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Collaborations across the University

EHE Office of Research
March 20, 2017

We want to highlight seven of our college’s most interesting and productive collaborations between faculty from our college and other colleges at Ohio State. These projects reflect the importance of building relationships and working together.

Investigating and Improving Synthesis Problem-Solving Skills in Introductory Physics via Analogical Reasoning

Sponsor: National Science Foundation (Research on Education and Learning)

PI:  Lin Ding (EHE). Co-PI:  Andrew Heckler (Physics)

The focus of this project is to investigate and improve student skills in solving synthesis problems in introductory physics - that is: problems that require a joint application of multiple physics concepts including those taught in different chapters or at significantly different times in the course. Differing from the traditional textbook exercises and closer to real-world situations, these synthesis problems cannot be easily solved by using formula-based “plug-and-chug” approaches. Rather, they require students to recognize and coordinate multiple key concepts in order to reach a successful solution. This project directly targets undergraduate students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) who are enrolled in college-level introductory physics courses.

Comprehensive Lifestyle Intervention Program for Knee Osteoarthritis Patients (CLIP-OA)

Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (National Institute on Aging)

PI: Brian Focht (EHE). Co-PI: Kevin Hackshaw (Immunology and Rheumatology)

The aim of this project is to develop efficacious and sustainable lifestyle interventions in health promotion and disease prevention efforts for patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA), especially those who are overweight. At the completion of this project the comparative effectiveness of two community-based interventions will be known: community-based exercise+dietary weight loss program versus the Arthritis Foundation’s Walk With Ease Exercise program. The primary positive impact of the trial is that the results of this study could alter the Arthritis Foundation’s approach to the management of the functional consequences and symptoms of knee OA in communities nationwide.

EiE (Engineering is Elementary) Ohio – Building 21st-Century Learners

Sponsor: Ohio Department of Higher Education (Improving Teacher Quality)

PI:  Karen Irving (EHE). Co-PIs:  Kathy Malone (EHE), Andrew Heckler (Physics), Rachel Kajfez (Engineering Education)

This project is a collaboration between multiple Ohio State colleges and the Columbus City Schools to bring STEM-integrated engineering units to high-needs elementary schools. Introducing science and mathematics in engineering contexts exposes young children to a variety of engineering, science and technical careers. Early introduction to engineering can encourage many capable students—including females and other under-represented groups in STEM fields—to consider engineering as a future career choice. The collaborative nature of the design projects helps students develop the skills needed for effective teamwork, which is useful because communication skills are important for success.

Modeling Biology Instruction: Leaders in Science and Engineering

Sponsor: Ohio Department of Higher Education (Improving Teacher Quality)

PI:  Kathy Malone (EHE). Co-PIs:  Karen Irving (EHE), Lin Ding (EHE), Kathleen Harper (Engineering Education), Zakee Sabree (Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology)

The objective of this project to improve the content knowledge of 63 teachers and over 1,800 students in high-needs secondary schools using a professional development model that has teachers teaching teachers, along with cutting-edge exposure to biological and engineering researchers. These teacher leaders will be trained in biology and engineering concepts, assist in developing both a diagnostic concept assessment (S-BCI) and teacher educative materials, and pilot curricular units with bioengineering projects they develop with project staff.  Then, with the support of Ohio State biology and engineering faculty, they will provide a 90-hr summer institute for 60 teachers from high-needs secondary schools.

Effect of n-3 Fatty Acids and Sugars on Chemotherapy-induced Cognitive Deficits

Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (National Cancer Institute)

PI: Tonya Orchard (EHE). Co-PIs: Rebecca Andridge (Public Health), Martha Belury (EHE), Joshua Bomser (EHE), Courtney Devries (Neuroscience), Maryam Lustberg (Medical Oncology)

The primary objective of this project is to use a randomized, placebo-controlled trial to determine the extent to which dietary supplementation with n-3 fatty acids reduces neuroinflammation and prevents cognitive decline in women receiving chemotherapy after breast cancer surgery, and whether n-3 fatty acids are more effective in women whose usual diets are lower in added sugars. Also examined are the mechanisms through which chemotherapy impairs cognitive performance and the potential of added sugars to modify the neuroprotective effects of n-3 fatty acids by including experiments using a translational mouse model. The protocol closely approximates the chemotherapy regimen commonly used to treat women with breast cancer.

Functions for Programming: Computer Modeling in Algebra

Sponsor: National Science Foundation (STEM+Computing)

PI:  Arnulfo Perez (EHE). Co-PIs: Kathy Malone (EHE), Christopher Stewart (Computer Science and Engineering)

Through its focus on algebra—the most widely taken high school mathematics course—Computer Modeling in Algebra will pilot an approach that has the potential to put computer science squarely in the path of virtually every high school student. This project will combine the pedagogical content knowledge of researchers in STEM education and the computational prowess of computer scientists to infuse programming and computer modeling into a project-based algebra unit on linear functions taught to students from a range of backgrounds. Teachers and students will develop an understanding of computational thinking as a way of creatively approaching tasks using fundamental concepts from computer science.

Urban G.E.M.S. (Grow Fresh, Eat Fresh, Market Fresh, and Sustain Healthy Communities)

Sponsor: United States Department of Agriculture (National Institute of Food and Agriculture)

PI: Deanna Wilkinson. Co-PIs: Laquore Meadows (OSU Extension), AnaClaudia Zubieta (OSU Extension)

Urban GEMS is a multifaceted, 21st-century youth development initiative designed to reduce high school dropout by enriching the science, health, personal and career development curricular offerings at two community sites for youth and families at high risk. Students build competencies in youth leadership, teamwork, project development, project management, microbusiness operations, professionalism, event planning and Internet and social media marketing. Faculty and staff from OSU Extension and SNAP-Ed provide classes on nutrition, expertise on sustainable agriculture, and program evaluation. Additional partners are the National Center for Urban Solutions (NCUS) and the African American Male Wellness Walk.

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