Data Science Research Collaborative

d7 is an data science collaborative at The University of Illinois with collaborations that span across departments and colleges. Each semester, we explore data to discover new and interesting trends, hidden variables, and create reports and visualizations to share.

November 3, 2020

Natalia Ozymko's Algorithm Creates Music for the Altgeld Chimes

As part of the centennial celebration of the iconic Altgeld Chimes at The University of Illinois, the Chimesmaster invited members of the University community to submit pieces to be added to their music library.

Natalia Ozymko, a current senior in Computer Science and d7 researcher, has been leading an effort for developing techniques for the generation of study music using artificial intelligence. Advised by Professor of Music Stephen Taylor, Computer Science Professor Wade Fagen-Ulmschendier, and Statistics Professor Karle Flanagan, Ozymko adapted her algorithm to create a piece that is playable on the Altgeld Chimes.

Details on Ozymko’s algorithm’s first public composition, “Computer Generated Bells”, was added to the Altgeld Chimes’ music library. You might hear it played as you walk on the Illinois campus and you can listen to it (and find out more of the technical details behind it) here. 🎉

June 21, 2020

Undergraduate Students Present d7 Research at ASEE 2020

This morning Natalia Ozymko, a rising senior in Computer Science, and Matthew McCarthy, a rising senior in Mathematics, presented their year-long research work at the annual conference of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE 2020). Their work, “Work In Progress: Analysis of the Impact of Office Hours on Graded Course Assessments”, explored tens of thousands of unique office hour interactions using data collected by the Illinois Open Source Queue. 🎉

Abstract: In this work, we used log files gathered from an online queueing system and combined those logs with the scores students earned on graded assessments. With data from four sections across two semesters of a large sophomore-level computer science course, this work is the largest known observational analysis of the impact of office hour attendance on graded assessments. This work in progress begins this analysis by exploring the relationship between office hour attendance and graded assessments over a full academic year in a large Data Structures course (n=1,238 students).

Our initial findings suggest that there are several relationships that warrant further exploration. The first major finding is that office hour attendance provides a significant increase to a student’s score on upcoming graded homework; however, it does not provide a significant boost to a student’s score on upcoming exams. The second major finding is that the overall impact on a student’s course grade by attending office hours decreases the closer that student attended office hours relative to an assignment due date or exam date.

Our work outlines the statistical techniques used in our analysis, explores differences between various sections of a course across two semesters, and provides an outline of recommended changes for how office hours are run based on lessons learned from this analysis. In the future, we hope that this will lead to improved learning, which will improve students’ mastery of the material and problem-solving abilities.

Full Paper: “Work in Progress: Analysis of the Impact of Office Hours on Graded Course Assessments” by Natalia Ozymko, Matthew McCarthy, Wade Fagen-Ulmschneider, Karin Jensen, and Karle Flanagan; 127th American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition (ASEE 2020).–33960

May 18, 2020

Tamara Nelson-Fromm Wins Top Honor at Illinois' Undergraduate Research Symposium

As part of finalizing her senior thesis, Tamara Nelson-Fromm, a senior in Computer Science and d7 researcher, presented her thesis work at the University of Illinois’ Undergraduate Research Symposium. This annual event attracts over 800 undergraduates across the University of Illinois campus to present their research to faculty, students, and the broader Illinois community. Nelson-Fromm’s presenter her senior thesis work Visualizing Curriculum Commonalities and Prerequisite Chains Through Metro Maps, which includes the The Grainger Engineering Metro Map data visualization.

Nelson-Fromm earned the top honor of Outstanding Poster Presentation in Science & Mathematics for her presentation at the 2020 Undergraduate Research Symposium, placing her work among the top 0.5% presented at the symposium. 🎉