Technologies

Education & Training

Most Recent Inventions

App for Stratifying Autism Spectrum Disorders

UW–Madison researchers have developed a software test to differentiate ASD participants into two distinct types of contextual learners. The first group resembles a “Typically Developing” (TD) learning profile, and the second group does not modulate with context, indicating that they are not able to learn the embedded context.

Participants viewed a monitor divided into four quadrants and were asked to search for a visual target, then indicate the quadrant in which the target was located. Unbeknownst to the participants, contextual information about the target location was manipulated across sessions by varying the number of off-targets and the probability of the target being present in that quadrant. Search time as a function of the proportion of informative cues in the target quadrant was used as a measure of contextual learning.
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Single Sweep Whiteboard Eraser

An Alumni from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville has developed a single sweep whiteboard eraser that can be installed and retrofitted to any traditional whiteboard. Spanning the entire height of the board, this eraser can clear all written material in a single pass and in a fraction of the time it takes with a handheld eraser alone. This eraser also has the capability to lift away from the board and relocate to any location while preserving any desired content during the transition. As an example, an instructor can work in a left to right manner, lift the eraser, and return to the beginning to erase the oldest material while still allowing the students time to copy the newly written material. Attached to the eraser is an added holder for markers and an additional holder for a small handheld eraser to fix minor mistakes. This ensures anything the user needs will be nearby as they work across the board. A stage 2 prototype, “1Swipe”, has been developed and tested in a University classroom setting.
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Modified Newton’s Cradle Demonstrating Mechanical Impedance

A Physics professor and inventor at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater has developed a modified Newton’s Cradle that allows the user to visualize and test the concept of mechanical impedance in addition to momentum and energy conservation. The traditional version of Newton’s cradle has a cradle of identical metal spheres. In this modified and improved device, the user is able to interchange these spheres with ones of varying mass and material composition. By allowing the user to strategically align and create a unique cradle, they have the opportunity to visualize mechanical impedance. For example, a sphere with a small mass would have the ability to strike the cradle and lift a sphere of greater mass on the opposite side if the spheres in-between had a gradient of increasing mass themselves. The possibility of changing a sphere at any position in the cradle allows for an exceptionally large number of possible experiments and would overall lead to an enhanced understanding of the aforementioned physics concepts, something a traditional cradle device does not provide for.
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Physics ‘Office Hours’ educational learning platform

A physics education researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay has designed a novel and interactive app-based study aid platform for students in STEM disciplines. The platform’s interface is built around education research into how students conceptualize problems they do not understand. It is a novel tool to help students see why they are struggling with a particular problem, and what might help them solve it, rather than solving the problem for them. The team’s first working prototype, the Physics Office Hours app, has been designed for use in introductory-level college physics. The app is designed to mimic a scenario students might face during ‘office hours’ with a professor: Rather than offering an answer, the instructor guides the students through problems via a series of questions. A user-friendly online interface allows app content to be easily updated and changed over time and as more problem sets become available. In addition, the app architecture can easily be adapted to problem sets in other STEM disciplines and therefore serves as a platform technology.
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Mobile Tools for Autism & Communicative Disorders Therapy

A Researcher at University of Wisconsin Stevens Point has developed a suite of medically secure mobile application tools to instantly communicate, track and analyze behaviors and medical interventions for a variety of communication spectrum disorders, especially focusing on Autism therapies. In addition, this system is designed to increase the ability of organizations to train new therapeutic staff in the field through calculated suggestions from an artificial intelligence engine. The suite of apps consists of 1) a data entry, tracking and analysis tool 2) a video capture, sharing and behavior tagging tool, and 3) an artificial intelligence tool. An online Knowledge Automation Expert System (a type of Artificial Intelligence software) is used to track treatment, look for patterns in said treatment, and provide guidance on the next best steps based on each child’s needs. The applications are media rich and allow parents, therapists, and medical doctors to record, track, and observe actual behavior in real time through interactive charting, video sharing, and video conferencing. The video sharing and conferencing provide a way for therapists in the field to work in real-time with senior therapists remotely, thus increasing the level of training for field staff.

These apps are cross mobile platform compatible (Android, iOS and Blackberry) and have several levels of security ensuring patient record safety. This streamlined system of apps work together to capture all critical data from the medical treatments as well as the behavior therapy treatments and provide analysis tools to track and understand changes in the pattern of behavior and reduce subjective interpretation. The final product simplifies communication among parents, therapists and doctors, as well as providing an easy method for therapeutic organizations to efficiently train their staff in the field through direct access to senior therapists and their experience.
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Most Recent Patents

Field Portable Smartphone Device for Water Quality Monitoring

A University of Wisconsin-Green Bay professor of chemistry has developed a portable, accurate, low cost, smartphone-based analytical device for the field-measurement and geographical mapping of environmentally relevant water quality parameters. In its current embodiment, the device is a colorimeter for measuring absorbance that includes a visible light source with onboard power, imaging filters, a sample cuvette, and a mounting mechanism for attachment to a smartphone or tablet. An accompanying app is used to record camera images of samples and convert them to numerical absorbance data for analysis. The app will be further developed to allow integration with an online ArcGIS platform for uploading and mapping the data.
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Breast Imaging Training and Testing Simulator

A UW–Madison researcher has developed a simulator that helps radiology residents-in-training learn to interpret breast images (mammographic, ultrasound, etc.), assess their knowledge and compare their performance to experts.

The system is preloaded with medical histories and images from known clinical cases. The trainee is asked to recommend recall instructions. His/her responses are tested against the answers of an expert clinician and pathologic correlation. The program reports any divergence between the two.

The program uses actual clinical data and is designed to provide realistic yet demanding simulation. In addition to recall instructions, a trainee may be asked to complete other tasks, such as locating a suspicious lump or predicting whether a biopsy will be required.
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