COE hosts annual research retreat

Retreat attendees enjoy the BYOD showcase demonstrating technology capabilities in COE room 3165 lab.

The College of Education’s Research Committee hosted its annual research retreat on April 21.

Faculty and staff from the College received information about large data sets from keynote speaker Jeremy Zelkowski, Ph.D., participated in a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) showcase and learned from faculty members in the College about unique technologies that can be used for research.

Zelkowski is an associate professor and program director of secondary mathematics education at the University of Alabama. Detailing how he utilized large data sets for his doctoral and current research, Zelkowski explained the benefits and considerations of utilizing this form of data.

For his research, Zelkowski was interested in the impact of students having taken a math course their senior year of high school when taking college mathematics courses.

Keynote speaker Jeremy Zelkowski, Ph.D. discusses large data sets.

“When kids were failing my college algebra or business calculus class, crying sometimes, I would ask about their preparation for college,” said Zelkowski. “I was shocked to find that many kids said they didn’t take math their senior year, and many kids said they were told not to take precalculus, calculus, etc.”

To conduct his research, Zelkowski needed high school data, which he was able to access via federal data sets.

“Software does the work, you just need to interpret the output and understand the setup of the data,” he said.

Zelkowski explained that most researchers have not taken advantage of these federal databases because of the sheer size of the data sets and the quantitative methods that need to be considered.

“This is an untapped resource that can open up grant opportunities, but more importantly, test policy,” he said.

Zelkowski also reviewed potential funding opportunities and answered questions from the attendees about relative weights of data and how to determine what data must be absolved.

For the remainder of the research retreat, participants were educated about the capabilities of technology located in COE room 3165 for the Bring Your Own Device showcase hosted by Georgia Southern Academic Technology Support Manager, Todd Tinker, and COE Professor Elizabeth Downs, Ph.D. Afterwards, faculty members Antonio Gutierrez de Blume, Ph.D.;  Jonathan Hilpert, Ph.D.; and Pamela Wells, Ph.D. informally shared with the audience tips on how they use technology in their research.

Members of the 2016-2017 COE Research Committee include Mete Akcaoglu, Ph.D.; Katie Brkich, Ph.D.; Antonio Gutierrez de Blume, Ph.D.; Brandon Hunt, Ph.D.; Alisa Leckie, Ph.D.; and Alma Stevenson, Ph.D. Ex-officio members include Alejandro Gallard, Ph.D.; Tracy Linderholm, Ph.D.; and Robert Mayes, Ph.D.

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