through social engineering, in which cybercriminals utilize persuasion and manipulation of human behavior and psychology to convince individuals to reveal information, provide access or perform an action. This paper offers a case study on efforts to design and develop a social engineering awareness and training program that was implemented at the 2019 National Science Foundation Cybersecurity Summit using the National Institute of Standards and Technology framework for program development. This program was developed to enhance the ability for individuals in the future and current workforce to protect their organization against vulnerabilities to social engineering attacks, through corresponding awareness and training. The authors share the different stages that are involved in producing a successful program: designing the program, developing the awareness and training material, and implementing the program. In addition, this paper details the challenges and lessons the authors experienced and learned, which can be used as a guide for other practitioners to develop social engineering awareness and training programs.

Mathematics Gamification in Mobile App Software for Personalized Learning at Scale

Chee Wei Tan and Pei Duo YU (City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); Lin Ling (Princeton University & City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); Ching Nam Hang and Man Fai Wong (City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)

3
The essence of science and engineering lies in the abstract thinking and logical reasoning skills. Advance mathematical topics such as probability and modular arithmetic can be introduced to students at middle or pre-college schools to cultivate their capacity for logical thinking and problem-solving skills as well as gaining mathematical competency required in fields of science and engineering. In this paper, we introduce the idea of mathematics gamification and its application to a mobile app educational software development. We define mathematics gamification as the process of embedding mathematical concepts and their logical manipulations in a puzzle game-like setting aided by computing technologies. This is a form of personalized learning technologies that facilitate learning with peers in a social environment. In particular, we first present PolyMath, a meticulously designed mobile app software used in different learning occasions. The key idea in mathematics gamification is to motivate the users to level up from easy to more challenging game play. Then we describe several mathematics gamification instances in PolyMath, and report its use in an annual Julia Robinson Mathematics Festivals in Hong Kong. The efficacy of mobile app software in a math circle environment opens up new pedagogical ways to teach and learn advanced mathematics.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

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Session Track-05

Track 5 – Full Papers IV

Conference
3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT

Experiences Toward An Interactive Cloud-Based Learning System for STEM Education

Bharath Kumar Samanthula, Mirza Mehran, Michelle M. Zhu, Nicole Panorkou and Pankaj Lal (Montclair State University, USA)

2
The digital technology plays a vital role for improving student learning and engagement. This is especially true in STEM education where teaching scientific concepts for K-12 education requires engaging platform to encourage inquiry-based learning, and it has been shown that the use of computer simulations can increase student achievement and their interest in STEM. In this paper, we present an interactive cloud-based web system that enables teachers in middle schools to effectively teach earth and environmental science using interactive simulations. To achieve on-demand accessibility and high reliability, our system is hosted on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud platform that allows users, with an Internet connection and a Web browser, to access the course and do assignments. Additionally, we demonstrate teacher-role's functionality regarding managing course content, identifying low-performing students and achieving improved student learning outcomes. With the seamless integration of interactive simulations, user-friendly interfaces and transparent functionalities, our system aims to make learning more fun and engaging. Teachers who have used our system found it to be very helpful in engaging their students.

Behavioral Simulation Educational Framework for 2-Terminal MTJ-based Analog to Digital Converter

Gustavo Camero, Soheil Salehi and Ronald DeMara (University of Central Florida, USA)

1
The emergence of advanced non-uniform Compressive Sensing (CS) signal processing techniques and spin-based devices has led to the development of novel Analog to Digital Converter (ADC) architectures. Herein, a novel interactive simulation framework is developed to provide widespread access to the ADC architecture designed using commercially-available 2-terminal Magnetic Tunneling Junction (MTJ) devices. The proposed ADC simulation framework utilizes CS techniques to provide insights for educational and technical purposes. The proposed framework provides simulation results spanning from the energy consumption required by each sample and MTJ device to the switching behavior of each MTJ device. Additionally, the results demonstrate the type of signal used along with the bias voltage required to switch each MTJ device. However, currently, 2-terminal MTJ devices and advanced signal processing techniques are not part of the Electrical and Computer Engineering undergraduate curriculum. To mitigate this challenge, the proposed framework has an educational resource site companion to distribute the interactive tool and further provide insights into the modeled Spin-based ADC by showcasing the research it was based on. Finally, the educational resources site also includes video tutorials to further engage the students and teach undergraduates the fundamental behavior of MTJ devices and utilization of the interactive simulation framework.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration Approaches on Undergraduate Virtual Reality Technology Projects

