Virtual Reality for Anxiety, Pain, and Depression During Chemotherapy
Under a longitudinal study assessing the pain and anxiety management of cancer patients led by Dr. Stanley, associate professor and graduate coordinator, and Dr. Elizabeth Cull, a medical oncologist at Greenville Health Systems, Josh has been testing a new form of chemo patient therapy that allows patients to escape the hospital into a virtual world. We follow the effects VR therapy has on pain, anxiety, and depression
Using "artificial emotional intelligence" to deliver pain and anxiety relief via virtual reality.
Using "artificial emotional intelligence" to deliver Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to those with addictions.
Mixed Reality and Collaborative Robotics - 2020
Using "artificial emotional intelligence" for the future of work with collaborative robots.
NSF Cyber-Human Systems:$1.2M Grant (2019-2023)
The Story of AMELIA (AMELIA: AugMEnted Learning InnovAtion)
Collaborative robotics is a growing application space in robot technology used in manufacturing, mining, construction, and energy industrial settings. This convergence research project will contribute new knowledge and theory of Human-Computer Interaction and Human-Robot Interaction, by augmenting human cognition for safer and more efficient collaborative robot interaction.
To meet these goals, the team of researchers plans to:
(1) develop a novel HRI task/scenario classification scheme in collaborative robotics environments vulnerable to observable systems failures;
(2) establish fundamental neurophysiological, cognitive, and socio-behavioral capability models (e.g., workload, cognitive load, fatigue/stress, affect, and trust) during these HRI (i.e., the mind motor machine nexus);
(3) use these models to determine when and how a human’s cognitive, social, behavioral and environmental states require adjustment via technology to enhance HRI for efficient and safe work performance; and finally
(4) create an innovative and transformative Work 4.0 architecture (AMELIA: AugMEnted Learning InnovAtion) that includes a layer of augmented reality for human and robots to mutually learn and communicate current states.
The team proposes a novel communication scheme using artificial emotional intelligence in which robots and humans collaborate in potentially dangerous situations. The robot will detect the worker’s “cognitive state” using different machine learning techniques, and then take the appropriate action. Ultimately AMELIA seeks to empower the worker to focus on complex, cognitive problem-solving tasks, performed safely and efficiently, while ensuring that it adapts to both the worker's attitudes and cognitive states.
Mixed Reality Development, Code, & Non-Identifying Data
Collaborative Robotics and Immersive Technology
Children's Science Museum of Bozeman Outreach Demo
Mixed Reality Demo
PhD student, Ashish Teotia, demonstrates the Mixed Reality Hololens 2.
Science is Fun with VR and MR
PhD student, Ashish Teotia, talks about the role math and science play in VR world creations.
NSF-AMELIA Technology Demonstrations
Integration of Physiological Inputs + Co-Robot Control into Mixed Reality using Microsoft's Hololens 2
Interface between human and collaborative robot - early functioning interface.
Using Hololens 2 to Control Co-Robot Remotely
Interface between human and collaborative robot - early functioning interface.
iPAL Technology Demonstrations
Volumetric Video Capture
Our 1st Phase in generating mixed reality content for our patients.
Peer Reviewed Publications
Kalatzis A., Stanley L., Karthikeyan R., & Mehta R. Mental stress classification during a motor task in older adults using an Artificial Neural Network. 8th international workshop on human activity sensing corpus and applications (HASCA). Proceedings of the 2020 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing and Proceedings of the 2020 ACM International Symposium on Wearable Computers -UbiComp/ISWC ’20, 2020.
Prabhu, V., Stanley, C. Linder, & R. Morgan, “Affective computing in virtual reality environments for pain and anxiety management,” in Proceedings - 2020 IEEE International Conference on Human-Machine Systems, 2020.
Rahman, S., Wittie, M., Stanley, L., & Patterson, S. MicroLambda Packetized Computation for 5G Mobile Edge Computing, USEnix, USENIX Association HotEdge 20 3rd USENIX Workshop on Hot Topics in Edge Computing, June, 2020
Prabhu, V., Linder, C., Stanley, L. & Morgan, R. Affective Computing in Virtual Reality Environments for Managing Surgical Pain and Anxiety, Proceedings of the 2019 International Conference on IEEE Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality, December, 2019.
E. H. Cull, A. Saha, L. M. Stanley, V. G. Prabhu, & J. Biro, “Analyzing the Efficacy and Design Considerations of VR Environments to Manage Anxiety & Depression in AYA Cancer Patients,” Blood, vol. 134, no. Supplement_1, pp. 3441–3441, Nov. 2019.
