Since 2014, a group of faculty and staff in the College of Engineering have been revolutionizing how students take exams and do homework with PrairieLearn, a tool they created for online assessment. Tim Bretl, professor of aerospace engineering and member of Beckman's Mechanisms of Cognitive Control Group, is a Prairie Learn SIIP project team member. This year, through a Strategic Instructional Innovations Program (SIIP) grant, the team is working to grow the number of courses using PrairieLearn, with the goal of increasing its effectiveness and impact.
An image of work from the Beckman Institute’s Biophotonics Imaging Laboratory, led by Stephen Boppart, appears on the cover of the April 2018 issue of the journal Biophotonics. The invited article, “Optical biopsies can transform pathology,” was written by Boppart, a professor of electrical and computer engineering, of bioengineering, and head of the Center for Optical Molecular Imaging at Beckman, and appears in the Biopinion section. In the article, Boppart relates how he believes current work done in the research labs will, in the future, be done by hospitals in real time. Specifically, he details how histopathology will be done with optical biopsies in real time, in vivo, without stains and without slides.
Beckman Institute Postdoctoral Fellows Dan Kleinman and Fan Lam will present their research at the final Director’s Seminar of the spring semester beginning at noon, Thursday, May 3, in Room 1005 Beckman. Kleinman will talk about “What’s in a Word? Electrophysiological Correlates of Word Selection during Language Production,” and Lam will discuss “Ultrafast Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopic Imaging of the Brain.” The lecture is open to the public, and lunch is provided.
Three Ph.D. students will discuss their research at the Beckman Institute’s Graduate Student Seminar at noon Wednesday, May 2, in Room 1005. The presenters: Zhikun Cai, a member of the Computational Molecular Science Group; and Shachi Mittal and Jorge Tordera Mora, both members of the Bioimaging Science and Technology Group (BST). Lunch will be provided.
Gene Robinson, director of the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology and member of Beckman's Intelligence, Learning and Plasticity Group, is one of three project co-chairs of the Earth BioGenome Project aiming to sequence genomes of 1.5 million species over ten years. Researchers say this will take 10 years, cost $4.7 billion and require more than 200 petabytes of digital storage capacity.
Sameh Tawfick, an assistant professor of mechanical science and engineering and member of Beckman’s Autonomous Materials Systems Group, Beckman Institute Postdoctoral Fellow Caterina Lamuta, and colleagues recently published a study in the journal Smart Material and Structures on how to design super strong artificial muscles. The new muscles are made from carbon fiber-reinforced siloxane rubber and have a coiled geometry, and are capable of lifting up to 12,600 times their own weight. This amount is 18 times more than the specific work natural muscles are capable of producing.
A researcher from the University of Melbourne found that the most prestigious journals also had the fewest women authors – possibly as a result of implicit or explicit bias. “I have had a hell of a time publishing the majority of my papers, including ones that have gone on to have a high impact,” says Kate Clancy, a professor of anthropology and member of Beckman's Social and Emotional Dimensions of Well-Being Group. “I wonder if that’s because I publish mostly with women. My few publications that have a few male authors were far easier to publish.
Students in an area middle school learned principles of coordinate math and computer programming by creating a laser light show in a collaborative project started by University of Illinois researchers in education and engineering. Arend van der Zande, professor of mechanical science and engineering, and member of Beckman's Nanoelectronics and Nanomaterials Group, is part of the project along with two other Illinois faculty members in education and engineering.
The Center for Brain Plasticity, championed and supported by both the Interdisciplinary Health Sciences Institute (IHSI) and the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, brings together researchers, university-wide, with the aims of advancing understanding of the brain and the power of the brain to be changed by experience and other external influences. Led by Aron Barbey, an associate professor of psychology, and Neal Cohen, a professor of psychology and head of the IHSI, the center builds upon the incredible wealth of plasticity research and data at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to provide a nexus for long-term interdisciplinary collaborations.
Kara is a Grants & Contracts Coordinator.
Speech and hearing science professor Laura DeThorne, a member of Beckman's Illinois Language and Literacy Initiative, along with doctoral students Henry Angulo and Veronica Vidal, discuss how the neurodiversity movement recognizes autistic individuals’ unique experiences, skills and strengths, and resists the medicalization of autism.