Eric Nersesian, Margarita Vinnikov, Jessica Ross-Nersesian and Michael J Lee (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA)

2
Educational approaches must keep pace with the rapidly advancing state of technology so that students have the necessary skill sets for the modern workforce. Computer science education presents an interesting cross-section of challenges to STEM education to explore the effects of alternative teaching methods. Our undergraduate program has been working on these educational challenges for several years. We have found project-oriented studio classes integrating computing and design students with collaboration on emerging technology projects are leading to positive outcomes. The collaboration discussed in this paper involved an instructor from a VR computing course in our university's College of Computing and an instructor from a VR interaction design course in our university's College of Architecture and Design. The collaboration was set up in such a way that students from both classes could work with each other, while both instructors were able to meet their objectives. We present this cross-class collaboration method along with student surveys and final presentation results. It is a necessary class structure to successfully educate future developers and designers, and we wish to share our experiences with the larger STEM educational community.

Suspended Load Swing Stabilization

Thomas R Aldhizer, Austin Morock and Kristina Hughes (The United States Military Academy, USA); Mary Lanzerotti (USMA, USA); Suzanne Christoff, Susan Lintelmann and Jacob Capps (The United States Military Academy, USA)

2
This research proposes an interdisciplinary collaboration to improve hoist stabilization for medical evacuation and successful rescues. This paper would include the collaborative efforts from a diverse range of fields to include Systems Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, and the Special Collections & Archives Division of the United States Military Academy Library. The research objective of this effort is to create an algorithm which could limit the displacement angle of a suspended individual below a helicopter. This would be accomplished by changing the relative length of the cable at different points within the swing of the slung mass. This could all be done while reeling in the hoisted individual to the helicopter by changing the rate at which the hoist is lessening its cable. Elements of the mathematical principles that this research is built on are illustrated through Edgar Allen Poe's application of the pendulum in his short story "The Pit and the Pendulum". Poe was an individual who attended, but did not graduate from, USMA; however, his education at the Military Academy and his subsequent writings are the birthplace of this research endeavor. It is a multi-semester goal, and this paper will present an initial proof of concept.

Pre-college Computer Science Initiative for Augmented and Virtual Reality Development

Eric Nersesian and Adam Spryszynski (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA); Tracy Espiritu (Passaic County Technical Institute, USA); Michael J Lee (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA)

1
New curriculum initiatives are growing to meet near-future, industrial demand for computer science graduates with Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR/VR) development knowledge. Universities are often at the forefront in developing these curricula to help prepare their students for industry jobs. High schools wanting to offer college-level courses for their students typically work with local universities to adapt courses for their students' needs. This paper presents such an effort along with results from a student survey showing the successful implementation of college-level courses through training of high school teachers. Decisions of the program structure from both the collegiate and high school perspectives are discussed along with an explanation of events to help other educational institutions interested in expanding their own programs. The curricula from this study are available for public use via website and adapt as needed to meet the emerging employment needs of their students pursuing academics and jobs in AR/VR.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

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Session Track-07

Track 7 – Full Papers V

Conference
3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT

Out-of-school Time STEM: Teach Programming Using Python for High School Girls

Chaoyi Wang and Michael Frye (University of the Incarnate Word, USA)