Biro, J., Linder, C., & Stanley, L. Applications of Virtual Environments in Human Factors Research and Practice: Utilizing Virtual Reality and Biofeedback as an Adjunct Treatment in Addressing the Opioid Crisis. Human Factors & Ergonomics Society Annual Conference, abstract and demonstration, Washington, DC., October, 2019.
Hinges, A., Biro, J., & Stanley, L. Analyzing the Mood-Improvement Effects of Exposure to Virtual Reality Dogs, National Conference on Undergraduate Research, Kennesaw, Georgia, April 10-13, 2019.
Deb, S., Carruth, D. Fuad, M., Stanley, L., & Frey D., Comparison of child and adult pedestrian perspectives of external features on autonomous vehicles using a virtual reality experiment, Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing, Volume 964, Springer Nature, 2019.
Clause, K., Shvorin, D., Pirrallo, R., & Stanley, L., Utilizing Virtual Exposure Therapy in Emergent Clinical Care to Reduce Antipsychotic Medication Usage, Applied Ergonomics Conference, New Orleans, March 25-28, 2019.
Hinges, A., Biro, J., & Stanley, L. Analyzing the Mood-Improvement Effects of Exposure to Virtual Reality Dogs, National Conference on Undergraduate Research, Kennesaw, Georgia, April 10-13, 2019.
Rickert, A., Walter, T., Linder, C., & Stanley, L. Examination of Presence in VR Through Haptically Delivered Thermal Stimuli, National Conference on Undergraduate Research, Kennesaw, Georgia, April 10-13, 2019.
.Deb, S., Carruth, D. Fuad, M., Stanley, L., & Frey D., Comparison of child and adult pedestrian perspectives of external features on autonomous vehicles using virtual reality experiment, International Conference on Human Factors and Ergonomics, Washington D.C., July 24-28, 2019.
Prabhu, V. & Stanley, L. Analyzing the Efficacy of VR to Mitigate Acute Pain and Anxiety in Operative Settings, Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference, Orlando, FL, 2019.
Goyal, A., Pierluigi P., McClendon, J., Stanley, L, & Schmueser, D. Analysis of Text Attributes for Passive Vehicle-to-Pedestrian Communication in an Autonomoous Vehicle using Ramsis Automotive Module, Human-Computer Interaction International, proceedings, Orlando, FL, 2019.
Agnisarman, S., Madathil, K., & Stanley, L., A Survey of Empirical Studies on Persuasive Technologies to Promote Sustainable Living, Sustainable Computing: Informatics and Systems Journal, 2018.
Barry, J., Schiff, S., Biro, J., Ghalayani, M., & Stanley, L., Personas to Improve the Development of Healthcare Focused Virtual Reality Applications, Southeastern Human Factors Applied Research Conference, poster, 2018.
Prabhu, V., Shvorin, D., Stanley, L., & Pirrallo, R. A Comparative Study Between Resident and Attending Physicians in the Emergency Department to Analyze Stress and Burnout, Southeastern Human Factors Applied Research Conference, poster, 2018.
Prabhu, V., Shvorin, D., Stanley, L., & Coldebella, R. Physician Distraction in the Emergency Department, Southeastern Human Factors Applied Research Conference, poster, April 2018.
Biro, J.& Stanley, L., Evaluating the Efficacy of VR for Managing the Pain and Anxiety of AYA Cancer Patients, Southeastern Human Factors Applied Research Conference, poster, April 2018.
Ghalayani, M., Schiff, S. & Stanley, L., The Use of VR for Acute Pain Management in Operative Care Environments, Southeastern Human Factors Applied Research Conference, poster, April 2018.
Mears, L., Niaki, F., Muth, R., & Stanley, L. Additive Manufacturing: Sociology and Psychology as Fundamental Design Elements for Future Advanced Production Systems, David Dornfeld Manufacturing Vision Award and Blue Sky Competition (NSF sponsored), abstract, 2018.
.Stanley, L. Fatigue Monitoring Technologies for Detecting Driver Drowsiness, Human Factors & Ergonomics Society Annual Conference, abstract, Washington, DC., September, 2016. http://pro.sagepub.com/content/60/1/993.abstract
Mueller, J., & Stanley, L. Multivariate Analysis of Driver Responses in Simulator and On-Road, Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference, poster, Anaheim, CA, 2016.
