Faculty Projects

Our faculty run a wide variety of research projects and labs. Topics include education, computer science, human-computer interaction (HCI), information sciences, engineering, media studies, cognitive science, and psychology.

The Early Career Research Project

The goal of this project is to examine student development outcomes and equity among doctoral students in the biological sciences. The project will follow 268 biology students through the final stages of graduate school and into their careers, considering how features of graduate education affect career trajectories. Feldon, D. F. (P.I.), Roksa, J., & Griffin, K. (2018-2022). Trajectories into Early Career Research (Division of Graduate Education; DGE 1760894), $2,459,199.

Contact David Feldon Visit Site

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Educational Data Mining Approaches for Digital Libraries

Investigate how to use digital library and online learning resources to apply web usage data mining strategies and Educational Data Mining (EDM), combined with other strategies, to better understand science teacher behaviors, motivations, and learning experiences.

Funded through the National Science Foundation.

Contributors: Mimi Recker, Beijie Xu, Bart Palmer, Sherry His, Rob Rothfarb

Contact Mimi Recker Visit Site

laptop with data on screen

Learn, Explore, Design Lab (L.E.D.)

The LED Lab employs equity-focused, justice-centered, and community-based methodologies to investigate how people learn and grow through making, designing, experiencing, and producing. We support a variety of projects including multi-year externally funded grant projects and student-led projects across out-of-school, K-12, and community contexts. Review our active projects here .

Funded by the National Science Foundation, Spencer Foundation, American Educational Research Association, USU's Center for Intersectional Gender Studies and Research, USU's Office of Research, and USU's Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services.

Contributors: The LED Lab is directed by Dr. Breanne Litts and made up of an interdisciplinary team of faculty, graduates, and undergraduates. Check out our current members here . We are always welcoming new team members!

Contact Breanne Litts Visit Site

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Playful Exploration Lab (PEL)

Focus on projects that explore women's persistence in Computer Science majors, and investigate different models that enhance girls’ interest in and capabilities to pursue CS programs and occupations.

Funded by the National Science Foundation, the Center for Women and Gender at USU, and Utah State University.

Contributors: Jody Clarke-Midura, Katarina Pantic, Frederick J. Poole, Megan Hamilton, Vincent Sun

Contact Jody Clarke-Midura Visit Site

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Stitching the Loop

An Electronic Textiles Unit in Exploring Computer Science. This new curriculum unit is full of resources for teachers to help students explore electronic textiles. They can make articles of cloth­ing, accessories, or home furnishings with embedded electronic and computational elements.

Funded through the National Science Foundation.

Contributors: Yasmin Kafai, Joanna Goode, and Jane Margolis

Contact Deborah Fields Visit Site

stitching the loop logo

CHAOS Learning Lab

The CHAOS learning lab is co-directed by Dr. Kristin Searle and Dr. Colby Tofel-Grehl (School of Teacher Education and Leadership). The lab focuses on integrated STEM and computer science learning for K-12 students and teachers, culturally responsive computing, and making activities for minoritized youth and communities. You can read more about the grant information on Dr. Searle's bio page.

Contact Kristen Searle Visit Site

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Supporting STEM

This project focuses on the use of scaffolding in STEM learning in formal and informal setting. Andrew Walker, who is interested in Problem-Based Pedagogy and meta-analysis, partnered with Brian Beland, who is interested in scaffold education. The researchers used meta-analysis to determine the impact of scaffolding on cognitive outcomes.

Funded through the National Science Foundation.

Contributors: Andrew Walker, Brian Belland

Contact Andrew Walker

people writing on notepad near laptops

Table Top 2 Screens

This project is studying approaches to help elementary students learn computational thinking skills by first playing a tabletop board game and then building game levels in Scratch, a block-based programming language.

Funded through the National Science Foundation.

Contributors: Mimi Recker, Victor Lee, Jody Clarke-Midura, Frederick Poole, Melissa Rasmussen, Courtney Stephens, Umar Shehzad and Jake Lauritsen

Contact Mimi Recker Visit Site

child playing on a tablet

The Theory Building Project

The goal of this project is to compare how kids design and construct theories of scientific phenomena, including computational models, by having kids engage with scientific practices and produce written theories. This project will be implemented as a two-week unit for middle school students.

Contact Hillary Swanson

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