1
In the next decade, there is an enormous increase in job openings in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The early recognition of STEM talent is necessary to meet the demands of STEM labor force in the United States. Thus, it is essential for educators to apply diverse teaching methods to provide meaningful programming learning to students at High School level. In this study, the researchers designed an eight-session Python programming curriculum for high school girls and implemented in Girls in Engineering, Mathematics, Science (GEMS) STEAM program in San Antonio, Texas, USA. Through the analysis of pre- and post- surveys and interviews, the results showed that the Python programming course have created a fun and interesting learning environment. This eight-session course effectively expanded students' previous knowledge about programming and increase their interests in computer science (CS). In the process of learning, students developed the problem-solving skills. This study suggested that it is important for educators to create a fun and interactive learning environment when teaching programming for high school girls. There is a need of more efforts and opportunities which needs to be provided for girls to increase their participation in CS.

Encouraging Higher Education STEM Careers Through Robotics Competitions

Rodrigo A Canek (Universidad Galileo, Guatemala); Pablo A Torres (Student Universidad Galileo, Guatemala); Oscar Rodas (Universidad Galileo & Tesla Lab, Guatemala)

2
Over the years, statistics from different universities have shown that not enough professionals graduate from higher education careers focused on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). For the last 5 years, a series of university outreach programs in Guatemala have been created promoting robotics, technology and engineering. These programs are focused in students from elementary to high school, where the participants are able to experience with robotics, while developing their STEM and soft skills and having fun. As a result of the outreach program of Universidad Galileo, two Robotics Competitions were held in Universidad Galileo campus; later evolving to three National Robotics Competitions, three participations in First Global Challenge (FGC) and two participations in Robomatrix Continental. After different surveys distributed and several feedback meetings with former National Team members, we can ensure that at least 75% of these students will be encouraged to follow a higher education STEM career or work in a STEM related job. Our filtering process has been improved to choose our international team members from a bigger pool and in a more accurate way. Our initial participation started with 8 students selected from a pool of 100 students and the last participation with 18 students from a pool of more than 2,400 students. We have proven that using multiple courses, MOOCs, workshops and the possibility to participate in national and international competitions encourages students to choose a higher education STEM related career in the near future.

Development of low-cost IoT devices to encourage STEM skills in Guatemalan environments

Yeisson R Chicas (Universidad Galileo, Guatemala); Angel Isidro and Oscar Rodas (Universidad Galileo & Tesla Lab, Guatemala)

0
Industry 4.0 was first introduced in Germany in 2006. As leading countries of this initiative, we can mention various European and Asian countries and the United States. The main axis that Industry 4.0 has are Internet of Things (IoT), Virtual Reality, 3D Printing, Cloud Computing, among others. Guatemala is becoming a technology hub country. Various web development or BPO companies have migrated their technology departments to our country because people have well developed STEM skills. Their main activities involved web development, infrastructure and help desk collaborations. However, hardware development is not an economic pillar to develop our country yet. In Universidad Galileo we created academic and outreach programs based on IoT to change the mindset of young students and professionals to become technology producers and not only technology consumers or users. Our two-year research, the workshops developed, and the feedback obtained by participants in our technology events ensures that our STEM programs are building the correct skills in people to help develop Industry 4.0 in Guatemala.

Designing the curriculum for a minor in Cyber Criminology

Rajesh Prasad (Saint Anselm College, Manchester, NH, USA); Liana Pennington (Saint Anselm College, USA)

0
We are living in an age of growing cyber crime and the costs associated with it. With more and more people and devices being connected through the Internet, there are plenty of opportunities for new kinds of criminal activity as the Internet provides cyber criminals with anonymity and global reach. According to the FBI, in 2018 the Internet Crime Compliant Center (IC3) received 351,936 complaints with total losses exceeding $2.7 billion. The threat of cyber crime is real and pertinent when the Internet is intertwined with our everyday lives. We must prepare today's undergraduate students, tomorrow's future workforce, to fight this growing threat of cyber crime. If we do not prepare today, we will be vulnerable tomorrow. This paper details our experiences in developing and implementing an interdisciplinary minor in Cyber Criminology. The minor is designed for students who are interested in learning about cyber crime from the dual perspectives of computer science and criminal justice.