Young, K., & Stanley, L. Teen Driving Attitudinal and Behavioral Differences Across Two States, Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference Proceedings, Anaheim, CA, 2016.
Imtiaz, A., & Stanley, L. On-Road Study Assessing the Effect of Age and Experience on Hazard Perception, Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference, poster, Anaheim, CA, 2016.
Stanley, L & Young, K. Validity Assessment of Virtual Reality through Geo-Specific Scenarios. Applied Ergonomics Conference, poster, March 21-24, 2016.
Manlove, K., Stanley, L., and Peck, A. A quantitative approach to assessing the efficacy of occupant protection programs: A case study from Montana, Accident Analysis and Prevention Journal, Volume 83, October 2015, Pages 214–221.
Stanley, L., Hoyt, T., Scott, A., & Plumb, C. An Experiment in the Integration of a Communications Toolkit into the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Curriculum, IEEE Transactions in Professional Communication. 2015, pending revisions.
Young, K. & Stanley, L., Human Factors Design of a Low-Cost Adjustable Wheel Locking System for a Child’s Wheelchair, 6th International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics, Las Vegas, USA July 26-30, 2015.
Imtiaz, A., & Stanley, L. Hazard Perception Differences Between Experienced and Less Experienced Drivers, Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference Proceedings, Nashville, TN, 2015.
Mueller, J., Young, K., & Stanley, L. Validating a Driving Simulator: Effect of Increased Mental Effort While Driving on Real Roads and in Simulators. Transportation Research Board 2015 Annual Meeting. Transportation Research Board: Washington, D.C., January 2015.
Mueller, J., Young, K., & Stanley, L. Driver Characteristics: Simulated and On-Road Driver Stopping Behaviors. Transportation Research Board 2015 Annual Meeting. Transportation Research Board: Washington, D.C., January 2015.
Schell, B., Claudio, D., Sobek, D., Stanley, L., & Ward, N. Introducing Flexibility in an Engineering Curriculum Through Student Designed Elective Programs. 2014 ASEE Annual Conference, June 2014.
Page, L. & Stanley, L. Ergonomics Service Learning Project: Implementing an Alternative Educational Method in an Industrial Engineering Undergraduate Ergonomics Course. Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics in Manufacturing & Service Industries 00 (0) 1–13 (2014). 2014. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/hfm.20544/abstract
Mueller, J., Gallagher, C., Martin, T. & Stanley, L. Driving Simulator and Scenario Effects on Driver Response. Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference Proceedings. Montreal, CAN, May 2014. http://www.xcdsystem.com/iie2014/abstract/finalpapers/I184.pdf
Imtiaz, A., Mueller, J. & Stanley, L. Driving Behavior Differences among Early Licensed Teens, Novice Teens, and Experienced Drivers in Simulator and Real World Hazards. Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference Proceedings. Montreal, CAN, May 2014. http://www.xcdsystem.com/iie2014/abstract/finalpapers/I1467.pdf
Imtiaz, A. & Stanley, L. Characterizing Eye Movement Behavior of Teen Drivers while Following a Left Turing Truck at Stop Controlled Intersection. 12th Annual Regional National Occupational Research Agenda Symposium. Salt Lake City, UT. April 2014.
Stanley, L., Manlove K., Peck, A. Evaluating the Effectiveness of Occupant Protection Programs. Conference on Statistical Practice, Tampa, FL February 20-22, 2014.
Mueller, J. & Stanley, L. Emergency Medical Services: A Naturalistic Posture Evaluation While Providing Patient Care during Patient Transport. Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting Proceedings, San Diego, CA, October 2013. http://pro.sagepub.com/content/57/1/1546.short
Mueller, J. & Stanley, L. Contributors toward Ambulance Use of Lights and Sirens from Patient Records. Open Journal of Safety Science and Technology, Vol 3., No. 3, 2013, pp 63-68, www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?PaperID=37092.
Mueller, J., Hoyt, T. & Stanley, L. Improving Restraint Feasibility through Ambulance Layout Redesign. 7th Annual Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driver Assessment, Training and Vehicle Design, Bolton Landing, NY, June 17-20, 2013. http://drivingassessment.uiowa.edu/sites/default/files/DA2013/Papers/014_Mueller_0.pdf
Stanley, L. Complexity of Instrumentation in Assessing Virtual vs Real World Hazard Perception Environments. Proceedings 1st Annual International Conference on Industrial & Systems Engineering, Athens, Greece, June 24-27, 2013.
