Advanced Technological Education .

Welcome to the ATE Central Connection! Published the first Tuesday of each month, the ATE Central Connection is meant to disseminate information to and about ATE centers and projects, providing you with up-to-date ATE news, events, reminders, as well as highlighting new centers, projects, and resources. In addition, we will also highlight an educational topic with complementary resources found within ATE Central to help illustrate how ATE resources can be used in the classroom.

We want the ATE Central Connection to be a valuable tool; please e-mail with any suggestions about how to make the ATE Central Connection more useful for you or to suggest any information you would like to see in an upcoming issue.

In This Issue

Featured Resources: Information and Security Technologies - Geospatial Technologies

From GeoTech Center:

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Deep Learning, and Internet of Things Concept Module

This video, provided by the GeoTech Center, is a concept module that reviews the development of artificial intelligence and how it is used in applications and tools for geospatial technology. The module also defines and reviews machine learning, deep learning, and the Internet of Things and discusses the following topics:

  • A historical perspective on what led to the development of the tools,
  • How the tools are currently used in different applications, and
  • Examples of how analysis tools based on these topics are used in geospatial technology.

The module also "encourage[s] more in-depth study of the topics by providing links to additional resources on slides at the end of the presentation." This video runs 23:23 minutes in length.

From the National Center for Autonomous Technologies (NCAT):

DRONETECH Educator Workshop: STEM Drones Take Flight - STEM Drone Programs on a Shoestring Budget

This video, provided by Northland Community and Technical College, is a recording of the STEM Drones on a Shoestring Budget session at the 2020 Drones Take Flight workshop. "In this session, DRONETECH Director Tom Biller gives an overview of funding sources, skills you can highlight, curriculum resources, and how to integrate them into [a] program." This video recording runs 25:18 minutes in length. Other recorded sessions and workshop materials are available to view separately.

From the Unmanned Aircraft System Operations Technician Education Program (UASTEP):

Creating Digital Height Model with Drone and Point Cloud Data

In this 3-page activity, provided by the Unmanned Aircraft System operations Technician Education Program (UASTEP), students work with point cloud data gathered by drones and processed with photogrammetry techniques. In addition, students explore point cloud data provided by the U.S. Geological Survey's conventional airborne LiDAR sensors. During this activity students will learn to use the ArcGIS Pro software package to analyze drone-based data and airborne LiDAR data in order to create a digital height model and approximate building heights. A PDF activity and GIS data files are included.

Community Connection

Resources for Accessible Remote Education

The ATE community has risen to the challenge of remote and multimodal instruction during the last two semesters. An important aspect of teaching in general, and remote teaching in particular, is creating and providing learning materials that are accessible to all students. As many educators begin preparing for spring instruction, the following resources may be helpful for making remote instruction more widely accessible:

Make the most of Open Educational Resources (OER) with CCCOER’s OER Tutorials.

As the world adapted to increased online learning this year, the Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources (CCCOER) was at the forefront of the transition with their five-week webinar program for open educational resources beginners. Designed for instructors and support staff, the program tackles best practices "for student-centered instruction in fully online courses or face-to-face courses, augmented with online components," creative commons basics, and how to select trustworthy and accessible classroom resources, among other key topics. The CCCOER website hosts recordings, slides, and resources from each installment of the OER Tutorials series. In particular, the OER: Vetting tutorial provides information on vetting digital resources for accessibility and the principles of Universal Design for Learning. A plethora of additional open educational resources can be found on other sections of the CCCOER's website.

Ensure instructional videos are designed for all with “The Accessible Filmmaking Guide.”

Designed for filmmakers and other industry professionals, "The Accessible Filmmaking Guide" uses research-based approaches to ensure that both aesthetics and accessibility are at the forefront of filmmaking processes. This six-part pamphlet discusses various methods to achieve "audiovisual translation and accessibility," in all stages of the filmmaking process, delivering a clear message: "Everybody benefits from accessible filmmaking." Educators will find sections on creating subtitles, adding audio description of images, and sign language, among other helpful hints.

Teach STEM accessibly with NSTA: Science for Students with Disabilities.

Provided by the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA), this resource offers a wealth of information, teaching strategies, and links to additional resources, all aimed at helping science educators work more effectively with students with disabilities. These resources are helpfully organized into Physical Disabilities and Cognitive Disabilities, with an additional category for General accessibility information. Each category is subdivided into pages focused on more specific topics, such as Visual Impairments and Autism. Each page begins with some general information about its topic followed by specific strategies that educators can adopt to make their teaching more inclusive of students with that type of disability.

Serve hearing-impared students with DeafTEC: Teaching & Learning.

ATE community member DeafTEC created this Teaching & Learning hub to ensure that classrooms are accessible for all students. The site provides information on many topics and projects, including resources for employers, information on STEM careers, and sections dedicated to writing and math. Educators teaching remotely may enjoy the Online Teaching and Learning section, which links to accessibility guides for virtual learning environments. Similarly, the Captioning Media section contains some basic information on captioning materials to ensure accessibility. Educators will also want to check out the Best Practices for Teaching section, which provides tips on topics ranging from creating a welcoming environment on the first day of school to making appropriate testing accommodations.