Influencing factors to choose STEM areas: The case of Mexican strongly STEM-oriented high school students

Angeles Dominguez (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico & Universidad Andres Bello, Chile); Santa Tejeda and Blanca Ruiz (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico)

0
The need to deepen understand the factors and actors that influence students' perceptions to pursue an academic and professional future in STEM areas has been study for over 30 years. In this study, we focus on students who are strongly oriented to science, technology, engineering and mathematics to investigate what motivates them, who has been cultivating that inclination. High school students who attended an international science contest on mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and computing (over 600 participants in total) were invited to participate in a focus group. Thirteen students attended the call. The session lasted over 90 minutes and was video-recorded. The names of the participants are kept anonymous for this report. All the session was transcribed, and a group of researchers analyzed the data based on an adaptation of the expectancy-value theory. Results indicate that students do not feel they have the expected support from their schools, instead, their main support comes from their families (particularly their parents). It was interested to find that for this group of students, their conceptualization of STEM and their interest in how science and technology could be used to fulfill their aspiration (for a better world) came out to be a main factor to keep them pursuing their goals.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

Watch IEEE.TV Recording
Session Track-08

Track 8 – Full Papers VI

Conference
3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT

Virtual Collaboration Training for Freshman Undergraduate STEM Students

Eric Nersesian, Jessica Ross-Nersesian, Adam Spryszynski and Michael J Lee (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA)

0
Higher educational institutions formalize socialization for their incoming undergraduate student populations with traditional forms of physical classroom-based learning community (LC) skill-building environments; however, recent studies have shown that virtual LC environments can offer improved results over physical LC environments. This study examines whether incoming undergraduate STEM students gain the same benefits to their academic performance regardless of whether they receive LC training in physical or virtual reality (VR) treatment. We found that either treatment of collaboration training improve the participants' academic performance in comparison to the control treatment. In addition, we found that the VR participants gave more academic help in social settings to their peers throughout the semester than their control group counterparts. Upon interviewing the two treatment group participants, we found that virtualization of collaboration may impact perceptions on leadership roles, group functions, and thinking about the future. This research shows that virtualizing LCs has the potential to expand and supplement existing learning structures, and create new ones where they were not previously available, and aims to offer a better understanding of the strengths and limitations of introducing VR technologies in higher education.

Lyapunov Based Trajectory Tracking Dynamic Control for a Qbot-2

Sabiha Wadoo (New York Institute of Technology, USA); Marc Vazquez and Mateusz Ardito-Proulx (NYIT, USA)

0
This paper presents the nonlinear control for a QBot2. Qbot2 is a differential drive wheeled mobile robot (WMR). In this paper we use both kinematic as well as dynamic models of the robot for the objective of trajectory tracking. The models are nonlinear and the control for trajectory tracking will be achieved using nonlinear control methodologies. The kinematic control is designed using a Lyapunov based nonlinear feedback control. The dynamic controller is developed using the method of backstepping. The paper presents the hardware implementation of both kinematic and dynamic controllers on the QBot2. The controllers are implemented on the system hardware using QUARC. QUARC is a MATLAB-Simulink based software where the results for tracking are obtained in real time. The controllers are implemented on the system hardware using QUARC. QUARC is a MATLAB-Simulink based software where the results for tracking are obtained in real time. for tracking are obtained in real time.

