Grants Help Innovation in the Classroom

Susan Smith from RIT's Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences and RIT/NTID student Gloria Wink with a microplate reader.

More than $52,000 was recently awarded to NTID by the New York State Department of Education so new technology can be used to teach deaf and hard-of-hearing students.

The grants will be divided among four projects and will help open doors in non-traditional careers for the students as well as providing innovative instruction. The grants also include funding for equipment and supports faculty who will develop curriculum.

• Exploring the use of Classroom/Lecture Capture Technology to improve persistence of deaf/hard-of-hearing college students in technical and career associate degree programs. Through added media from video, audio and course content, this study will provide deaf and hard-of-hearing students within NTID’s Business Studies program with access to recorded lectures and will correlate use of recordings to students’ grades. Wesley Blue, interim manager of NTID’s Learning Center, is the principal investigator for this project.

• Department of Engineering Studies’ Training and Curriculum Development. Faculty members will receive professional development training to improve instruction, specifically with Computer Aided Drafting Technology and Computer Integrated Machining Technology. The training will enhance inspection skills in Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerance. Dino Laury, chair of NTID’s Engineering Studies department, is the principal investigator.

• Instrumentation for Broadening High-Tech Career Opportunities for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Laboratory Science Technology Students. A collaboration between NTID and RIT’s College of Science plans to expand career opportunities for graduates in emerging areas of medical/health care and green/sustainable technologies by acquiring new equipment, lesson plans and obtained co-ops. Students will use the equipment to identify the presence of certain antibodies in a person’s body with a blood sample. Todd Pagano, an associate professor and director of Laboratory Science Technology, is the principal investigator, with Assistant Professor Susan B. Smith as collaborator.

• Using Social Media and Online Video Applications, with Added Peer Tutoring Support, for Classroom and Lab-Based Instruction in Two-Year and Certificate CTE Programs at NTID. Support will be given to instructors to explore new uses of social media and online video applications. Also, video camera with remote control capability will be used to support lab-based instruction in the NTID Performing Arts Technical Certificate Program. Simon Ting, an instructional developer for NTID’s Information Services, is the principal investigator.

In addition to the state grants, other grants have been awarded from Ronald D. Dodge Memorial Endowment Fund supporting research and development efforts:

• Graphic Storytelling as Part of the Classroom Curriculum for Deaf Students. This project is an experiment to see if student comprehension of curricular materials is improved when course materials and information is presented in a graphics-based, sequential storytelling style as opposed to text-based curricular materials. This project will explore the impact of visual clarity and visual organization of information. The projected result will be an improvement in comprehension and application of course materials to student learning efforts in the classroom. Kurt Stoskopf, assistant professor in NTID’s Visual Communications Studies Department, will direct this project.

• Online Technologies to Facilitate Access for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Students in Lab Courses. An experiment to use a blend of face-to-face and online activities to increase the amount of peer learning, and providing opportunities for deaf and hard-of-hearing students to interact on an equal basis with hearing students in lab settings. Harvey Pough, professor in RIT’s School of Life Sciences, will direct this project.

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Susan Murad
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