SIS faculty win NSF grant


Peter Brusilovsky and Vladimir Zadorozhny have been awarded a grant by the National Science Foundation to create a “Personalized Exploratorium for Database Courses.”  Announced on January 10, 2007, this $143,345 grant will support the development of an innovative tool to encourage students to develop practical SQL skills through the use of interactive, automatically-evaluated exercises and examples. Brusilovsky and Zadorozhny will build upon a previous project (also NSF-supported) that used interactive exercises for C language programming:  the current project will explore the value of interactive exercises in the context of Database courses.

Brusilovsky and Zadorozhny will adapt an existing technology for automatic evaluation of SQL exercises (SQL-Tutor) developed by Dr. Antonija Mitrovic at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand while also developing a complementary script-based evaluation technology.  This two-year project will result in a set of interactive SQL examples for the original SQL-Tutor technology and enhancing it with personalized guidance that is known to increase student engagement and success rate. 

Associate Professor Brusilovsky joined the faculty at the School of Information Sciences in 2000, teaching in the programming, interactive system design, and information storage and retrieval areas.  His research interests include adaptive hypermedia and adaptive Web; user modeling and personalization; navigation support in electronic environments; intelligent tutoring systems and shells; Web-based education; and human-computer interaction.  Brusilovsky won the prestigious National Science Foundation’s Career Award in 2005 which is funding his research on personalized information access. Zadorozhny, Assistant Professor, has been a member of the SIS faculty since 2001 and teaches a variety of courses in the Database and Web Systems Track of Study.  His research interests cover networked information systems, wireless and sensor data management, and scalable architectures.  Most recently, Zadorozhny was the recipient of a grant from the Norwegian Research Council to investigate designing efficient security and privacy solutions for applications in wireless networks (with Prashant Krishnamurthy).