Evaluation of Smartphone-based Sound Level Meters

Trinity Cheng (River Hill High School, USA)

2
Free, widely-available smartphone-based sound level meters have been utilized to collect large quantities of distributed data in short time periods for the efficient creation of crowd-sourced noise maps. However, the accuracy of these apps can vary greatly as previous studies have shown. In this study, four smartphone-based sound level meters were tested to evaluate their agreement. Four experiments were conducted to test the impact of different apps, operating systems, smartphone hardware, and microphones on app measurements at different sound levels. A combination of four apps, four smartphones, two operating systems, and two microphone types were used in the tests, as well as a hardware-based sound level meter. Errors were evaluated based on two evaluation methods-root mean square error and linearity. The experiment results show that all of the apps produced different readings with respect to the same input stimulus. In other words, each of the apps, operating systems, smartphone hardware, and external microphones influenced the accuracy of smartphone-based sound level meters. Due to the wide variation in measurements, the usage of uncalibrated smartphone-based sound level meters seems to be unacceptable for serious noise assessments. However, the high linearity displayed by some apps indicates the potential for increased accuracy through calibration by professional-grade instruments.

STEM Outreach: A Literature Review and Definition

Ralph Tillinghast (US Army & CCDC Armaments Center, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ, USA); Daniel C Appel (US Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, NM & AEgis Technologies Group Inc., USA); Carla Winsor (University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA); Mo Mansouri (Stevens Institute of Technology, USA)

1
Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) professionals are in demand to meet the current challenges within our society. STEM outreach plays a critical role in promoting, understanding and increasing interest in the STEM disciplines. Outreach activities provide a unique platform to reach students through many delivery methods and audience tailoring that bring impacts otherwise unattainable through standard curricula. This work presents a literature framework and review of works that pertain to STEM outreach. As part of the review, a stakeholder analysis has been conducted. Resulting in an understanding of stakeholder needs, goals, and objectives, and analysis of STEM outreach efficacy for students from pre-K through post-graduate ages. From this review, a practical definition of STEM outreach is presented. The overall purpose of this work is to expand and aid in the further research to expand the benefits of outreach activities in the STEM fields to help prepare students for future STEM careers.

Student Performance Prediction from E-mail Assessments Using Tiny Neural Networks

Nikhil Yadav (St. John's University, USA); Kajal Srivastava (Jaipuria Institute of Management, India)

2
Predicting student performance using e-mail assessments can help in early interventions to better assist students sooner, rather than later, in STEM courses. In this paper, we propose CorC-Net, a tiny artificial neural network (ANN) that operates on limited data comprised of features scored from student assessments based on writing e-mails. ANNs are typically built using large scale data sets to truly realize their full potential; however, tiny neural networks overcome this problem by utilizing smaller batches of data making them easier to train. COrC-Net uses scored e-mails for content, organization, and clarity, and classifies how students will perform. Formative instructor feedback provided between the assessments implies that CorC-Net is a more logical fit to simulate the "learning" process when human reaction to feedback and corrective action is involved. This is true especially in sequential course assessment tasks. In this paper, we show that COrC-Net outperforms other multi-class classification algorithms like decision trees, support vector machines, Gaussian Naïve Bayes, and K-nearest neighbors. CorC-Net's success in classifying student performance shows great potential in courses where long-term temporal assessment data is not available.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

Watch IEEE.TV Recording
Session Track-09

Track 9 – Full Papers VII

Conference
3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT

Middle School Students Learn Binary Counting Using Virtual Reality

Eric Nersesian, Margarita Vinnikov, Jessica Ross-Nersesian, Adam Spryszynski and Michael J Lee (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA)

0
Educational fields that are abstract in nature, such as computer science (CS) and other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields may find alternative teaching methods useful to maximize student opportunities to internalize and process the curriculum. In designing alternative CS educational tools in virtual reality (VR) technologies, the objective is to expose an academically diverse population to CS in an engaging and immersive environment. With this objective in mind, we built and tested a CS educational VR experience designed to teach students to count in a binary (base-2) number system. We found that by presenting the subject matter in a way that is gamified, engaging, and private, students were not only able to learn the concepts, but were comfortable in the process. Students were observed verbally walking themselves through binary counting tasks, expressing frustration when trying to solve a problem, and breaking out into victory dances when eventually solving that problem. Testing confirmed that the student group who learned how to count in a binary number system through this VR application were just as successful as those who learned from a certified CS instructor. This shows that VR educational experiences can be used as alternative teaching tools in CS education, which can supplement traditional teaching methods enabling new learning methods for students in the classroom and at home. We believe that this is evidence to support a larger effort in adapting the current CS education system to meet the needs of a more diverse student body that may find alternative teaching tools useful in internalizing abstract concepts.

