National Computational Science Institute

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The Shodor Education Foundation announces the creation of The National Computational Science Institute (NCSI). NCSI expands the already popular regional workshops known as the Shodor Computational Science Institute (SCSI). At over 18 partner sites across the country, NCSI introduces the hands-on use of computational science, numerical models, and data visualization tools across the curriculum.

The National Science Foundation has awarded a three-year, $2.75M grant (Award Number: DUE-0127488) enabling NCSI to offer a national set of in-person, video-conferenced, and web-accessible workshops, seminars, and support activities. The initial target audience for NCSI are teams of faculty from predominantly undergraduate institutions (PUI's), minority serving institutions (MSI's), and community colleges whose students are either the next generation of scientists and engineers, the next generation of K-12 teachers, or both. With supplemental funding, NCSI plans to offer computational science workshops and sponsor educational activities for in-service teachers, business and government leaders, and the general public. NCSI participants then assist others on their own campuses and at neighboring institutions to introduce computational science in their own classes. NCSI proceeds along three synergistic but distinct routes that can be modeled as PULL, PUSH, and PERMEATE.

Regionally distributed workshops PULL faculty within a reasonable travel distance for a week of intense interdisciplinary training, collaboration, and curriculum development in computational science. Participants explore the use of modeling and visualization tools in existing courses, while stimulating creation of new courses and promoting new modes of undergraduate research. NCSI staff and participants proactively PUSH computational science and computational science education onto the agendas of professional and discipline-specific societies, offer workshops, conduct tutorials, present papers and posters, and serve on program committees. To sustain these efforts, NCSI works to PERMEATE on-going and proposed undergraduate curriculum efforts with computational science content. NCSI develops and provides interdisciplinary and discipline specific web-accessible courses for faculty enhancement, such as Computational Chemistry for Chemistry Educators, and resources for interactive exploration including interactive curricula, problem-based modeling modules, tools, and tutorials.

Shodor's award-winning Computational Science Education Reference Desk serves as the organizing structure for dissemination of NCSI materials.

NCSI operates in partnership with the Education, Outreach and Training Partnership for Advanced Computational Infrastructure (EOT-PACI), The National Center for Supercomputing Applications, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Clemson University, Appalachian State University, the National Computational Science Education Consortium (NCSEC), the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, Sigma Xi, the North Carolina Supercomputing Center, and more than two dozen academic institutions, high performance computing centers and vendors.

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This project is supported, in part, by the

National Science Foundation

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