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2018 DELTA Awards

In its inaugural year, DELTA provided funding for six projects, which were selected from a highly competitive field of 64 proposals. Each of the funded projects will deploy innovative uses of digital technology to enhance the university’s teaching and learning enterprise for a wide variety of populations, including Johns Hopkins graduate students, undergraduates, and faculty as well as high school students in Baltimore.

Augmented Reality for Immersive 3-D Education in Complex Pelvic Trauma Surgery

Principal Investigator: Greg M. Osgood, chief of Orthopaedic Trauma, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, School of Medicine

The key challenge in treating unstable pelvic fractures, the proposal says, is that the doctors have to do mental mapping of plate positioning and screw trajectories to the fractured anatomy, a skill that surgeons-in-training cannot easily acquire from conventional two-dimensional materials. The grant will be used to create a three-dimensional learning environment that incorporates augmented reality.

Faculty Forward: A Faculty Fellows Program Focused on Best Practices in Teaching and Learning and Technology

Principal Investigator: Tim Collins, program chair of Engineering Management and of Technical Management, Engineering for Professionals, Whiting School of Engineering

Faculty Forward is designed as a blended faculty development program for instructors who teach online or with digital technology. The program includes several days of intensive workshop sessions combined with online modules that will model the best practices in teaching and learning, online course design, and innovative uses of technology. The project team anticipates that the faculty fellows who complete the program will push the boundaries for what is possible in online and digital learning.

Hacking Harmony

Principal Investigator: Susan Forscher Weiss, professor of Musicology, Peabody Institute

Traditionally, hackathons focus on teams leveraging their technical expertise to find new solutions to a problem. This project proposes asking Peabody music students to partner with students in computer science and engineering from the Homewood campus to create apps, devices, or wearable tech items that allow the user to explore and learn about an aspect of music performance or music history.

Update: The winning hackathon project was developed by Mateo Abascal (KSAS ’21), Matthew Lee (WSE ’21), and Julian Orillac (WSE ’20). Dubbed Robostrum, it is an electromyographic (EMG) prosthetic made of red bull cans capable of detecting chords played on any fretted string instrument.

Personalized Augmented Reality as an Interactive Teaching Tool for Facial Anatomy

Principal Investigators: Nikki Tang and Elise Ng, cutaneous surgery and oncology unit, Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine

According to the proposal, anatomy is one of the most challenging subject matters to both teach and learn, and facial anatomy is one of the most complex regions. This project proposes to design an augmented reality simulator that will help teach this especially challenging aspect of anatomy.

Voices From Afar: Introducing Global Perspectives Into Public Health Teaching and Learning

Principal Investigator: Sukon Kanchanaraksa, director of the Center for Teaching and Learning and senior scientist, Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health

This project will acquire and deploy a system to enable simple and cost-effective production of high-quality video interviews with public health experts located all over the world, thereby incorporating a more diverse array of voices and perspectives into the Bloomberg School’s online courses and degree programs. Previous efforts to produce video interviews with remote subject matter experts were hindered by technological and logistical barriers.

Yellowdig: Enhancing Student Engagement in Digital Settings

Principal Investigators: Kathleen Day, lecturer, Toby Gordon, associate professor, Brian Gunia, associate professor, Alexandra Klaren, assistant professor, Richard G. Milter, professor, and Supriya Munshaw, lecturer, Carey Business School

Student participation in meaningful discussions is foundational to engagement and academic achievement in online courses. As a result, the Instructional Technology team at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School will implement the Yellowdig online discussion platform in order to increase online interaction and engagement levels, improve quality of discussion posts, increase retention rates for each course, and, ultimately, increase student satisfaction. Yellowdig allows students to connect and engage in ways not possible with the traditional LMS-based discussion boards. Students can up-vote, comment on posts, and gain a level of influence in the community. Content and discussions can be organized through topics, which helps to highlight individual-level contributions and promote more sophisticated social interactions and engagement.

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