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Research Report: In Pursuit of Excellence PowerPoint Presentation
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Research Report: In Pursuit of Excellence

Research Report: In Pursuit of Excellence

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Research Report: In Pursuit of Excellence

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  1. SMU Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) Research Report: In Pursuit of Excellence

  2. “we remain committed to achievement at the highest levels" President Gerald R. Turner On occasion of SMU’s highest ranking ever

  3. QEP Research Subcommittee • Dawn Youngblood – CUL (Chair) • Maggie Dunham – QEP Chair, Engineering • Jim Quick – Graduate Research • Thomas Coan, Robert Kehoe – Physics • Tom Fomby – Economics • John Ubelaker – Biology • Mathew Gayer – student (Pre-Med), director Health Literacy Dallas, Presidents Scholar ‘08 • Anne Hargis – student (Art History) reviewer of Undergraduate Research Programs

  4. 9 Questions  3 Areas • What is Research/Discovery? Describe the goals of research for undergraduates. Please refer to the University of Houston QEP report for ideas. • What Research/Discovery activities already exist at SMU? Be sure to include individual faculty REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) activities. Also include information about Departmental Distinction. • Identify student outcomes specifically related to your committee’s objectives. • For each outcome identify how this is to be measured. Be sure to include time frames for meeting specific outcomes. For example, do you expect that x% of undergraduate students at SMU will have completed a research/discovery component prior to graduation? • Recommend implementations specifics on how the Research goals will be implemented. Provide an outline of implementation over five years. Be sure to start with the current activities identified in #2. Is a faculty/staff position needed? What would the duties of this position be? • How can we ensure faculty participation? • Develop guidelines for an undergraduate research day/seminar to be held yearly on campus. • Develop guidelines for an undergraduate research grants program. • Recommend how Departmental Distinction can be expanded to include all undergraduate majors at SMU.

  5. 3 Main Areas Covered • (1) Overview: What we propose and why? • (2) Outcomes: How do we measure success? • (3) Implementations, Guidelines, and Recommendations. The last area is currently the most undeveloped as it is so dependent on the preceding areas.

  6. What and Why? What is Research/Discovery? Describe the goals of research for undergraduates. What Research/Discovery activities already exist at SMU?

  7. What is Research / Discovery? Undergraduate research/Creative projects “Independently or in small teams, and mentored by a faculty member, students do intensive and self-directed research or creative work that results in an original scholarly paper or other product that can be formally presented on or off campus.” (US News)

  8. Describe the goals of research for undergraduates… Objective: Why Undergraduate Research? Provide out-of-classroom learning experiences that allow application of class room knowledge to solve new problems Develop and foster an analytical approach to doing research Gain motivation and create new knowledge, fostering an ability to come up with creative solutions Excellent experience, preparation for graduate school Develop oral and written communication skills Promote interactions between faculty and students Make better informed decisions about future career

  9. What Research/Discovery activities already exist at SMU? • Assistantships --URA • Research Fair – yes UG’s • Hamilton Scholars • Provost’s Big iDeas • UGR Fellowships: Tower, Richter…

  10. Key ideas that may be most applicable to SMU from other institutions… • Undergraduate research publication • Campus-wide database delineating “all” research opportunities • Professional / office • Promotion of programs

  11. Select SMU student comments on other UG Research Programs: RE: TULANE’s Student Research Database: “As an undergraduate student I would love to have this kind of tool at my fingertips. A database for interested students to actively pursue their own academic interests beyond their classrooms would completely change Academic life at SMU, … In fact, Academic pursuits would be made more social. Furthermore, SMU students love nothing more than something great to put on their resumes …. If advertised properly, a database like this would be an enormous success. ” “As an undergrad myself I see that this open recognition and campus participation in research makes it an important part of University life, and does not make it an activity only for the extremely studious. At Baylor, academic research projects seem akin to involvement in Student Government or Campus Activities, in other words, it’s been made cool. I would love to see research be made a normal part of student life at SMU where social activities are so important to the student body.”

  12. Select SMU student comments on needs at SMU: “Visibility – Although we have the Research Day and occasional symposiums, the website, etc., I will admit as a student it is difficult to understand the options available. When I entered SMU I was pre-med and struggled to understand what programs existed. … Therefore, I think promotion and improvement of a central undergraduate student research page would be a step in the right direction. ….” “Student Driven Research – I am very thankful, as most students at SMU are, to participate in research with the many distinguished faculty we have at SMU. With this in mind though, almost all of the programs we have discussed or listed require the student to find a project they are interested in working with and having a faculty member they work for. From personal experience, I think it is important to have these opportunities, but also to give students a chance to create and perform their own research projects….”

  13. Key ideas that may be most applicable to SMU from other institutions… • Undergraduate research publication editorial, not refereed? Mentor-approved, editor – who is audience? • AWARDS -- UGR Mentoring, Student Publication, Student Competition / Presentation/ Posters • Database of UGR opportunities -- may use the technology of Mustang traks or career center, but need someone to co-ordinate, promote, talk up, create interest….

  14. Outcomes Identify student outcomes specifically related to your committee’s objectives. For each outcome identify how this is to be measured. Be sure to include time frames for meeting specific outcomes. For example, do you expect that x% of undergraduate students at SMU will have completed a research/discovery component prior to graduation?

  15. Outcomes & Measures • Paper? : National UGRJ; SMU online UGRJ, or a secondary in professional journal • Presentation? Or Poster? Professional conference or SMU Research Fair • Patent registry? • Competition entry? Fair, Awards (Goldwater….) • Public Discussion /Forum? • Graded by mentor, independent study? • Evaluated by relevant committee • Senior Thesis – committee, advisor • Tagged – departmental distinction • Tie in to graduation requirements?

  16. Physics as Example • Report for mentor • Conference result – preliminary step; basic analysis, feedback • Undergraduate research journals –such as Journal of UGR in Physics • UG may do a piece – participate; development of a tool or technique

  17. Implementations, Guidelines, and Recommendations Recommend specifics on how the Research goals will be implemented. Provide an outline of implementation over five years starting with the current activities identified in #2. Is a faculty/staff position needed? What would the duties of this position be? How can we ensure faculty participation? Develop guidelines for an undergraduate research day/seminar to be held yearly on campus. Develop guidelines for an undergraduate research grants program. Recommend how Departmental Distinction can be expanded to include all undergraduate majors at SMU.

  18. What’s next? • Do we add the creative element? • How do we involve the library? • Write down what is not being done anywhere on campus regarding UGR