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Delta State University recipient of a $2 million funding grant from the U.S. Department of Education Title III program

By October 8, 2008General

Delta State’s Title III Grant Committee members include: (seated, front row, from left) Collier Parker, Dean, College of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Art;  Dr. John Tiftickjian, Professor of Biology; Dr. Barry Campbell,  Chair Division of Biological and Physical Sciences and Associate Professor of Biology; Dr. Chuck Smithhart, Assistant Professor of Chemistry; (seated back row, from left) Dr. Ellen Green, Assistant Professor of Biology; Dr. Malcolm McEwen, Director of The Center for Science and Environmental Education and Professor of Science Education;(standing, from left)  Dr. Myrtis Tabb, Associate Vice President of Finance and Administration; Jeff Slagell, Director of Library Services and Assistant Professor of Library Services; Dr. Beverly Moon, Associate Dean for Assessment & Planning and Associate Professor of English; Beverly Fratesi, Director, Office of Information Technology; Dr. Alina Gabryszewska-Kukawa, Assistant Professor of Physics and Director of Wiley Planetarium.


Delta State University’s Division of Biological and Physical Sciences is the recipient of a grant from the U. S. Department of Education Title III program.  The award, a first in Title III funds for Delta State, provides $2 million in funding over the next five years. 

To address barriers to student success in science education, the funds will be directed towards extensive course redesign, faculty development, and equipment.  “It’s a tremendous boost for each and every program in the sciences,” says Dr. Barry Campbell, Chair of the Division. “It’s the type of funding that benefits all students coming to Delta State since it impacts the delivery of science instruction to majors and non-majors alike.”

Delta State’s successful Title III proposal, “Increasing Student Success and Retention through the Transformation of Laboratory Science Instruction,” involves multiple strategies that are intended to significantly and positively impact students’ academic outcomes and thereby their success at the university.
The primary strategies of the proposal include: (1) redesign of 12 high-enrollment laboratory science courses to include best practices in science education, effective use of educational technology, and applied use of instrumentation; (2) intensive faculty development in best practices in incorporating educational technology into the curriculum and in discipline-specific best practices; (3) equipping 10 biology laboratory/classrooms, 4 chemistry laboratory/classrooms, 1 shared science computer lab and 1 physics lab/planetarium with current educational technology tools (smart classroom packages); and (4) replacing obsolete instrumentation in 20 science classrooms/laboratories with current instrumentation with digital interfaces and data collection capabilities.
A concerted effort by various groups at the university, in partnership with SunGard Higher Education, resulted in the successful application. Many faculty and staff were involved in the grant application and are committed to the multiple strategies that will improve science instruction.
Those faculty and staff include Barry Campbell, Beverly Fratesi, Alina Gabryszewska-Kukawa, Ellen Green, Ann Lotven, Malcolm McEwen, Beverly Moon, Collier Parker, Jeff Slagell, Chuck Smithhart, Kay Stricklin (former grants director), Myrtis Tabb, and John Tiftickjian, Program Director.