Holistic Summer Undergraduate Research Program in High Performance Computing Research
TimeTuesday, July 3012pm - 12:30pm
DescriptionThis study investigated the effectiveness of a National Science Foundation-sponsored Research Experience for Undergraduates Site in High Performance Computing (HPC) at South Dakota State University. In the 2018 program, ten first- and second-year students majoring in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines were engaged in an intensive ten-week program on the use and application of HPC in theoretical and applied research. The participants were engaged in an interdisciplinary program and were mentored by faculty and graduate students as they completed their project. Participants were provided instruction on the use of HPC, preparing posters and presentations, the Responsible Conduct of Research, and a variety of interpersonal skills. Feedback on the program was evaluated with daily journal entries prepared by the participants, Computer & Information Science & Engineering (CISE) pre- and post-survey responses, one-on-one interviews, and the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking. Results of the 2018 cohort indicate that participants’ attitudes toward their project discipline (e.g., engineering or biological sciences) are favorable. Participants’ self-reported Research Skills also increased from the beginning to the end of the program. However, results suggest that their favorable attitudes decreased from the beginning to the end of the program. One hypothesis of why this occurred is that participants had unrealistic ideas about the time, effort, or duties of high-level research in math, engineering, and/or biological science disciplines. After the ten-week program, participants’ views were more closely aligned with the reality of research work in the area.