Directed Study


Are you interested in doing research or directed study with me? My department offers some courses for this:

I’m currently working on multiple projects and grant proposals related to computing education. It’s okay if your project idea does not completely align with my current work so long it has a computing education element. You should meet with me in person to discuss.

Undergraduate Student?

If you are an undergraduate student interested in research, then I encourage you to look at the course description for CSCI 4960; students who take this faculty-mentored research course and work with me towards answering their own research question can earn experiential learning requirement (ELR) credit. If you are only interested in writing code or designing user interfaces, then I encourage you to look at CSCI 4950; students who take this directed study course with me often help directly contribute to various open source projects.

Undergraduate students will be asked to prepare a research paper and/or literature review for submission to an academic conference such as ACMSE or SIGCSE and are expected to present their research in departmental and institutional research events such as UGA CS Day and the UGA CURO Symposium.

Graduate Student?

If you are a graduate student, then I encourage you to talk to me personally about the 6000-level (or above) offerings. Students who take CSCI 6950 usually assist with ongoing undergraduate and graduate research within my lab; this includes meeting with other group members, writing code, writing documentation, and assisting with manuscript preparation. Students who take CSCI 7000 or CSCI 7200 are expected to conduct a full research project related to computing education under my guidance and have at least one article submitted to an academic conference prior to project completion.

Proposal Guidelines

I encourage you to talk to me personally about your idea before submitting a proposal. If we both agree to work together, then you will need to provide a 3—10 page project proposal using the ACM Master Article Template. This proposal should use a modified IMRaD1 structure and include, at a minimum, the following sections:

  • Abstract
  • Introduction — explain your project idea and why it is significant.
  • Related Work — provide a brief overview of similar and/or related projects (majority should be scholarly works).
  • Methods — explain your plan, including a list of deliverables with proposed dates.
  • Implications — discuss the potential impact of the project.
  • References — provide a list of references using the ACM Citation Style and Reference Format.

I personally require that a copy of your proposal be attached to the permission of department form before I will sign it. All students should read this article to help mitigate common language issues in their proposal. Students who wish to explore a research project are encouraged to read this article before drafting their proposal.

I accept proposals on a rolling basis:

Intended Term Due Date Due Time
Fall June 30 11:59 PM AoE2
Spring October 31 11:59 PM AoE
Summer April 30 11:59 PM AoE

To submit a proposal, please email me a copy of the proposal and request an office hours meeting to discuss it.

Past Directed Studies

Student names used with permission.

Mitchell Casleton
Mitchell Casleton

Project: Bibscrap: Semi-automated Tools for Systematic Literature Reviews

CSCI 4960: Summer 2021
CSCI 4950: Fall 2021
CURO Research Assistant: Spring 2022

Matthew Pooser
Matthew Pooser

Lab Mentorship Coordinator

CSCI 6950: 2020

My Nguyen
My Nguyen

Project: Bibscrap: Semi-automated Tools for Systematic Literature Reviews

CSCI 4960: Fall 2020

Dray DeLosier
Dray DeLosier

Project: An Active Implementation of a 3D Graphics Engine

CSCI 4960: Summer 2020

Matthew Chapman
Matthew Chapman

Lab Mentorship Coordinator

CSCI 6950: Spring 2020

Kevin Bonanno
Kevin Bonanno

Contributed to the ScalaTion Kernel project by testing and revising the installation guide, fixing some bugs related to deprecated code, and updating the kernel user guide so that it's available as an interactive Jupyter notebook.

CSCI 4950: Spring 2019

Michael Runyan
Michael Runyan

Conducted a data science investigation that explores the relationship between social media sentiment and the price of cryptocurrencies.

CSCI 4950: Summer 2018
CSCI 4960: Fall 2018

Card image cap
Dat Le-Phan

Contributed to the ScalaTion Kernel project, fixing some known bugs, implementing new graphing/plotting capabilities for ScalaTion vectors, and updating corresponding documentation.

CSCI 4950: Spring 2018

Funding Opportunities

From time to time, there may grant-funded assistantships available for participating undergraduate students. Additional avenues for potential funding include:


  1. IMRaD is acronym that stands for Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion. GMU has a great article on how to prepare IMRaD abstracts here. I also suggest reading this article by Dr. Philip Koopman, an Associate Professor at Carnegie Mellon University. 

  2. AoE - Anywhere on Earth (UTC-12h)