Evaluation of a Snake Jaw Robot to Teach Integrated Biology, Mathematics, and Engineering

Lauren Garofalo, Samantha Sandler and Deeksha Seth (Villanova University, USA)

0
Due to the popularity of biomimicry, the integration of biology and applied sciences is becoming increasingly visible in curricula, especially in museums where animal-related behaviors are popular. Recognizing the need for interactive tools that can make the integrated education fun and effective, a biologically accurate model of a snake jaw was developed to teach an integrated lesson on biology, mathematics, and engineering. The goal of this work was to evaluate the effect of using the snake jaw robot on students' interest in engineering, biology, mathematics, perception of the robot's effectiveness, and ability to make connections between nature and engineering. Data was collected by administering a survey with 71 sophomore mechanical engineering students at Villanova University. The group of students was given a short lesson on the python jaw, focusing on the quadrate bone's function, followed by a demonstration. The group was split into two cohorts. The first cohort's demonstration used the robot while the second cohort's demonstration used an existing educational video. The survey was administered after the session. The results showed promise for both educational tools, the video, and the robot, compared to traditional lectures or problems commonly found in classes. The use of the robot showed significant benefit compared to the video when it came to students' interest in engineering and integration as well as students' ability to make connections between different disciplines. A complete understanding of the effectiveness of the robot can help (a) enhance educational programs by making them more integrated and hands-on, and (b) develop useful educational robots that can be used to instill an integrative mindset in students from a young age.

Interdisciplinary Project Based Learning Approach for Machine Learning and Internet of Things

Muhammad Safeer Khan and Mohamed Ibrahim (Arkansas Tech University, USA); Nansong Wu (Sonoma State University, USA); Rajvardhan Patil (Arkansas Tech University, USA)

0
This paper reports on the use of interdisciplinary project based learning approach for undergraduate engineering education in machine/deep learning, and internet of things (IoT). Machine learning has evolved from pattern recognition and is an important element of artificial intelligence. IoT has also seen rapid growth in multiple application domains including embedded systems, wireless sensor networks, control systems, automation, and sensors. A challenge for traditional electrical/computer engineering curriculum is to effectively educate students in these areas without introducing specialized courses covering these subjects. There is a need to develop a project based learning approach to involve undergraduate students in real-world problem solving to develop use cases of machine learning and IoT. This paper reports on implementation of an interdisciplinary project based learning approach followed in undergraduate electrical/computer engineering curriculum. The students were involved in solving real-world problems through machine/deep learning. They also developed IoT applications in multiple domains to address limitations of existing systems and to go through the engineering design process. The qualitative results indicate that the PBL approach was highly effective in improving their learning outcomes.

Electrical Engineering Core Course Laboratory Creation for Non-STEM Majors

Christopher Martino, Dan Opila, Brent West, Louiza Sellami, John Stevens and Deborah Mechtel (United States Naval Academy, USA)

2
Practical laboratory exercises improve student understanding and motivation for learning abstract engineering concepts. The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the United States Naval Academy (USNA), a four-year undergraduate institution, is tasked with teaching all students a course in electrical circuits and power. One version of the course is targeted for non-STEM majors. A part of this course involves a weekly two-hour laboratory period to assist in drawing out these abstract concepts. The instructors for the Electrical Engineering circuits and power course for non-STEM majors jointly developed and troubleshot a series of five real-world, laboratory experiments. These experiments are intended to demonstrate real world skills and applications of the abstract concepts covered during the class. This paper describes the laboratory experiments and reviews the student feedback received on the educational value perceived by the students in these new experiments. The laboratory experiments were also ranked for educational value perceived by the students.

