AddRan Festival recognizes undergraduate research

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    Sophomore Lindsey Lubrano said she and a group of students worked on a research project in which they surveyed 100 students about their perception of computer hackers.

    Lubrano, a criminal justice major, said she and her group asked students questions such as how dangerous they thought computer hackers were and if the government should do things to prevent hacking.

    Lubrano and many other AddRan students will present their research on April 16 at the Brown-Lupton University Union during the Festival of Undergraduate Scholarship and Creativity.

    Keith Whitworth, sociology instructor and co-chair of AddRan College’s undergraduate research festival, said undergraduate research is an integral part of the university. He said it is important to both students and the AddRan College.

    “Undergraduate research provides students the opportunity to explore new ideas and to be able to demonstrate these ideas orally or through some kind of poster,” Whitworth said.

    Conducting undergraduate research enabled students to participate in a new level of scholarship they would normally not get in classroom lectures or group discussions, Whitworth said.

    Lubrano said during her research she learned skills such as how to create a survey, get statistics based off the survey and analyze those statistics.

    Senior Evan Landrum conducted a research project last semester in which he determined what places between Fort Worth and the Texas Motor Speedway would be most feasible for developed train stations complete with retail, shopping, restaurants and bars.

    Landrum, a geography major, said he will present his research at the Association of American Geographers poster session on April 16 in Washington, D.C.

    He will also be meeting with a Fort Worth city planner in two weeks to present him with a copy of his research and discuss the findings, Landrum said.

    “The fact that city planners may one day use our research as a reference for where to place light rail stations is definitely a motivating factor,” Landrum wrote in an e-mail. “It’s always nice to know that the research you are doing is relevant.”

    Andrew Schoolmaster, dean of AddRan College, was Landrum’s professor in an applied geography class. Schoolmaster said he assigned a project to Landrum during the class because research gives a new approach to problem-solving that can be applied in classes and jobs.

    The idea of being able to identify a problem, conceptualize an approach of how to solve it, collect and analyze the necessary data and draw conclusions based upon analysis is the process of problem-solving and something Schoolmaster said he believes all undergraduate students should learn through research before they graduate.

    Landrum developed skills such as working independently while he worked on his research project, Schoolmaster said.

    “I think that over the course of the semester he became more aware of what research really is,” Schoolmaster said. “That it is hard work. That it is multidimensional, and that it can be very rewarding.”

    Landrum said his research project may soon help him get into a graduate school. He took his research project with him to University of North Carolina Charlotte. While he was there, he was able to talk to graduate professors in depth about a subject he was knowledgeable about because of the time and research he put into his project.

    “I can’t stress enough how beneficial it has been to me,” Landrum said.

    Landrum said doing research is beneficial for undergraduate students because it takes students outside the classroom and gives them a chance to apply the skills they have learned throughout their time as a student. Because of the research project, Landrum said he believed he learned a lot in Schoolmaster’s applied geography class.

    Some skills Landrum learned is how to create a literature review, writing skills, time management and how to do field work.

    Whitworth said that learning skills is something many students get from conducting undergraduate research. Some of the skills that are common is learning how to create literature reviews, survey design, interviewing techniques and presentation skills.

    Whitworth said students would be able to show off their skills at the fifth annual undergraduate research festival April 16. About 100 students will present their research projects, he said.

    Michael Butler, associate dean of AddRan College, said the AddRan Festival of Undergraduate Scholarship and Creativity is for students who have either a major or minor that is part of AddRan College. Other schools and colleges are also conducting research festivals taking place this week, such as the John V. Roach Honors College, he said.


    AddRan Festival of Undergraduate Scholarship and Creativity

    When: Friday, April 16

    Where: BLUU Ballroom

    For more information visit www.addranfestival.com

    Schedule:

    1-1:05 p.m. Welcome from Dean Andrew Schoolmaster

    1:10-2:30 p.m. First Set of Oral Presentations

    2:40-3:50 p.m. Poster and Video Presentations/Second Set of Oral Presentations/Festival Refreshments

    4-5:20 p.m. Third Set of Oral Presentations

    5:30-5:50 p.m. Announcement of Prizes and Farewell