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New USF professor receives WIDER grant

TAMPA, Fla. -- New University of South Florida researcher Luanna Prevost recently received a National Science Foundation Widening Implementation & Demonstration of Evidence-Based Reforms (WIDER) grant for $55,000 to study how linguistic software can be used to help faculty assess and improve student learning in biology courses.

"The purpose of the grant is to understand how faculty can use written assessments to support reformed teaching practices, particularly in large enrollment course," Prevost said. "The study uses automated analysis of constructed response assessments to uncover student misconceptions about biology concepts and provide feedback that faculty can use address these challenges.

USF is one of five collaborating institutions in the national network of faculty using these assessments.

The WIDER grant program is focused on transforming higher education institutions into supportive environments for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) faculty members. Its goal is to substantially increase use of evidence-based teaching and learning practices by employing effective instructional materials and methods.

Prevost, who joined USF this year, is assistant professor in the Department of Integrative Biology. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Georgia and conducted postdoctoral research at Michigan State University with the Automated Analysis of Constructed Response research group. Prevost's research interests focus on the assessment of student learning using automated text analysis of student writing, problem solving in biology, and teaching professional development.


Filed under:Integrative Biology Arts and Sciences    
Author:Katie Vasenina