June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
23.350.1 - 23.350.9
Creating Undergraduate Applied Research Opportunities for Engineering Technology Students in Healthcare RoboticsAccording to the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), undergraduate research is aninquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an originalintellectual or creative contribution. If there is a consensus that all undergraduate education canbe enhanced by research opportunities, then it is especially so for engineering technology (ET)majors whose programs are designed to balance theory with practice. While experts agree thatundergraduate research should be incorporated into the curriculum because it enhances studentengagement, recruitment and retention, there is a difference of opinion as to whether anundergraduate research (UR) project should be conceived by student-faculty interest with somereal-world application in mind, or be driven by a real-world need from the start. (Berri et. al.2012). The need to fund UR projects in some way – to obtain necessary equipment, buy outfaculty time, and support undergraduates who participate -- makes real-world drivers particularlycompelling.This paper details how collaborative efforts with entrepreneurs can be made to catalyze researchwhile making it possible to seek external funding from government and non-government entities.As a case in point, the paper will document the early stage of an exciting project that is designedto inexpensively enhance eldercare, the demand for which is skyrocketing in today’s agingsociety, using robotic platforms. This project addresses a real-world need while providingstudents the opportunity to make an “original intellectual or creative contribution,” having all theelements that that drive quality research and attract faculty, student, and entrepreneurial interestalike. It is motivated by the need to control home healthcare costs, improve the quality of life foran aging population and their caregivers, allow patients to be more involved in their own care,help prevent premature hospitalization or long stays in assisted living facilities, and provide anavenue for social engagement through a conversational interface using socially assistive robots(SAR). It expounds on efforts to create a research infrastructure through research andcollaborative grant writing.
Khan, S., & Gatton, L. J., & Gatton, B. (2013, June), Creating Undergraduate Applied Research Opportunities for Engineering Technology Students in Healthcare Robotics Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19364
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