University of Michigan

To launch nationally the Distributed Teaching Collaborative (DTC), which seeks to revolutionize MSI-to-R1 graduate pathways in robotics

  • Amount $499,978
  • City Ann Arbor, MI
  • Investigator Odest Jenkins
  • Year 2022
  • Program Higher Education
  • Sub-program

This grant supports the launch of the University of Michigan’s Distributed Teaching Collaborative (DTC), a cross-institutional partnership that aims to address issues of underrepresentation in the study of robotics. Led by computer scientist Odest Chadwick "Chad" Jenkins, the University of Michigan is partnering with faculty at Morehouse College and Howard University (both Historically Black Colleges and Universities) and Berea University (the first integrated co-ed college in the South) to increase the quality and breadth of robotics education available to undergraduates at these institutions. The DTC involves several activities, including developing and sharing undergraduate robotics curricula across the partner institutions, enabling student access to cutting-edge courses that would otherwise be unavailable to them; co-teaching courses in order to provide students opportunities to engage with leading robotics scholars at UMichigan; and providing UMichigan-sponsored grading and office hours, in order to lessen the burden on partner faculty that may be facing high-teaching loads. The result will be a significant expansion in the partner institutions’ ability to provide quality instruction in robotics, and prepare interested students for potential graduate study in robotics at UMichigan or elsewhere.Course materials will be open source and the collaboration will develop best practices that other institutions can use to establish similar programs in robotics education and which have the potential to evolve into a standardized training and credentialing program to prepare students for graduate school.

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