Instrumentation & Investigation of Phage-Antibiotic Synergy on K. pneumoniae, H. alvei, and Transductant H. alvei

Ibnat Meah (Dallatown Area High School, USA); David Singleton (York College of Pennsylvania, USA)

0
Antibiotics are powerful medicines that fight certain infections and can save lives when used properly. However, with bacteria becoming more resistant to antibiotics, new methods to treat bacterial infections are needed. One promising method for treating bacteria is the use of bacteriophages: viruses that infect and kill bacteria. This experiment investigated the effect of phage-antibiotic synergism on Klebsiella pneumoniae, Hafnia alvei, and transductant ampicillin-resistant Hafnia alvei. The trait for ampicillin resistance was transferred from K. pneumoniae to H. alvei using a device that was constructed in the lab. The zones of inhibition were then measured around the bacteria that were treated with the antibiotic discs alone and the bacteria that were treated with both the bacteriophage and the antibiotic discs. Hafnia alvei, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and the transductant ampicillin-resistant Hafnia alvei colonies exhibited larger zones of inhibition when the antibiotics were used in conjunction with the bacteriophages compared to when the antibiotics were used alone. The bacteriophages also made the transductant ampicillin-resistant Hafnia alvei colonies slightly susceptible to ampicillin again. This project demonstrates STEM integration into a high school biological science project.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

Watch IEEE.TV Recording
Session Track-10

Track 10 – Full Papers VIII

Conference
3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT
Local
Aug 1 Sat, 3:00 PM — 4:30 PM EDT

A Hands-on Middle-School Robotics Software Program at MIT

Sabina Chen and Andrew Fishberg (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA); Eyassu Shimelis (MIT, USA); Joel Grimm (MIT Lincoln Laboratory, USA); Scott van Broekhoven (MIT, USA); Robert Shin (MIT Lincoln Laboratory, USA); Sertac Karaman (MIT, USA)

2
Robotics competitions at the high school level attract a large number of students across the world. However, there is little emphasis on leveraging robotics to get middle school students excited about pursuing STEM education. In this paper, we describe a new program that targets middle school students in a local, four-week setting at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). It aims to excite students by teaching the very basics of computer vision and robotics. The students program mini car-like robots, equipped with state-of-the-art computers, to navigate autonomously in a mock race track. We describe the hardware and software infrastructure that enables the program, the details of our curriculum, and the results of a short assessment. In addition, we describe four short programs, as well as a session where we teach high school teachers how to teach similar courses at their schools to their own students. The self-assessment indicates that the students feel more confident in programming and robotics after leaving the program, which we hope will enable them to pursue STEM education and robotics initiatives at school.

Active and Collaborative Learning Based Dynamic Instructional Approach in Teaching Introductory Computer Science Course with Python Programming

Mahmudur Rahman, Monir Sharker and Roshan Paudel (Morgan State University, USA)

1
In this era of smart devices, new technologies, gadgets, apps, and numerous systems and services available over online, teaching an introductory programming course by traditional lecture method faces challenges to draw student's attention; especially in their freshman year. In this work, we discuss our experience in teaching an introductory CS course by infusing both interactive and collaborative learning in pedagogy so that students can learn using interactive platforms, tools, technologies, systems, and services as available to them and collaboration within and among groups. For interactive learning, students used an interactive programming environment (e.g. repl.it classroom) as well as online eBooks. We designed several in-class exercises, assignments, small lab-based projects with example codes and expected outputs, and unit tests by using built-in unit tests library. We also, in the middle of semester, introduced collaborative learning through teamwork on well-defined projects during the learning time and submitted at the end. The collaborations include use of basic task management tools and multi-player tool of repl.it that the students can critic, supplement, improve peer works and learn. To evaluate the impact of this infusion, a pre- and post-survey were conducted on student cohort in two different semesters. The initial evaluation of the survey results and performances (final project and final grades) show evidence to conclude that the proposed pedagogical approach increased student motivation and engagement and facilitated learning to entry-level computer science students.

