Prof. Richert Wang Receives Grant for Undergraduate Curricula

Prof. Richert Wang in collaboration with Prof. Phill Conrad, Prof. John Gilbert, Prof. Ben Hardekopf, Prof Yekaterina Kharitonova, Dr. Ziad Matni, and Prof. Diba Mirza of the Computer Science department put forth a proposal for UCSB’s Instructional Improvement Program Grant. With the increasing number of students entering the computer science major with programming experience through Advanced Placement (AP) computer science courses, community college, and/or self-study, it was apparent changes needed to be made to the CS undergraduate curriculum structure. Their proposition was to restructure the lower-division CS curriculum to improve the learning experience for both CS and non-CS majors by offering two-tracks: one track designed for CS majors and another track that applies CS in the context of other disciplines. This restructuring effort will also seek cross-department collaborations to provide relevant CS courses to address the high demand for CS education for all students.

The Faculty Grants Committee was supportive of the intent and potential educational impact of Professor Wang’s proposed project and it was granted for support at the level of a large project!

The 2018-2019 Instructional Improvement Program Grant focus was on large, department-level project affecting significant numbers of students. This year’s program was intended to support major development or restructuring of undergraduate curricula. Funding would be up to $20,000 for one large project or $10,000 for two smaller projects. Preference was given to proposals which engaged students in large lecture courses, work with diverse learners, create opportunities for undergraduate research, and assess program learning objectives.

Join us in congratulating Prof. Wang and team in their amazing accomplishment!