Computer Science Professor Nilufer Onder was ranked in the top 10% across all university classes for student evaluation scores. Onder’s ranking for Fall 2014 was based among other classes with a similar size of 50 students. She taught CS3311, Formal Methods of Computing, last semester and earned a score of 4.85 on the Question of Excellent Teacher and her score for the average of the seven elements of the evaluation was a 4.74. Please join Max Seel, Provost and Vice-President for Academic Affairs and Computer Science Department Chair Min Song in congratulating Nilufer Onder on her scores.
The Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominee for this week comes from the College of Sciences and Arts. Dean Bruce Seely has chosen to recognize Scott Kuhl, an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science with an adjunct appointment in Cognitive and Learning Sciences. Dean Seely values “what Scott Kuhl attempts to accomplish as a teacher mainly for the mindset he employs, and less for the specific teaching techniques has adopted.” He notes that Scott “does not differentiate between regular classes, summer youth and support for Enterprise activities as educational venues—but approaches all with the goal of creating a fun and motivating environment.”
In his more traditional courses, Scott does attribute his teaching success to specific techniques, like providing detailed assignment descriptions with numerous tips to “help get students going in the right direction.” He also provides numerous examples, some of which he walks through in class in detail, and encourages students to share additional examples with each other. Finally, he emphasizes prompt feedback for his students. He has accomplished this by creating an automatic grading program which provides a “provides a transparent, well-defined set of expectations for assignments” and a score that can be adjusted by an instructor or grader as necessary. He’s even willing to share this tool with those interested.
Kuhl is also focused on continual improvement. Though the Husky Game Development (HGD) Enterprise he leads is focused on games, he attributes its dramatic growth under his leadership to a careful cycle of feedback, change and evaluation. He sees the value of interdisciplinary teamwork, communication, development and management for students in HGD, and has led the group in both publishing academic papers and receiving sponsorship from both Chrysler and the Department of Labor.
Scott will be formally recognized with the 11 other Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominees at a luncheon near the end of spring term. Please join Dean Seely, computer science chair Min Song and the Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning in thanking Scott for his outstanding contributions to the teaching mission of the College of Sciences and Arts.
Houghton Makes Energy Prize Semifinals
by Jennifer Donovan, director of news and media relations
Tomorrow, Houghton County is hosting a community-wide celebration as Georgetown University announces that the county has advanced to the semifinals in the national Georgetown University Energy Prize. Many Michigan Tech faculty, staff and students are helping promote Houghton County’s entry, an initiative launched and led by Michigan Tech computer science graduate student Abhilash Kantamneni.
“We have a visionary local government that’s willing to work with Michigan Tech and help educate the community,” Kantamneni said. “We have one of the best engineering schools in the US, with huge expertise in green energy. Together, we could be a model community, an example for everyone.”
Houghton County Dems to host Solar Power presentation TONIGHT, Jan. 7, at Super 8
The meeting will feature a presentation by Abhilash “Abhi” Kantamnemi, a research engineer at the Keweenaw Research Center. He has done extensive research into the viability of solar power in the Upper Peninsula and has helped several area residents install solar power for themselves.
“The basics of solar is really pretty straightforward; a lot of people in the area have installed solar themselves,” Kantamnemi said. “Your installs could be 50 percent cheaper if you DIY (do it yourself).”
Houghton energy team wants community oversight
The Houghton Energy Efficiency Team, or HEET, had its monthly meeting Tuesday to discuss forming a Community Advisory Board. The six–person board includes supporters from local organizations and government officials.
“We also need a sort of oversight from members of the community to help regulate the ideas that they come up with to see what is feasible and what is not and to make sure that the ideas that we propose are accessible to every member of the community,” HEET member Abhi Kantamneni said.
Houghton County, HEET celebrate semifinalist status for Georgetown University Energy Prize competition
At the Sept. 17, 2014, Community Visioning Meeting for Saving Energy, held at the Finnish American Heritage Center in Hancock, HEET organizer Abhilash (“Abhi”) Kantamneni, a PhD student in Computer Science at Michigan Tech and a researcher in solar energy, points out that electric rates for the Upper Peninsula are among the highest in the U.S.
Professor Ching-Kuang Shene (CS) has received $53,396 from NSF through the University of Notre Dame for the first year of a potential two-year research and development project totaling $67, 216, “CGV: Small:Graph-Based Techniques for Visual Analytics of Big Scientific Data.”
From Tech Today
CS Assistant Professor Scott Kuhl was conference chair for the ACM Symposium on Applied Perception 2014, publications chair for ACM Symposium on Spatial User Interaction 2014, and a workshops chair for IEEE Virtual Reality 2014.
Philart Jeon: PI, National Health Institute. “NRI: Colloborative: Interactive Robotic Orchestration – Music-based emotion and social interaction therapy for children with ASD,” 2014-2017.
Philart Jeon: Co-PI, US DOT-OST, National University Rail Center Project. “NURail-Tier I,” 2014-2017
Robert Pastel & Charles Wallace: CI-Team, National Science Foundation.”Environmental CyberCitizens: Engaging Citizen Scientists in Global Environmental Change through Crowdsensing and Visualization,” 2011 and on-going
Laura Brown & Zhenlin Wang: Co-PI, National Science Foundation. “Adaptive Memory Resource Management in a Data Center – A Transfer Learning Approach,” 2014-2017
Leo Ureel: Recipient, Jackson Blended Learning Grant. “Canvas TA: Auto Program Feedback,” 2014-2015
CS Adjunct Assistant Professor Myounghoon (Philart) Jeon was appointed as an Associate Editor of MIT Journal Presence: Teleoperations and Virtual Environments and appointed as Chair-elect of Affective Design Technical Committee in the International Ergonomics Association.