Dr. Xie awarded grant to develop eHealth tutorial

Ferguson, John  |  Oct 18, 2017

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Bo Xie
Bo Xie
Grants & Awards

For the second year in a row, Associate Professor Bo Xie has been awarded a grant from the NIH’s National Institute on Aging to improve older adults’ eHealth literacy.

The $425,208 grant will enable Dr. Xie to conduct a two-year project titled “Developing an eHealth Tutorial for Older Adults to Use Online Health Resources.”

The study aims to develop, refine, and pilot test an innovative intervention for improving older adults’ eHealth literacy, Dr. Xie said.

“Key to this intervention is an integrated eHealth tutorial featuring an instructional overlay added onto an actual health information website,” she said.

Development of the tutorial is enabled by an Online Tutorial Overlay Presenter (OnTOP), which Dr. Xie described as a novel computer program that builds on recent developments in visual recognition technology and enables the development of tutorials that can reduce the demand on learners’ cognitive abilities. For instance, an overlay could highlight important links or provide explanatory text on the screen itself.

Dr. Xie’s co-investigator is Tom Yeh, an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder. The project, which is scheduled to conclude in April 2019, expands on Dr. Xie’s previous work on older adults' learning and use of technology.

In spring 2017, she received a separate grant from the National Institute on Aging for a study titled “Boosting Older Adults’ Cognition by Training Real-World eHealth Skills.” In that project, Dr. Xie is developing a three-month curriculum that incorporates problem sets and activities to help older adults become more familiar with the Internet so they can make informed choices about health and medicine.

Dr. Gwizdka investigates eye-tracking for adaptive user interfaces

Ferguson, John  |  Jul 17, 2017

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Eye tracking
Jacek Gwizdka
Grants & Awards
Lockheed Martin
IX Lab
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Jacek Gwizdka
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Dr. Jacek Gwizdka

School of Information Assistant Professor Jacek Gwizdka, a co-director of the iSchool’s Information eXperience (IX) Lab, is a principal investigator on a new project called “Eye-Tracking for Adaptive User Interfaces.” The project is being funded by Lockheed Martin Corporation.

The main goal of this three-year project is to improve user-system performance in systems with complex displays. Eye-tracking and facial expression detection technologies will be used to sense user cognitive and affective mental states and adapt the display or adjust the training procedures. The objective of adaptation is to improve the user’s situation awareness, reduce mental workload, and proactively provide relevant information. Dr. Gwizdka will supervise a graduate student who will assist in designing and conducting experiments in the IX lab to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed approach. The resulting techniques should be applicable to environments with complex information, requiring sustained attention and tasks of long duration.

The iSchool’s Information eXperience Lab is a research facility dedicated to the study of human interaction with information across a wide range of digital formats and devices. The lab provides iSchool faculty, students, research collaborators and clients with a state-of-the-art facility in which to conduct research on broadly construed human-information interaction (HII) research topics, including effects of fundamental human capabilities on HII, evaluation of user interface and interaction design, usability, and all aspects of user experience.

Dr. Roy awarded $488K to help veterans become librarians

Ferguson, John  |  May 04, 2017

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a picture of loriene roy
Loriene Roy
Grants & Awards

Texas iSchool Professor Loriene Roy has received a Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to help U.S. veterans become librarians.

In partnership with San José State University and the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Dr. Roy will use the $488,501 IMLS grant to conduct a three-year project titled “Reaching Those Who Served: Recruiting and Preparing Military Veterans for Careers in Librarianship.”

The project aims to answer two research questions:

  • How do military veterans choose careers in librarianship and information studies?
  • What are effective strategies to recruit veterans into LIS graduate programs?

Jobs in the information fields share characteristics of a number of “hot jobs” for military veterans, Dr. Roy said. Such careers include IT specialist, math or science teacher and civilian public servant.

Based on the findings of their research, she and her partners will develop guidelines and strategies for recruiting veterans to library and information science master’s programs, among related initiatives. The project will also provide scholarships for 12 military veterans to attend LIS master’s programs.

“Reaching Those Who Served” was one of 14 projects selected from a field of 58 applications.

The project builds on Dr. Roy’s earlier work with organizations such as the Austin-based nonprofit group SongwritingWith:Soldiers. In 2014 she received a one-year, $50,000 grant from IMLS to plan for “Reaching Those Who Served.”

“We’re thrilled to be able to extend our understanding of how libraries work with military veterans,” Dr. Roy said. “This time we are admitting veterans into master’s programs and studying approaches to recruiting veterans into the information professions.”

For more information, contact Dr. Roy at loriene@ischool.utexas.edu.

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services through a 3-year (2017-2020) grant {RE-96-17-0018-17].


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