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Big Data X-Informatics MOOC: Research to increasing the efficicacy of this Massive Open Online Course
Ya' Shonti Bridgers(ECSU). Ifeanyi Onyenweaku (MVSU)

Online learning is an upcoming trend in the education world today. As there is a rise in technology, so do different institutions create online classes online using sites like Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), Coursera and so on.
Indiana University, school of Informatics and Computing, is one of the many schools that have chosen to get students enrolled in online classes. One of these classes is the Big Data X-informatics MOOC, which our research is based on. The main problem we are faced with that we are finding the best methods to eradicate is how to make online learning much more effective to the students.

Therefore, we are to invent ideas to create features that will improve interaction between the educational content and the user (students and professors). Firstly, surveys were made on other online educational sites like Coursera, Udemy, edX, Udacity, Duolingo, course builder, and Khan Academy. This was to observe features on these sites that enabled effective interaction with the different calibers of students and the sites, and features that did otherwise. Our findings enabled us to create new features or modify old features that enhance student-service interactivity. Furthermore, having gained knowledge from articles like "Design Principles for Visual Communication" Visual Communication," and "Peer Instruction in CS: Research and Experience," we are using AXURE to create the near perfect design / wireframes, with the observed features, that will interact effectively with the student; hence, catalyzing efficient learning.


The Recalculation of Elizabeth City State University Bay Area
Ya'Shonti Bridgers, Ryan Lawerence, Dr. Malcolm LeCompte(Mentor)

In 2011, an ECSU research team discovered a small ice shelf in Pine Island Bay, Antarctica had progressively receded until it disappeared completely in 2003. The ice shelf found to have disappeared is the furthest south of any similar such event known to have occurred since satellite monitoring of Earth South Pole began over 30 years ago. As a result of this discovery, the bay in which the ice shelf formerly resided has been named Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) Bay. This discovery was accomplished by undergraduate student using EXELIS ENVI Image processing software on archived Landsat imagery and a new, NASA-developed, Basal Stress Boundary.

The original calculations for the temporal progress of the ice shelf's area reduction were done during a summer undergraduate research program and reported in a paper accepted for publication by the International Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Journal of Selected Topics in Applied earth observations and Remote Sensing (JSTARS). Area estimates for each image were derived from multiple trials to obtain a first-order estimate of the decrease in area of the ice shelf. The effort was problematic due to inherent subjectivity of the methodology resulting in a larger than acceptable standard deviation. Up to 10% of the area estimate.

With publication of the paper pending it was deemed appropriate to improve the accuracy of the estimate of the original calculations. Higher accuracy was obtained by exploiting ENVI's ability to present a higher resolution image of the area being measured and by improving the visibility of the Basal Stress Boundary used as a boundary for the ice shelf. Common warped images were created and used by participants to create a uniform basis upon which the area estimates were made. The more accurate results, with their lower statistical variability were inserted into the JSTARS paper in its final review opportunity assumed to occur in early April.


Designed a curriculum for communicating parallel and distributed computing concepts to under served communities.
Ya' Shonti Bridgers, Jerome Mitchel(Mentor)

The emergence of multi-core and distributed computing has transformed mainstream application areas in industry and has demanded a rise for teaching parallelism and concurrency in computer science curriculum. However, minority serving institutions are at a disadvantage for offering courses in parallel and distributed computing because of the lack of resources and inability to teach those concepts. We argue for teaching these topics incrementally in computer science courses at underserved institutions, and propose a comprehensive approach involving flexible teaching modules with experiential programming exercises and other supplements, support materials for parallel computing resources, and development of an online community of educators and module contributors who support each other.


Survey to detect long-term variability in Pine Island Bay coastal Ice using archived Landsat Image
Undergraduate Research Experience in Ocean, Marine, and Polar Science
Elizabeth City State University
Antarctic Grounding Line Team
Michael Jefferson Jr, Ryan Lawerence, Glenn Koch and Ya'Shonti Bridgers
Dr. Malcolm LeCompte (Mentor)

In the 2003 Antarctic Surface Accumulation and Ice Discharge project, the Pine Island Bay Region was identified as an area to exhibit rapid changes potentially due to climate warming.

Utilizing the 2003 Antarctic Surface Accumulation and Ice Discharge basal stress boundary vector file, we surveyed the Pine Island Bay region from 100° West longitude to 112° West longitude to determine the accuracy of the grounding line and detect significant changes over multi-decadal time intervals.

Exelis Visualization Information Solutions' ENVI image processing software was used to co-register Landsat Muti-Spectral Scanner and Thematic Mapper images. Images prior to 2003 were co-registered with circa 2003 Landsat Ehanced Thematic Mapper used to created the 2003 Antarctic Surface Accumulation and Ice Discharge basal stress boundary. The survey yielded the possibility of one significant change in the placement of the basal stress boundary and instances of relatively minor basal stress boundary misplacement (or retreat) and evolutionary coastal ice retreat.


Temporal Reduction of the Ice Shelf in Pine Island Bay Antartica: 1972-2003
Grounding Line Validation Team
Ya' Shonti Bridgers, Jessica Brownlow, Kirsten Hawk
Dr. Malcolm LeCompte (Mentor)

Dr. Robert Bindschadler, leading an international team of glaciologists and computer scientists including ECSU students, obtained an accurate measure of the area of the Antarctic ice sheet in order to determine whether the amount of ice is growing or diminishing over long time intervals. The grounding line or boundary dividing the ice sheet resting on land from floating ice must be located before the ice sheet's area can be determined. The grounding line's location was determined by combining LANDSAT Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM) image brightness with surface elevation data obtained by the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) aboard NASA's Ice, Land and Cloud elevation Satellite (ICESat) polar orbiting earth observatory. LANDSAT brightness data spatially coincident with GLAS laser altimetry provided a means of correlating ground slope with known elevation. The elevation of the space between GLAS altimetry tracks were interpolated using slopes derived from LANDSAT surface brightness; a method called photo-clinometry.

The Grounding Line (GL) was established using 2003 data. LANDSAT image data contemporary with the grounding line will be compared to earlier LANDSAT imagery of the same area. A small ice shelf near the eastern entrance to Pine Island Bay was previously identified as having diminished over an approximately 17-year span. The disappearance of this ECSU Ice Shelf has been qualitatively characterized. The GL Validation Team will quantify the ice shelf area lost over time since its discovery in 1986. The team will overlay the 2003 GL on LANDSAT 7 ETM 2003 imagery and calculate ice shelf area in the same scene previously recorded by the LANDSAT 4, 5 Thematic Mapper (TM) and LANDSAT-7 ETM.
LANDSAT Images from 2003 used in creating the GL will be obtained from the USGS archive ( and. Next the older, cloud free LANDSAT TM and ETM images of the Pine Island Glacier region will be obtained from another USGS archive ( Image comparison will be accomplished using ITT's Visualization System's ENVI image processing software. Any departure from perfect geographic pixel registration will be corrected using the 2003 image as a reference and registering older images to conform to the common fixed control points visible on both images. The grounding line overlying the 2003 image will be used to compute the area changes in the ice shelf and the geographic coordinates and extent of any departures from coincidence will be recorded and reported.

The objective of the project is three-fold: first provide Dr. Bindschadler with a detailed description of the disappearance of the ECSU Ice Shelf; second, to examine the 2003 grounding line's correspondence to the actual terrain and third, seek the existence of features that may have undergone climate-related changes.