Undergraduate Research Fellowship

Undergraduate Research Fellowship

Next deadline - November 24, 2021

The Berkeley Center for New Media is pleased to announce two undergraduate research fellowships are open for application for Spring 2022! Selected students will have the opportunity to work closely with new media graduate students on dissertation-level research. Each fellowship comes with a stipend of $1,000.

If you are interested in multiple projects, please submit separate applications for each project.

Applications are now open. Applications are due on November 1, 2022. Apply here.

Projects for Undergraduate Research Assistance 2023

Insight XR

InsightXR is an AR application that allows inclusive participation of users regardless of their location or time zones, while exploring generative design as a method. InsightXR enables expert and non-expert users to visualize 3D designs and guide the optimization process using AR technology. Our spring 2022 research will be focused on the backend development of InsightXR.

InsightXR is currently designed in Unity, and the evolutionary algorithms behind its generative design are written in Python. In spring 2023, the fellow will work on setting up Amazon Sagemaker as a server to run and test the python scripts. The requirements: Experience using AWS Advanced in Python

Hybrid Learning Environments (closed)

This research grows out of an existing partnership between the East Bay Collaborative for Underserved Children (ECUC) and the UC Berkeley School of Education. Through this partnership, K-8 students at schools in Oakland are provided access to technology, mentorship, academic assistance, and enrichment activities with the support of undergraduate mentors who are enrolled in the course ED140. As a result of the pandemic, hybrid opportunities for tutoring and mentorship have emerged in the form of before-school support in which undergraduates form bonds with young students, provide academic support in the classroom during the school day, and offer 1:1 tutoring during afterschool programs, all via Zoom. This work aims to explore how such remote and hybrid configurations can be leveraged to foster equitable learning and poses questions such as: a) How do young students and their undergraduate mentors engage and participate in videoconferencing environments? b) What practices are leveraged by students and their mentors to foster social presence, build community, and promote academic growth? c) What systems and supports need to be in place for young students, undergraduate mentors, and teachers in order to successfully implement hybrid learning environments? We suspect an investigation into the reimagining of these collaborative relationships has the potential to transform practice and work to disrupt the reproduction of educational inequality deepened by the COVID-19 crisis.

Prior to data collection, this fellow would survey and synthesize the current literature on social presence within the field of educational research and best practices in synchronous online instruction. The undergraduate researcher would also provide support to the ECUC team coordinating volunteer sign-ups and obtaining consent for the research project. During the data collection phase, the undergraduate researcher would help develop the interview protocol for the undergraduate mentors and conduct interviews with current ED140 students about their experiences working with K-8 students in hybrid environments. This student would also use qualitative data analysis software and techniques to create codes and develop inter-rater reliability as we analyze the interviews. Not only would their help be invaluable to the project, it would provide opportunities for mentorship on developing a literature review, conducting data collection, and analyzing data as part of a research team.

Immersive Virtual Environments and Patient-Centered Design in the Pediatric Healthcare Built Environment (closed)

This project examines the pediatric healthcare space specifically the patient room and how to innovate patient participation and engagement in the design of the room based on their needs. It involves an understanding of multiple factors that influence the patient experience that include spatial and environmental design of the physical environment to accommodate operational and user-specific needs, that in turn adapt to the affordances of the space. This is ongoing research conducted at the XRLab and the focus in Spring 2023 will be on: 1. Data Analysis of an experimental study using virtual reality and biosensors. The data collection will be complete in Fall 2022. The data will include subjective data, survey response and biometrics such as eye tracking and emotion analytics. 2. Preparation for the next experimental design study using the same methodology.

The student will get hands-on experience on a mixed methods research project that involves emerging technology such as virtual reality and biosensors for participatory design in healthcare design. The undergraduate student researcher could focus on 1, 2 or both depending on their skills and interest 1. Data Analysis - required skills include RStudio and/or Python for the data analysis. The study design uses multiple methods and will involve data cleaning, manipulation and visualization. 2. Unity engine basic knowledge - C# coding for creating the experience in VR for interaction such as trigger, teleportation, and survey. The student could also assist the researcher during data collection of the experimental study. This would include undergoing CITI training for biomedical research.

4. Interest in data analysis/virtual reality/biometrics/psychology/working with children.
5. Knowledge in Unity will be great but not required or mandatory.

Previous Undergraduate Research Fellows and Projects

2022 funded candidates and projects here and here!

2021 funded candidates and projects here!

2020 funded candidates and projects here!

2019 funded candidates and projects here!

2018 funded candidates and projects here!

2017 funded candidates and projects here!