UNM College of Education

Excellence and Diversity through People, Ideas & Innovation


Research Grants

Empirically-based Instructional Tools for Fostering Engineering Problem Solving and Cognitive Flexibility in Pre-college Students

PI: Roxana Moreno, Educational Psychology Program
Agency: National Science Foundation

While a number of outreach programs, such as the Infinity Project, has developed and implemented curricula and organizational structures to address the urgent need to educate middle- and high school students in engineering, there is a pronounced lack of research examining the cognitive and affective effects of pre-college engineering instruction. Building on the complementary expertise of the PIs in engineering education and educational psychology research, this project will address the need for empirically-based instructional techniques that effectively foster engineering problem solving skills and cognitive flexibility in pre-college students.

Bridging the Gap Between Theory and Practice in Teacher Education:Guided Interactive Virtual Environments (GIVEs) for Case-Based Learning

PI: Roxana Moreno, Educational Psychology Program
Agency: National Science Foundation

Based on a careful examination of current research in cognitive science, the project starts by proposing a cognitive model to promote the deep understanding and reflective thinking of highly complex systems such as teaching in a classroom of diverse learners. Next, a set of case-based methods to be implemented through the GIVE system is identified. Finally, the project consists of the following major tasks: a collaborate effort with in-service teachers designing a library of relevant materials and case studies; developing diagnostic pretests and evaluative posttests; collecting and analyzing data on the cognitive processes, learning products, and changes in the attitudes, beliefs, and motivation of preservice teachers who learn with the GIVE system; and carrying out a follow-up longitudinal study into the classroom.

Curriculum Enhancement and Creation of a Multi-Purpose Foods Lab for a Nutrition/Dietetics Program

PI: Carole Conn
Agency: United States Department of Agriculture

In August 2005, the Nutrition/Dietetics Program at the University of New Mexico received a five year grant (#2005-38422-15954) from the UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE through the Hispanic Serving Institutions Education Grants Program.

This project focuses on:

  • Creation of up-to-date facilities for teaching food science and food-related content in other required nutrition courses at the University of New Mexico;
  • Redesign of specific course content to enhance student learning related to food science, food safety, food production, food demonstration, and multicultural aspects of food by increasing food-handling experience;
  • Improved retention of underrepresented students in the Nutrition and Dietetics Program at UNM. Culinary experts at Central New Mexico College and an advisory committee of local experts on Hispanic foods and culture will assist in all aspects of the project.    
Revitalizing Quality Nutrition Services

PI: Donna Lockner
Agency: New Mexico Department of Health WIC Program

  • Research design and evaluation of a study aimed at improving WIC staff members' self-efficacy and skill related to pediatric overweight prevention counseling
  • Support of graduate research assistants who will complete majority of data collection
Partners in Excellence Leadership Training in Maternal and Child Health Nutrition

PI: Donna Lockner Nutrition and Dietetics Program
Agency: Maternal and Child Health Bureau

This scope of the two year sub-contract with University of California Los Angeles includes:

  • Recruitment and support for trainees for 2009-2010
  • Planning of Western MCH Nutrition Leadership Network meeting
  • Coordination MCHB Nutrition Grantee meeting
  • Assessment of continuing education needs of nutrition professionals
  • Updating information for MCHB training website
  • Participation in design of new website for UCLA Partners in Excellence Leadership Training in MCH Nutrition