Student-Inspired Project-Based Learning in an Embedded Systems Course

Girma Tewolde (Kettering University, USA)

0
This paper presents the experience of the author from a senior embedded systems course at an engineering college. The course is primarily made up of lecture and laboratory components. Besides those two components the course also includes a peer-teaching component and a final-project. In the peer-teaching component the students are expected to choose a topic related to the course material, perform thorough research, and then present the material to teach it to the whole class. The goal of the final project component is to challenge the students to come up with a problem of their own that can be solved using the material learned in the course. The students are encouraged to dig deep into their creative minds and come up with practical projects that address real problems. They spend time to brainstorm ideas for their projects and present their proposals to the whole class for comments and approval, before they actually start to implement their work. The main take away from the experiences of these projects is that the students felt ownership of their projects and spent every effort to bring their ideas to fruition. Most of the project teams involved two or three students from different disciplines so they bring their expertise from their respective fields to the project. Overall, based on the grade performance of the students in the course and feedbacks received at the end of the course, this student-inspired project-based-learning approach was found to be successful in enhancing the learning experiences of the students.

STEM Outreach: A Stakeholder Analysis

Ralph Tillinghast (US Army & CCDC Armaments Center, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ, USA); Daniel C Appel (US Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, NM & AEgis Technologies Group Inc., USA); Carla Winsor (University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA); Mo Mansouri (Stevens Institute of Technology, USA)

2
The evolving challenges facing our society will increase demand for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) professionals. Educational outreach in STEM areas can supplement current educational systems to promote interest, increase understanding, and encourage students to pursue careers involving STEM fields. In order to maximize benefits from STEM educational outreach opportunities, developing a better understanding of stakeholders involved, and their needs, goals, and objectives across the educational ecosystem is required. This work presents a stakeholder analysis for the STEM outreach system intended to enhance understanding of how each stakeholder in the STEM educational outreach system of systems contributes towards unique goals of improving student understanding and success in pursuing educational and career goals within STEM fields. Understanding the dependencies and relationships between stakeholder entities enables further research and future improvements for STEM outreach initiatives. Ultimately, these efforts aim to provide key contributions to building the next generation of science and engineering professionals.

Performance Improvement of 18-bit ?? A/D Convertor

Aws Zuheer Yonis (Universitiy of Ninevah, Iraq); Khalid Mohammed (University of Mosul, Iraq)

1
The research paper presents a simulation study to develop and improve the overall performance of sigma delta (??) A/D modulator, the circuit structure and technique used were explained and the processes of different parameters of ?? modulator over the conventional modulator were explained clearly. Simulated results of the proposed ?? system shows a good improvement in the spurious noise produced by the conventional A/D converter. The advancement of technology made the modulators important component of any electronic system, generally the signal is analog in many applications such as telecommunications, video and computer system that depend on digital or binary signal in it is operation, where it became necessary to convert the analog signal to a digital signal to take advantage of the power, flexibility and reliability of digital signal processing. The converters are complex because of consisting of many of the components of analog, such as Op-amps, sample and holds and comparative, therefore these modulators are very difficult to design, especially when they are implemented practically.

Outlook of Commonly used Biometrics and Assessment of Best Trait for High Level Security

Shahad Sultan (University of Mosul, Iraq) and Mayada Faris Ghanim (University of Mosul, Iraq)

2
A biometric based authentication system is a security system that provide an automatic user authentication to access some areas, which require a certain level of security. Such a system is built based on some biometric traits possessed by the user. Although there are many authentic systems can be built based on different human biometrics such as face, fingerprints, iris, hand and finger geometry and voice etc. but all of these biometrics have their drawbacks and all of them can easily be forged. Human retina is a biometric trait that provides secure and reliable source of person recognition as it is unique, universal, lies at the rare end of the eye and hence it is unforgeable. Therefore, among all other biometrics human retina can be used to build a high-level security system. This paper makes an outlook on the commonly used biometric traits and states a comparison among them to prove that human retina is the best one for high level security areas.

Session Chair

To Be Determined

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