Mueller, J., Stanley, L., Azamian, T. & Mercer, D. Assessing Physiological Response Validity in Simulated and Real Driving Environments. Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference Proceedings. San Juan, PR, May 2013. http://www.xcdsystem.com/iie2014/abstract/finalpapers/I184.pdf
Young, K. & Stanley, L. Driver’s Attitudes and Behaviors Regarding Voice Activated Texting Technology and Distracted Driving. Proceedings of the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference, Puerto Rico, 2013. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P3-3169587921.html
Page, L., Stanley, L., & Sharma, J. Teen drivers’ hazard perception – are we using crash-representative testing scenarios? Proceedings of the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference, Orlando, FL, 2012. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P3-2813482121.html
Mueller, J., L. Stanley and Manlove, K. "Multi-Stage Novice Defensive Driver Training Program: Does It Create Overconfidence?," Open Journal of Safety Science and Technology, Vol. 2 No. 4, 2012, pp. 133-139. doi: 10.4236/ojsst.2012.24017. http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?paperID=25536
Ward, N.J., Durkee, S., & Stanley, L. An Objective Evaluation of an Education-Based Distracted and Drowsy Driving Intervention for Rural Teen Drivers. 5th International Conference on Traffic and Transport Psychology. Groningen, The Netherlands, August 29 – 31, 2012.
Antin, J., Lockhart, T., Stanley, L. & Guo, F. Comparing the Impairment Profiles of Older Drivers and Non-Drivers. Journal of Safety Science, Volume 50, Issue 2, February 2012, pp 333-341. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S092575351100258X
Young, K., & Stanley, L. Voice Activated Texting-Is It Safer than Conventional Texting While Driving? National Council for Undergraduate Research Annual Conference, Ogden, Utah 2012, https://ncur.weber.edu/ncur/search/Display_NCUR.aspx?id=62324
McGowen, P., & Stanley, L. An Alternative Methodology for Determining Gap Acceptance, Journal of Transportation Engineering, doi:10.1061/(ASCE)TE.1943-5436.0000358. 2011, http://ascelibrary.org/teo/resource/1/jtpexx/v1/i1/p267_s1?isAuthorized=no
Stanley, L., Angell, L., Perez, M., Deering, R., Llaneras, R, and Green, C. Modeling/Analysis of Pedestrian Back-Over Crashes from NHTSA’s SCI Database. Society of Automotive Engineers International, doi:10.4271/2011-01-0588, 2011.
Stanley, L. & Hoyt, T. A Service Learning Case Study for the Ergonomics Classroom. Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Conference Proceedings, September 2011. vol. 55 no. 1525-1529 http://pro.sagepub.com/content/55/1/525.abstract
Stanley, L., Angell, L., Perez, M., Deering, R., Llaneras, R, and Green, C. Modeling/Analysis of Pedestrian Back-Over Crashes from NHTSA’s SCI Database. SAE International Journal of Passenger Cars– Mechanical Systems, Volume 4, pgs 562-571, 2011. http://saepcmech.saejournals.org/content/4/1/562.full.pdf+html
Stanley, L., Page, L., and Plumb, C. Designing for the Disabled in the Engineering Classroom, Frontiers in Education Conference/American Society of Engineering Education Proceedings, October, 2010. 978-1-4244-6262-9/10, IEEE. http://fie-conference.org/fie2010/papers/1307.pdf
Sanddal T., Sanddal N., Ward N. & Stanley L. Ambulance Crash Characteristics in the U.S. Defined by the Popular Press: A Retrospective Analysis. Emergency Medicine International, vol. 2010, Article ID 525979, 7 pages, 2010. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/emi/2010/525979/
Hoyt, T., Stanley, L., and Sanddal, N. Rural EMS Worker Restraint Usage and Feasibility in Emergency Response Vehicles, Annals of Advances in Automotive Medicine, 2010.
Stanley, L. and Ward, N. An Evaluation of Cooperative Avoidance Warning System. International Journal of Vehicle Safety, Volume 5, Number 1, 2010, pages 86-99. http://inderscience.metapress.com/app/home/contribution.asp?referrer=parent&backto=issue,6,6;journal,3,16;linkingpublicationresults,1:119746,1
Atkins, P. and Stanley, L. Design and Evaluation of a Collision Avoidance System for Cyclists. The IMAGE Society Annual Conference Proceedings, June 2009.
