posted March 15, 2004

Hope Presentations at Comp Sci Conference

Members of the Hope College computer science faculty and students made presentations at the annual conference of the Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group in Computer Science Education (SIGCSE), held in Norfolk, Va., on Wednesday-Sunday, March 3-7.

The presenters included three students and two members of the faculty. The students, all juniors, were Dan Hansens of Midland, Christopher Johnson of White Lake and Pamela VanDort of Midland. The faculty members were Dr. Matt DeJongh and Dr. Ryan McFall, each an assistant professor of computer science.

Hansens, Johnson and VanDort competed in the student research competition.

Hansens and Johnson presented a poster on their work on "The Mighty eTextReader." Their research took place during the summer of 2003 and is part of a National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded project titled "Student and Instructor Centered Electronic Textbooks in the Computer Science Curriculum," which is directed by McFall.

VanDort presented her poster "Functional Modeling of Genes and Cellular Processes for Gene Expression Data Analysis" along with Benjamin Ramsay, a student from Taylor University. Ramsay worked with VanDort as a participant in the department of computer science's Research Experience for Undergraduates program. Their work was supervised by DeJongh.

DeJongh was the organizer and moderator of a panel discussion titled "Bioinformatics in the Undergraduate Curriculum: Opportunities for Computer Science Educators." The panel included faculty representatives from Canisius College, Wright State University and Wheaton College. He also presented laboratory materials for an introductory course in bioinformatics at a Special Projects session. The materials were developed during the summer of 2003 as part of a SIGCSE-funded project titled "Bioinformatics in the Computer Science Curriculum."

McFall presented a poster during the NSF Course, Curriculum and Laboratory Improvement (CCLI) showcase. The showcase is organized by the NSF, inviting presentations on about 20 of the most interesting projects representing different NSF DUE CCLI initiatives and computer science interest areas. McFall presented preliminary results of his ongoing study on the effectiveness of using electronic textbooks to improve student learning.