Tabitha Peck – NSF CAREER Award

Professor Tabitha Peck

The Office of Grants and Contracts congratulates Assistant Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science, Tabitha Peck, on a National Science Foundation CAREER award (1942146).

The $549,997 grant will support the project titled “Virtual Body Ownership Illusions for Bias Reduction and Fostering Inclusivity in STEM Classrooms.”  The goal of this 5-year project is to create an environment where STEM education is available for all students and that no student has to face prohibitive barriers to major in a STEM discipline.

One of the outcomes of the project will be a publicly accessible open-source VR application that can be inexpensively deployed on commercially available VR hardware with curriculum guidelines for distribution across the world. The research will involve collaborations with UNC Charlotte and Alamance Community College and will fund the participation of 15 undergraduate research students from Davidson who will develop VR applications, run experiments, write research papers, attend international research conferences, and present research findings.

Additionally, Professor Peck has assembled a robust advisory board consisting of Dr. Robert Bodenheimer of Vanderbilt University, Dr. Benjamin Lok of the University of Florida, and Drs. Jess Good, Barbara Lom, Fuji Lozada and Kristi Multhaup of Davidson College.

The CAREER is NSF’s most prestigious research award, with the vast majority of awardees being at large research-intensive universities.  Professor Peck’s accomplishment is especially notable since it follows her successful collaboration with North Carolina State University on the 2018 NSF grant (1760831) “Pre-service Educators Reimagining Core Experiences in Physics Teaching,” featured here.

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