ATE Success Tips: Websites

ATE Central's Microsite Service

Websites are an essential part of outreach, but assembling one from scratch and keeping up with maintenance can be time consuming. Current ATE grantees searching for an easier way to maintain their web presence may want to check out ATE Central's Microsite Service, which provides ATE projects and centers with a free tool for quick, easy website construction.

This service allows ATE grant-recipient projects and centers to share documents, publish curriculum materials, announce events and publications, and disseminate the innovative products of your grant. Microsites can be customized with photos, graphics, and by adding multiple pages, to give your project or center's site a unique, dynamic feel. Plus, microsites help with the archiving process by making your materials readily available to the ATE Central team when the time comes to submit your work.

If you have questions about microsites, or would like a microsite for your project or center, just drop us a note at

Did You Know?

A study from the Brookings Institution reveals that on average around 30% of veterans enrolled in two-year programs between 2008 and 2016, compared to an average of approximately 60% enrolling in four-year programs.

Using Army Administrative data, the author explores “demographic differences in which veterans use the GI Bill and the types of institutions receiving GI Bill dollars.” The study is composed of veteran cohorts leaving service each year between 2008 to 2016, a window of analysis corresponding to availability of the Post 9/11 GI Bill (PGIB).

The paper also explores trends related to race and gender, among other factors, finding that women and minority veterans are more likely to use PGIB funding to attend college. For example, “at the peak around 2012, more than 60% of female veterans used their GI Bill compared to around 53% of male students.”

To learn more about veteran enrollment patterns, read the full Brookings Institution report, Where have all the GI Bill dollars gone? Veteran usage and expenditure of the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Select STEM Education Resources

A few online STEM resources from outside of ATE, that you may find of interest:

Teacher Advisor

Teacher Advisor uses its artificial intelligence technology to connect educators with curated content from open access platforms such as EngageNY, CPALMS (Florida), and North Carolina Department of Instruction, among others. The award-winning platform is designed for K-8 math teachers. Each grade level has its own page, which is located under the Grades tab at the top of the site. Visitors can browse by category (standards, lessons, activities, and strategies) or use the query bar to search for a specific topic. While a plethora of materials are available, the platform's advanced technology helps tailor results to each user's needs. For example, a search for "fractions" reveals more than 40 lesson plans. But, the Watson AI technology, "trained by math experts to understand elementary math concepts and certain modes of engagement within the elementary classroom," flags the top recommendations. Teacher Advisor is supported by IBM philanthropic resources and the Ford, Carnegie, and Stavros Niarchos foundations. While it is currently only available to users in the United States, the platform is looking to expand internationally soon.

Digital Atlas of Ancient Life

The Digital Atlas of Ancient Life, a project of the Paleontological Research Institution based in Ithaca, New York, is elevating fossil exploration. The project serves as "a free resource to help individuals identify and better understand fossil species from particular regions and time intervals." Users can view the four existing Digital Atlases on the Home page (under Regional Field Guides to Fossils) or by clicking on the Field Guides tab. Users who prefer accessing the content on a smartphone will delight in the Digital Atlas app. More information, including how to download the app, is found under the Apps tab. These atlases are far from the only tools available on the site. Educators of all levels will want to check out the Teaching Resources page (found under Teach), which provides lessons for elementary, middle school, and university students. Plus, educators looking to simulate traditional lab environments in a virtual setting will want to check out the Virtual Collection. Here, users will find "interactive 3D models of fossil specimens," accompanied by a user guide for easy implementation. Finally, expert and novice paleontological scholars will find a wealth of resources under the Digital Encyclopedia tab, which acts as "an open access 'textbook' about fossils and the history of life on Earth." The site is frequently updated, and users can stay informed of new additions on the Updates page.

The Coding Train

Go "full STEAM" ahead aboard The Coding Train. This YouTube channel, hosted by Daniel Shiffman, introduces viewers to coding programs and fundamentals. The videos (which vary greatly in length) are informative, easy-to-follow, and fun, providing a perfect way to get students excited about the world of STEM. Plus, the multimedia format makes for a seamless implementation into remote learning. Teachers may want to use one of the beginner level playlists as the foundation for a week-long coding unit. Check out "Learning Processing: A Beginner's Guide to Programming Images, Animation, and Interaction," seven videos on the "core principles of computer programming," as a possibility. Shiffman also occasionally welcomes "guest conductors" aboard the train to share their expertise (with an emphasis on amplifying underrepresented voices in the tech field). The channel has gained more than one million followers since its launch in 2006, which further illustrates its magnetic impact on the STEM community.

Do you have some great STEM resources you'd like to share with ATE Central? Email us with your ideas at

ATE Events

Upcoming Events
Gen Making the Most of Your Evaluation: How to Use Evaluation Findings to Benefit Your Project Online
Eng Impact Engineered 2020 Online
Bio/Chem Biomanufacturing Workshop 1 Online
Info National K12 Cybersecurity Education Conference Online
Eng ADAS to Automated Driving Digital Summit Online
Mfg Virtual Smart Manufacturing Workshop Online
Eng Consumer Electronics Show Online
Nano Novel Two-dimensional (2D) Materials and Devices for Biomimetic Sensing Online

For more events, please visit the ATE Central Events page or, if you have any upcoming events that you would like posted on ATE Central or in the ATE Central Connection, please submit them online.