Sandra Tsing Loh, host of the syndicated daily radio science minute and NPR podcast “The Loh Down on Science” and adjunct associate professor in drama and science communication at University of California, Irvine, presents a talk on effective science communication for the SmithGroup JJR Lecture at noon, Friday, April 20, in the Beckman Institute Auditorium. A reception PRECEDES the lecture at 11 am.
Researchers from the U. of I. have developed an artificial muscle made of carbon fiber and rubber that can lift more than 12,000 times its own weight. Sameh Tawfick, author of the study and assistant professor of mechanical science and engineering, leads the MechSE team on making coiled artificial muscles stronger and more practical. Tawfick is a member of Beckman's Autonomous Materials Systems Group.
Nitya is a 5th-year student in Chemistry, working with the 3D Micro- and Nanosystems Group.
Fifteen students were recently named recipients of the 2018 Beckman Institute student awards. The awards, which are presented to undergraduate and graduate students, will be presented during a reception in April.
Seven graduate students have been awarded 2018 Beckman Institute Graduate Fellowships.
Three Beckman faculty members were honored at an April 12 reception with campus awards for excellence in teaching or guiding research. Timothy Bretl, an associate professor of aerospace engineering and member of the Mechanisms of Cognitive Control Group, received the Campus Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. Gregory Girolami, a professor of chemistry and member of the Nanoelectronics and Nanomaterials Group, received the Campus Award for Excellence in Graduate and Professional Teaching. Scott R. White, a professor of aerospace engineering and member of the Autonomous Materials Systems Group, received the Campus Award for Excellence in Guiding Undergraduate Research.
A new paper from a team of Illinois legal scholars argues that reformers of the burgeoning #MeToo movement ought to heed the core principles of restorative and transitional justice and take into account the needs of both victims and offenders, as well as the larger community. Two Beckman faculty members were co-authors of the paper: Jennifer Robbennolt, the associate dean for research at the College of Law and a member of Beckman’s Social and Emotional Dimensions of Well-being Group; and Colleen Murphy, the director of the Women and Gender in Global Perspectives Program at Illinois and a member of the Organizational Intelligence and Computation Social Science Group.
Robb Lindgren, curriculum and instruction professor and member of Beckman's Organizational Intelligence and Computational Social Science Group, will give a talk at the April 15 American Educational Resource Association Division C annual meeting. Lindgren's talk will cover “Designing Embodied Learning: Considerations of Perception and Action in Humanistic Research on Learning Technologies."
A group of researchers from the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence, the University of Illinois, and the University of Washington developed artificial intelligence capable of making original videos of "The Flintstones" from text descriptions. Derek Hoiem, associate professor of computer science and member of Beckman's Intelligence, Learning, and Plasticity Group, collaborated on the project.
Three Beckman scientists will be featured at the next Tech Talk, “Human Brain Stiffness: From Cognitive Neuroscience to the Clinic,” at noon Tuesday, April 17 in Beckman Room 5602. Lunch will be provided.
Brad Sutton, a professor of bioengineering, the technical director of the Biomedical Imaging Center at the Beckman Institute, and a faculty member of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine, was awarded the 2018 Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology Vision and Spirit Award.
Brad Sutton, bioengineering professor and member of Beckman's Bioimaging Science and Technology Group, has been elected a 2018 Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. Sutton was elected for outstanding contributions to image reconstruction technology for magnetic resonance imaging, enabling new applications of neuroimaging and dynamic imaging.
The campus community is invited to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Arnold Beckman, the founder of the Beckman Institute, on his birthday at a reception in the Beckman atrium at 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 10. At 1:15 p.m., this year’s Vision and Spirit Award recipient will be announced, honoring a Beckman researcher who exemplifies Beckman’s vision and the institute’s mission. Refreshments will be served.
Viktor Gruev, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and a member of Beckman’s Bioimaging Science and Technology Group, led a team that developed a multispectral camera to guide cancer surgery, inspired by the eyes of the morpho butterfly.
Viktor Gruev, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and member of Beckman's Bioimaging Science and Technology Group, led a study demonstrating underwater global positioning made possible by a bio-inspired camera that mimics the eyes of a mantis shrimp.
Illinois researchers are studying the cardiotoxicity of doxorubicin (DOX), one of the most commonly used chemotherapeutic drugs.
Aleksei Aksimentiev, associate professor of physics and member of Beckman's Nanoelectronics and Nanomaterials Group, contributes to a study reporting that a voltage can be read out in a nanopore with a dedicated Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) sensor on a DNA origami.