Antin, J., Stanley, L., and Cicaro, K. Conventional vs. Moving-Map Navigation Methods: Efficiency and Safety Evaluation. Transportation Research Record, No 2138, 34-41, 2009. http://pubsindex.trb.org/view.aspx?id=880812
Stanley, L. and Mueller, J. Effectiveness of a Multistage Driver Education Program for Novice Drivers. Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting Proceedings, October 2009 vol. 53 no. 181348-1352 http://pro.sagepub.com/content/53/18/1348.abstract
Mueller, J. and Stanley, L. Differences in Self-Reported versus Department of Motor Vehicle in Citation History for Teen Drivers, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)’s National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Proceedings, April 2009.
Antin, J., Stanley, L., and Cicaro, K. Conventional vs. Moving-Map Navigation Methods: Efficiency and Safety Evaluation. TRB 2009 Annual Meeting CD-ROM. Transportation Research Board: Washington, DC. http://pubsindex.trb.org/view.aspx?id=880359
Antin, J. F., Lockhart, T., Shi, W., Stanley, L., Haynes, C., Parajit, P., and Guo, F. Why do older drivers give up their keys? The role of functional impairment. International Conference on Traffic & Transport Psychology, Washington, D.C. (2008). http://www.icttp.com/presentations/pdfs/O73.pdf
Marley, R., Stanley, L. and Muthumani, A. Recent evolutions in the curricula of leading industrial engineering programs within the United States. Proceedings of the Annual Conference on Industrial Engineering—Theory, Applications and Practice, Las Vegas, NV, 2008, pp 330-334.
Stanley, L. Human Factors in Transportation Safety. National Science Foundation Women in IE Academia Workshop Proceedings, U.S., Turkey, and the Middle East, July 2008.
Stanley, L. and Marley, R. Recent Evolutions in the Curricula of Leading Industrial Engineering Programs within the U.S. Proceedings of the Annual Conference on Industrial Engineering—Theory, Applications and Practice, September 2008, pp 330-334.
Stanley, L. and Kelly, M. Validating Transportation Safety Deployments and Highway Design Elements in Simulated Environments. Canadian Multidisciplinary Road Safety Conference Proceedings, June 2008. http://www.carsp.ca/documents/750
Stanley, L., Marley, Robert, J. and Kelly, M. Design of Interfaces for Advanced Crash Avoidance Systems. Proceedings of the Annual Conference on Industrial Engineering—Theory, Applications and Practice, November 2007, pp. 767-773
Kelly, M., Lassacher, S., and Stanley, L. Formative Evaluation of Engineering Designs using Driver Performance in an Immersive Driving Simulator. Fourth International Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driver Assessment Training and Vehicle Design Proceedings, July 2007, pgs. 431- 437. http://drivingassessment.uiowa.edu/DA2007/PDF/071_KellyLassacher.pdf
Stanley, L ., Marley, R., and Kelly, M. Haptic and Auditory Cues for Roadway Departure Warnings. Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting Proceedings, October 2006, vol. 50 no. 222405-2408. http://pro.sagepub.com/content/50/22/2405.abstract
Stanley, L., Hardy, A., and Lassacher S. Driver Responses to Enhanced Wildlife Advisories in a Simulated Environment. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 2006, No. 1980, pp 126-133. http://trb.metapress.com/content/j4346607853m00l0/
Stanley, L., Marley, R. Whole Body Vibrations on the Low Back Using a Suspension Versus Non-Suspension Seat Post During Off-Road Cycling. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise Journal, Volume 38(5), May 2006. http://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/Citation/2006/05001/Whole_Body_Vibrations_on_the_Low_Back_Using_a.1368.aspx
Stanley, L., Hardy, A., and Lassacher, S. Enhanced Wildlife Warnings as a Potential Means of Reducing Wildlife-Vehicle Collision. National Rural ITS Conference Proceedings, August 2006.
Stanley, L., Hardy, A., and Lassacher, S. Driver Responses to Enhanced Wildlife Advisories in a Simulated Environment. TRB 2006 Annual Meeting CD-ROM. Transportation Research Board: Washington, DC. http://pubsindex.trb.org/view.aspx?id=880359
Stanley, L. and Philip, D. Development of a Web-Based Household Travel Survey. Institute of Transportation Engineers District 6 Meeting Proceedings, July 2005.
Stanley, L., Kelly, M., and Lassacher, Suzanne. Driver Performance While Interacting with the 511 Travel Information System in Urban and Rural Traffic. Third International Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driver Assessment Training and Vehicle Design Proceedings, June 2005, pages 486-492 http://drivingassessment.uiowa.edu/DA2005/PDF/71_Stanley_Kellyformat.pdf
Your resource for conducting research...
