2023 SPIRE-EIT REU recap

Summer Program for Interdisciplinary Research and Education – Emerging Interface Technologies

Funded by NSF Award Number (FAIN): 2244586

SPIRE-EIT (Summer Program for Interdisciplinary Research and Education – Emerging Interface Technologies) at Iowa State University is a 10-week interdisciplinary summer experience for 10 undergraduates that integrates research and education in emerging interface technologies. Since the site’s inception in 2006, students’ commitment to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields has been demonstrated, as well as producing research publications. Students are provided with classroom training and gain hands-on experience using cutting-edge instruments, equipment, computers and cyberinfrastructure. Classes in computer programming and graphics, interface design, human-computer interaction, research skills, team skills, and ethics occupy approximately one third of the students’ time. In an unusual structure that is focused on building a community of practice, students conduct interdisciplinary research projects in groups of two or three, with all students co-located in Iowa State’s Virtual Reality Applications Center (VRAC). Each group interacts with VRAC graduate students under the supervision of VRAC faculty. The research projects are presented at an end-of-the summer campus-wide research symposium in the form of posters, demos, and a five-page research paper. Frequently the students present their research at research conferences later during the school year.

2023 recap

Research Projects

3D Game for First-Gen Students

Project: On a Journey to College: An Interactive Web-Based 3D Game Prototype for First-Generation College Students
Faculty mentors: Kimberly Zarecor, Evrim Baran
Graduate mentors: Jorge Yass, Hila Sabouni, Ezequiel Aleman
REU interns: Andric Brena, Curtis Johnson, Kristi Skinner

Project description (.pdf)
Poster (.pdf)
Video summary (YouTube)

Virtual Research Community (VRComm)

Project: Virtual Research Community 
Faculty mentor: Michael Dorneich
Graduate mentor: April Tan
REU interns: Allison Arnold, Nadya Konadu, Ayman-Yereem Kone

Project description (.pdf)
Poster (.pdf)
Video summary (YouTube)

3D Biometric Scanning

Project: 3D biometrics scanning
Faculty mentor: Beiwen Li
Graduate mentor: Micah Mundy
REU interns: Amy Gilhoi, Rebekah Young, Tim Yu

Project description (.pdf)
Poster (.pdf)
Video summary (YouTube)