Grant Gives Students Hands-On Experience with Biotech Measurement
WHEELING, WV, Jan. 6, 2009 - Wheeling Jesuit University students stand to benefit greatly from a $14,485 grant awarded in December through the West Virginia Governor's office. Funded competitively through the state's Research Challenge Fund and the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, the grant is administered by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, Division of Science and Research.
The grant money is designed to advance scientific discovery at West Virginia's colleges and universities, according to the governor's office and to ensure “success in today's competitive, knowledge-driven economy.”
The Wheeling Jesuit grant will be used to purchase a BIOPAC MP Data Acquisition System that allows students to record and analyze physiological reactions, run pre-packaged psychophysiological experiments, serve as research equipment for independent student research, improve student learning experiences and better prepare them for jobs in the science field, according to psychology professor Dr. Bryan Raudenbush, the author of the grant application.
Raudenbush is also the director of undergraduate research at the university.
“We are thrilled to receive this nearly $15,000 EPSCOR grant and are looking forward to the benefit that our students and department will enjoy,” said Debra Hull, chair of the psychology department. “We are all indebted to Bryan for his generosity in writing, administering, and reporting on this and other grants.”
The new equipment allows for technical examinations of measures specific to physiological psychology, including the properties of skeletal muscles, varied brain activity while altering task demands, EEG recordings, EKG recordings, skin response and polygraph measures, eye fixation and tracking, reaction time, biofeedback, sleep wave analysis and exercise physiology.
Several hundred students stand to benefit from the BIOPAC technology this semester alone. Comprising one of the three largest majors on campus, the bachelor's in psychology degree program claims over 100 students and graduates 18-22 majors each year. Its coursework encompasses a major role of the core undergraduate curriculum, with approximately 700 students (over half of the university student body) taking at least one psychology course each year.
Psychology majors at the university are offered a thorough preparation for graduate study, as well as practical experience in various community agencies through internships and volunteer work, making them ready for their next step post graduation.
The Wheeling Jesuit award was one of six instrumentation grants awarded across the state. To learn more about scientific research in West Virginia or the state's Vision 2015 strategic plan for science and technology, visit www.wvresearch.org or call (304) 558-4128.
The youngest of 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States, Wheeling Jesuit University offers students a high-quality private education. Since 1995 U.S. News & World Report has ranked Wheeling Jesuit University among the top institutions in its “Best Master's Universities in the South” category. The campus is also home to the Robert C. Byrd National Technology Transfer Center, the Erma Ora Byrd Center for Educational Technologies®, the NASA-sponsored Classroom of the Future, a Challenger Learning Center® and the Clifford M. Lewis Appalachian Institute.
For complete information, please call 1 (800) 624-6992.