Using Peer Instruction to Develop Computational Thinking Practices: An Advanced Placement Computer Science (CS) Principles Pilot

Beth Simon
Computational thinking practices are critical to enable next-generation advances in all STEM disciplines. Yet, while STEM disciplines ubiquitously require core competencies, almost none do so in computing. The NSF Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate supported the College Board in the development of a new Advanced Placement course appropriate for all STEM students: CS Principles.

Exploring Computer Science: An Inquiry-Based High School Computer Science Curriculum Committed to Equity and Rigorous Learning for All Students

Jane Margolis
Exploring Computer Science (ECS) is a computer science (CS) curriculum designed in response to research findings about the severe limitations of Advanced Placement CS in engaging more than a narrow band of students. ECS is a year-long college-preparatory course, consisting of six units, including problem-solving, Web design, introduction to programming, robotics and data analysis.

Development of a Common Platform for Unifying Humanoids Research

Youngmoo Kim
Building upon previous collaborative work with small humanoid robots, this project is embarking on an ambitious new research project involving multiple adult-sized humanoids. There is an overwhelming disparity in terms of resources devoted to humanoids research in the United States versus research in other countries that have heavily invested in this area of robotics. The goal of this ambitious five-year project is to rapidly advance U.S. humanoid research by developing a common open platform.

CAREER: Exploring Creative Expression Through Music and Audio Technology

Youngmoo Kim
Music contributes substantially to every culture on Earth, and the enjoyment of music is universal. Historically, the primary exposure to music has been through live performance, providing audiences an opportunity for interaction with the musicians and music, but today the vast majority of music is experienced through recordings.

The Greater Philadelphia SeaPerch program

Joanne Ferroni / Amy Campbell
The Greater Philadelphia SeaPerch program focuses on increasing the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) pipeline through an innovative underwater robotics program for middle and high school students. Students learn about STEM disciplines, with a focus on naval engineering, by building an underwater ROV (remotely operated vehicle) called the SeaPerch. The culminating event is the Greater Philadelphia SeaPerch Challenge, jointly hosted by The American Society of Naval Engineers Delaware Valley Chapter, Drexel University, and NAVSEES Philadelphia.

SimCalc Project

Seth Meyers

SimCalc has pursued a mission of “democratizing access to the mathematics of change and variation”, which translates to introducing students in grades 6–12 to the powerful ideas underlying calculus while simultaneously enriching the mathematics already covered at those grade levels.

SpelBots: African American Women Showcasing Robotics and Computer Science to Underrepresented K–12 Students Nationally

Andrew Williams
SpelBots are a team of female, African American students who conduct robotics research, compete in worldwide robotics and computer science competitions, and conduct K–12 outreach. The long-range vision of this project is to leverage the SpelBots activities to provide career role models in cutting-edge computer science and robotics from underrepresented communities.

Humanoids: Training Students for International Collaborations

Paul Oh
This PIRE project is a collaborative project that engages each member’s unique resources, including electro-mechanical design (Korean collaborators), virtual HUBO (Bryn Mawr), online HUBO and co-op program (Drexel), mini-HUBO (Virginia Tech), advanced locomotion (UPenn) and human-robot interaction (Swarthmore). Humanoids are bipedal robots engineered to mimic human locomotion, balance, and coordination.

Museum/School Partnerships: Bridging Home, School, and Community Through Science Learning

Dale McCreedy


The Franklin Institute is committed to engaging teachers, students, and families in science learning. Parent Partners in School Science (PPSS) was developed by The Franklin Institute, in partnership with the School District of Philadelphia, as a science education and parent involvement program, with the goal of connecting a child’s home and school life through science learning. Through events and take-home activities, adults and children think about their everyday lives like scientists—questioning, observing, testing, and experimenting with the world around them.

Improving Student Achievement Through Mathematics Specialists

William Haver
The NSF-funded MSP institute is a project that supports outstanding middle school teachers in their quest to become mathematics specialists. Each teacher participates in coursework that leads to a master’s degree and certification as a mathematics specialist. Following the certification, each of the participants will serve as a specialist within their home school districts, coaching other teachers.