Team Research Project

2011-2012 i3 Cohort

Students work on this project in teams of five or six members. Each team selected a current societal problem. Through extensive research, teams identify and make a case for an information-related solution to their chosen problem. Teams will present their research and proposed solution during the two-week Concluding Institute, held the following June. Each team is supported by a Team Research Advisor and the i3 Staff/Faculty. Each project consists of a Proposal, Research Paper, Research Poster & Presentation, and an optional creative deliverable, such as a video or interactive component.

i3 Scholars working on Research Project

Research Abstracts

The Great Digital Divide in America: Narrowing racial disparity within the informational sciences

Team Solutions (abstracted from Team Solutions' Research Proposal)

As members of the black community, the lack of African-American and Hispanic students within the information science field is of great importance to Team Solutions. This is because we understand that to participate in a globalized world, one must have access to and possess knowledge of the technology that runs it. With the automation of modern society and without knowledge of these technologies, those within the black and Latino communities cannot adequately partake in day-to-day living. The causes behind the shortage of blacks and Latinos in the information science field must be addressed if the democratic principles that America prides itself on having are to be upheld. The inability to operate in a technological world will further the gap between the haves and the have-nots.

Are Looks Everything?: Exploring the potential trade-offs between aesthetic design and usability in mobile applications

The American Raccoons (abstracted from Team American Raccoons' Research Proposal)

In the context of the recent overwhelming move toward mobile technologies such as smart phones, there exists a potential trade-off between the aesthetic design and the usability of any particular application (app). Through our research, we wish to explore the importance that users place on aesthetic design as compared to usability. We will design a study using a random sample of students and community members at various colleges/cities. We hypothesize that users value aesthetic design more than usability, and will compromise some usability for a small amount of aesthetic design in an app.

Media Literacy and Technology in Education: Improving media literacy in underprivileged schools through the increased use of technology

Team Too Cool for Names (abstracted from Team Too Cool for Names' Research Proposal)

In an increasingly information driven society, technology is offering quicker and more efficient access to available resources. However, those who cannot afford or those who are incapable of quick adaptation of these information technologies, face tremendous disadvantages in many aspects of society at a growing rate. In contrast, those who have technological access are more likely to benefit from advantages in both the economic and social sectors. Through preliminary research, we have observed that students, particularly those in underprivileged areas, are lacking the technological skills necessary to succeed in today's digital age. We plan to investigate early childhood education, children's media literacy, funding and initiatives that provide technology in the classroom, and finally how some schools have successfully integrated technology into the classroom.

Undergraduate Student Financial Managers: Improving college students' ability to manage their debt and money

Team Six Sigma (abstracted from Team Six Sigma's research proposal)

The average credit card balance for undergraduate students was $3,173.00 in 2010 according to a research study by Sallie Mae. Similarly, students are borrowing more for their college education, an average of $23,000.00 for their bachelor's degree. Regardless of the rising cost of higher education students are staying in school longer, turning four year degrees into five or six year degrees. A pool by Twentysomthing, Inc. also found that 85% of college seniors in 2010 were planning on returning home after graduation. We will focus on undergraduate students' financial management; specifically, students' day-to-day expenses and how they budget and track their money. ... By learning more about the available resources and why college students are still having problems managing their finances, our group hopes to develop tools that target college students by focusing on their specific financial and budgeting needs.