News from WCER

UW-Madison researcher collaborates on new NSF-funded national artificial intelligence initiative

September 14, 2020   |   By Lynn Armitage, WCER Communications

Sadhana Puntambekar, a principal investigator at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research and professor in the University of Wisconsin─Madison School of Education, will collaborate with national researchers on establishing one of five artificial intelligence (AI) institutes and education hubs. A $100 million initiative of the National Science Foundation, the centers are the single most significant federal investment to date in exploring how AI can benefit the United States’ quality of life, economy and international competitiveness.


UW Researchers Partner with Madison School District to Sharpen 4K Teaching

August 21, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

The project, funded by a $400,000 federal grant, culminated with the delivery of research-based professional development sessions to 20 Madison 4K teachers on four Saturdays last school year.


Supporting Black Interns through Racial Trauma: a Step-by-Step Guide for Colleges, Employers

July 30, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

As all aspects of American society face a national reckoning on racism and police brutality, new UW−Madison research is providing a playbook that employers and higher education professionals can use to help Black student interns cope with vicarious racial trauma amid the continuing public protests against anti-Black violence.


Can Quantitative Ethnography Help Tell the COVID-19 Story?

June 16, 2020   |   By Lynn Armitage, WCER Communications

The quest for answers to how COVID-19 is affecting different cultures is why the newly formed International Society for Quantitative Ethnography (QE) launched the “QE COVID Data Challenge,” a seven-day data sprint involving nearly 100 data and research experts collaborating remotely from 16 countries, including Denmark, Hungary, Australia, South Africa and Sri Lanka.


New Resources for Families Help Multilingual Learners with Disabilities Thrive in Virtual Classrooms

June 15, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

Designed to cushion the shift to distance learning, new resources from WIDA include tools and tips around social stories, adaptive devices and understanding Individualized Education Programs to ensure multilingual students with disabilities still receive all the language and other services they’re due under federal law.


WCER Researchers Studying Surge of Online Internships during COVID-19

May 29, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

CCWT Director Matthew Hora will work with Zi Chen on a six-month analysis focused on ‘micro-internships,’ with a second angle examining whether companies in STEM fields are shifting their internships online, to help measure student academic and career impacts of web-based internships amid a COVID19-driven surge in their use.


Six Universities Join Renowned Network to Improve Research & Teaching Skills of Future STEM Faculty

May 28, 2020   |   By Lynn Armitage, WCER Communications

A new cohort of universities in the U.S. and Canada will be welcomed this fall into the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL), an international network of 35 research universities dedicated to delivering more effective undergraduate STEM learning by ensuring that today’s STEM graduate students the science, technology, engineering and math faculty of the future―are skilled in both teaching and research.


UW–Madison’s Hidden Village Computer Game Selected for Sixth Annual Virtual STEM Video Showcase

May 10, 2020   |   By Janet L. Kelly

A video about a UW–Madison online learning game – titled “The Hidden Village: Mathematical Reasoning Through Movement” – is among 170 videos featuring science, technology, engineering and math education initiatives selected to compete in the 2020 STEM for All Video Showcase. The public can view the videos at any time and through May 12 they can communicate online with presenters and vote for their favorites at https://stemforall2020.videohall.com .


‘Beats Empire’ Simulation Game Moves Hip-Hop from Fiction to Online Learning Tool for Middle School

April 23, 2020   |   By Janet L. Kelly, WCER Communications

“Beats Empire,” released to the public this week, is designed for use in middle school classrooms and at home. Built upon education research, the game is recommended for players from middle school through adults. It was developed with National Science Foundation funding as a project among research universities, private sector partners and the New York City Department of Education. With its name inspired by the hip-hop drama series “Empire,” the Jay-Z song and New York City vibe, university researchers from Columbia, UW–Madison and Georgia Tech worked together to create the game, which places players in the roles of music producers who leverage data and analyze trends to dominate the music industry.


CareerLocker: Helping Adults & Children With Career-Planning and Learning During COVID-19

April 10, 2020   |   By Lynn Armitage, WCER Communications

As the world is sheltering safely at home from COVID-19, everyone has more time to look ahead and think about their future―including children, who can explore the age-old question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Parents now can help their kids answer that and other questions right from home, and get career help themselves, with a self-paced, online career-information system called CareerLocker.


COVID-19 and Social Distancing Do Not Need to End College Internships

April 7, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

Careful redesign of traditional face-to-face internships can ensure web-based alternatives that are meaningful for students and recent graduates seeking real-world work experience or a bridge to a permanent job during the health crisis.


New At-Home Language Activity Booklet for Young Children Available Online

April 1, 2020   |   By Janet L. Kelly

WIDA Early Years is making a new booklet, “Learning Language Every Day: Activities for Families,” available free online in English and Español to help children keep learning at home during the COVID-19 outbreak. The booklet can be downloaded for printing and sharing.


New Fulbright Scholar Bob Mathieu Heads to Chile in 2021

March 27, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

Bob Mathieu, director of CIRTL at WCER and the Albert A. Whitford Professor of Astronomy at UW-Madison, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award that focuses on his two academic passions—advancing STEM education and studying binary stars—and a goal to grow personally by living abroad for the first time. He hopes to gain more of an international perspective by living life in Chile for three month next year between February and May.


EdNeuroLab Zeroes in on Math Learning

March 26, 2020   |   By Lynn Armitage, WCER Communications

In 2012, Edward Hubbard, an assistant professor in UW‒Madison’s Department of Educational Psychology, created the Educational Neuroscience Lab to understand—through functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)—how the physical changes that occur in children’s brains as they learn may help improve education practices.


Education on the Home Front: How to Keep Young Children Learning in the Early Days of COVID-19

March 20, 2020   |   By Janet L. Kelly, WCER Communications

For families with young children, UW–Madison educator, doctoral alum and family engagement researcher Lorena Mancilla has some advice on how to create spaces and establish routines for learning and working effectively from home.