Preparing for Future Digital Education
MSU researchers, including Dong Zhao, CM Associate Professor, and Ken Frank, MSU Foundation Professor, will explore collaboration in a virtual environment, which is critical to the future workforce of architecture, construction, and engineering.
A research team including Dong Zhao, Construction Management Associate Professor, and Ken Frank, MSU Foundation Professor, has been selected for a National Science Foundation grant on “Exploring Student Virtual Collaborations to Prepare for Future Digital Education.”
Collaboration skills in the virtual environment are critical to the future workforce in the architecture, construction, and engineering industry, because virtual design and construction (VDC) is becoming the work style and culture for construction projects in the United States. The goal of this project is to explore collaboration in the virtual environment; for example, describing collaboration characteristics and identifying collaboration processes and influences on learning.
Since 2010, more than 5,000 online courses have emerged, and this number is growing. Many institutions have changed their instructional modality to include online or hybrid approaches, and the trend of e-learning is expected to continue in the post-pandemic era.
“I believe the outcomes of this project will improve the understanding of virtual collaboration and prepare students for better learning in the future virtual environment,” said the project’s principal investigator, Zhao, who will be joining his expertise in teams and social network analysis with Frank’s.