Scientific Writing Guidelines
IRB Forms and Process, CITI Training, Logging your Hours Worked in MSU MyInfo
Human Computer Interaction Tools
Dissemination Tools - Research Posters and Presentations
Unsolicited Advice to Proposers from NSF Program Directors
Includes thoughts from my NSF service as Program Director (CISE Directorate - Cyber Human Systems Group) from 2015-2016 as well as words from those who came before me at NSF (thank you to Dr. Jeff Trinkle, former NSF Program Director, for many of the inserts below)
How to Become a Successful NSF PI? Some Inside Insights from Former Program Directors
Disclaimer -Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in these slides are those of the authors/presenters and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
Is it a fundable research idea?
Whether you have a firm idea of the research direction you want to pursue or not, following the steps below will help you home in on a competitive research direction.
Some keys to preparing a competitive proposal ...
Some advice from others
Preparing for a productive meeting with a Program Director:
(1) What is the problem?
(2) Why is it important to solve?
(3) Which parts of the problem will you solve and how?
(4) What is the intellectual merit of your proposal?
(5) How does this fit Cyber Human Systems (CHS) program?
How to Approach your National Science Foundation Program Director
1. If you don’t hear back on your first contact (phone or email), what is the best next step and where is the line between persistence and annoyance?
It is generally suggested that you start with an e-mail, because many PDs are out of the office for various reasons (meetings, panels, conferences, independent research activities, etc.). PDs are very busy so give them a week to respond, many will respond within a day or two. If the PD does not respond after 2x, then try to contact another PD within that program. It is recommended that you contact one PD in the program, instead of all PDs in that program. By sending a note to all it often times because unclear who should respond, risking the chance of it falling deeper in their mailbox, resulting in no response at all.
2. How much about your grant idea should you share when reaching out via email? 1 page, 2 pages? What should that info include?
Because time is of essence most PDs will only want a one-page summary, definitely no more than two pages. They always work to treat everyone fairly, so what they do for they must do for everyone. This is why they cannot read an entire 15-page proposal to provide feedback, there is not enough time in doing so for everyone. In your project summary, you should strive to answer these questions clearly and concisely: (1) What is the problem? (2) Why is it important to solve? (3) Which parts of the problem will you solve? (4) How will those problems be attacked? (5) How does this fit the particular program of interest? Pertaining to question #5, this tells the PD whether you have done the homework necessary to determine the proper fit for the idea. Or it may help them in providing “fit” advice. That is many times a proposer may think their idea fits a certain program, division, or directorate but often times it doesn’t and this is where the PD can help. Work with mentors who have been successful on proposals to NSF, seek out those who will give you honest and constructive feedback, rather than those who simply say “looks great, submit”. Critical feedback from more experienced folks is critical to success at NSF!
3. What are some of the best questions you have had/asked? Don’t be shy to bring forth “crazy” ideas; NSF is the place for such ideas!
NSF is one of the only agencies that funds work on potentially “crazy” ideas that may lead to transformative ideas in terms of intellectual merit and broader impacts.
4. Are there any questions you would recommend NOT asking?
Gather what your interests and passions are and write for that. Don’t ask the PD what they would like funded and what their interests are in and write to that. PDs, for the most part, were once/are academics so they understand the granting process, funding students, publishing students, tenure process, etc. They have a very good understanding of the university system and how to navigate that path. PDs encourage communication, there will never be any negative consequences to speaking with PD, e.g. won’t hurt your chances for future funding etc. Feel comfortable asking them questions. Seek them out early in the grant writing process to ensure your idea is a good fit and if not where a good fit may be.
5. What is the goal of the program officer in these conversations? What is the goal of the faculty member?
The goal of the faculty member is to of course secure funding to fund your research, students, obtain tenure so forth and so on. The NSF PD knows this but what they want to hear is what it is that you are excited and passionate about in a clear and concise manner. PDs may not have expertise in your area, most likely they will not, so you will need to be generalists to some degree when conveying your idea. The PDs role is to encourage you to submit assuming it’s a good fit for their program or to help you navigate where may be the better home. As a proposer realize that you will be declined, the funding rate within my own program is from ~6% (CHS: LARGE) ~25% (CHS:CRII) depending on the solicitation. As a new faculty member write your PD and ask them if you can serve on a panel (send an e-mail with your CV attached) so that you can understand the review process. It is OK if you have never served or have not been successful via NSF funding mechanisms.
(Thank you to PDs in Cyber-Human Systems Program!)