To add a continuously-updated list of ATE and STEM education events to your website, use the ATE Event Widget.

News & Reminders

ATE Central Social Media Directory

Looking to jump-start your project’s or center’s outreach efforts? Take some inspiration from others in the ATE community!

The ATE Central Social Media Directory offers an online compilation of all the ATE projects and centers who have social media profiles, as well as some ATE partners and collaborators. This resource provides an easy way to learn best social media practices, forge professional connections, and stay in touch with the ATE community.

For additional guidance on outreach and building a social media presence, check out the ATE Outreach Kit.

Mentor-Connect Coffee Breaks

A new Mentor-Connect resource for prospective grantees is now available. These short tidbits of guidance and advice are called “Coffee Breaks.”

Mentor Connect Coffee Breaks provide quick answers to frequently asked questions that arise while working on and preparing to submit an NSF ATE proposal. Tips for project management are included, too, such as preparing reports for NSF. Each presentation is less than 10 minutes and addresses a specific topic or question you may have. Coffee Break advice is available in the Mentor-Connect Library,

Under Find A Resource, select Webinars, then type “Coffee Break” in the search function at the top of the page.

Apply to Participate in Pilot Implementation of EvaluateUR-CURE

EvaluateUR-CURE, a method for evaluating course-based undergraduate research experiences (CUREs), is currently in development and the next round of pilot testing is set for the 2021-2022 academic year. Pilot testing of E-CURE is open to all faculty. Faculty teaching courses with research experiences (CUREs) at community colleges are especially encouraged to apply.

In common with EvaluateUR, EvaluateUR-CURE has about a dozen student outcome categories, each defined by several outcome components. In order to assess student progress, each component is scored both by the student researcher and his or her faculty mentor using a five-point scale and accompanying rubric.

Beginning on December 8, 2020, applications will be open. Selections will be made for the 2021-2022 academic year. Applications received after this date will be considered only if available sites are open. The organizers anticipate identifying up to 10 sites for the pilot. A modest stipend is provided for participating in the pilot and providing feedback. This project is funded by NSF ATE #1836033.

ATE PI 2020 Conference Resources Available Until June, 2021

The deadline to access this year's ATE PI Conference materials has been extended! All session materials, recordings, and ATE Connects submissions are available for on-demand viewing on demand on the conference platform until June 1, 2021.

If materials for a session were provided, they are linked directly below the session abstract (as well as are available in the Materials box next to the chat window for the Concurrent, Spotlight, and Demonstration sessions).

ATE Connects materials will also remain available on-demand. PDF handouts in this section are downloadable from the site. To download, click on the three dots in the top right of the Adobe frame for the handout, and then click download.

Electronic Versions of the ATE Impacts 2020-2021 Book Now Available

Interactive flipbook and electronic (PDF) versions of the ATE Impacts book are available for viewing and download on the ATE Impacts website.

Feel free to distribute copies of the virtual ATE Impacts book to campus colleagues, to your industry partners, or to other stakeholders.

Printing and distribution of the physical book have been delayed because of COVID-19, but as soon as most ATE institutions are able to receive shipments again, printing will move ahead.

Survey: Project Vision Seeks Respondents with Two-Year College Grant Funding Expertise

Project Vision, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program, is seeking input to better understand how faculty and administrators are encouraged and incentivized to pursue grant funding opportunities, as seen from the perspectives of faculty, administrators, presidents, and boards of trustees at community colleges. The survey should take no more than 10 minutes. Please complete the Project Vision survey if you are interested in contributing to the knowledge base in this area.

Project Vision is a collaborative initiative with community colleges that enables the nation's two-year institutions to grow National Science Foundation (NSF) Advanced Technological Education (ATE) funded STEM grant capabilities.

New Student Success Story Videos in the Works

As part of ATE Central's most recent funding we are looking to create a second round of our Student Success Story videos. There will be fifteen new videos in this series and we are actively looking for a diverse set of ATE students with engaging stories and successes to feature.

Do you have a student who you think might fit the bill? Fill out this short survey to tell us about them! Vox Television will be producing these new videos for the community; production will begin in late fall and continue over the next two years.

We look forward to working with you on this exciting project and featuring these and other videos from the whole community on the ATE Central portal. Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions about the video series or our other tools and services.

Would you like copies of the ATE Impacts book?

Book orders and general inquiries about ATE Impacts 2018-2019: Twenty-Five Years of Advancing Technician Education can be emailed to

Archiving your deliverables with ATE Central is now easier than ever!

Upload your curriculum, professional development materials, or other deliverables created with ATE funding directly to the ATE Central resource portal via the new archive submission form.

Can CWIS software help support your project goals?

CWIS is open source software, created with NSF funding, that can help your project or center showcase resources online. It's free and very easy to use. The latest version (CWIS 4.1.1) was released on and is available for download on the Scout site. Please email if you have any questions or would like a quick tour of its features!

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