Active Research Projects

Realizing Improved Patient Care through Human-centered Design for Pediatric mental and behavioral health in the Emergency Department

The care of pediatric patients with mental and behavioral health (MBH) conditions in emergency departments (EDs) is hampered by poorly designed workflows and inadequate resources. This project, supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, aims to develop and implement human-centered work systems in EDs that prioritize the needs of pediatric MBH patients and promote safe, efficient, and effective care. The project team will use a systems engineering approach to analyze workflows, design interventions, and evaluate outcomes.

Collaborators: Dr. Anjali Joseph, Dr. Meera Narasimhan, Dr. Ann Dietrich, Dr. Kevin Taaffe, Dr. David Neyens, Dr. Heidi Zinzow,  and Dr. Veronica Parker

Augmenting Human Cognition with Collaborative Robots

The project, funded by the National Science Foundation, focuses on augmenting human cognition to enhance the safety and efficiency of human-robot interaction in various industries. Its goal is to develop innovative solutions for safer and more efficient collaboration between humans and robots, addressing key challenges related to trust, safety, and usability. The outcome is expected to have a significant impact on the development and adoption of collaborative robotic systems in industrial settings.

Collaborators: Dr. Laura Stanley, Dr. Ranjana Mehta, Dr. Mike Wittie, Dr. Prabhakar Pagilla, and Dr. Debi Switzer

Game-based Virtual Reality-Enabled Advanced Manufacturing Lab

This project, funded by the Office of Naval Research, aims to develop innovative virtual- and augmented-reality systems for advanced manufacturing education and training. A collaborative effort between research groups at Clemson University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and The University of Arizona, this project seeks to create a transformative and modular learning format that incorporates elements of “learning through play” from game-based learning. By doing so, the project seeks to enhance the educational experience for students and professionals in the field of advanced manufacturing. Additionally, this project will establish an online platform to enable rapid and autonomous continuing education, further supporting the needs of the advanced manufacturing community.

Collaborators: Dr. Anand Gramopadhye, Dr. John Ballato, Dr. Eric Klopfer, Dr. Lionel C. Kimerling

Virtual- and Augmented Reality Systems for Robotics-enabled Advanced Manufacturing

This research, funded by the Office of Naval Research, aims to utilize virtual and augmented reality technology to advance the field of robotics-enabled manufacturing. With a budget of $1.8 Million, the project will leverage existing resources, partnerships and federally funded centers to develop these systems with a focus on industry requirements and guidance. The goal of this research is to enhance the capabilities of advanced robotics-enabled manufacturing and improve the overall efficiency and productivity of this field.

Collaborators: Dr. Anand Gramopadhye, Dr. Venkat Krovi, Dr. Laine Mears and Dr. Yue Wang

Completed Projects

EAGER: CHS: Examining Self-Harm and Suicide Contagion Risks of Viral Social Media Challenges on Youth and Young Adults

This project, funded by the National Science Foundation, examined young adults’ exposure to viral self-harm online challenges comprehensively. The goal of this research was to understand the extent of young adults’ engagement in such challenges and the factors that influence their participation. The findings from this project have led to the development of both theoretical and quantitative models that characterize the nature and spread of harmful online challenges on social media. The outcomes of this research have contributed to a better understanding of the potential consequences of such challenges and inform future efforts to prevent their spread.

Collaborators: Dr. Heidi Zinzow, Dr. Meera Narasimhan, Dr. Pamela Wisniewski, Dr. Laura Whitlock and Dr. Krishnasree Achuthan

Enhancing Personalized Learning Using Virtual and Augmented Reality-based Technology Innovations

This funded research by the National Science Foundation aims to explore and advance the integration of virtual technology into educational settings, specifically through the development of novel collaborative networking strategies. The objective is to create virtual collaborative spaces that offer highly accessible and personalized learning environments, both in synchronous and asynchronous settings. The outcome of this project will contribute to the growing body of knowledge in the field of virtual technology and its application in education, and has the potential to revolutionize the way students and educators interact and engage in learning.

Collaborators: Dr. Kristin Frady, Dr. Rebecca Hartley, Dr. Anand Gramopadhye

Human Factors Considerations in the Design and Implementation of Telemedicine-Integrated Ambulance-based Environments for Stroke care

This research project, funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), focused on investigating the impact of ambulance-based telemedicine in stroke care. The study aims to address two main objectives: i) to understand the cognitive, physical, and temporal demands placed on caregiving teams in remote, geographically dispersed locations and ii) to evaluate the potential for user/design errors that can occur in the utilization of information technology systems in high-stress environments. By implementing ambulance-based telemedicine, the goal is to increase the speed and accuracy of stroke consultations and improve the triage process, ultimately reducing the time between first provider contact and definitive therapy.

Collaborators: Dr. Anjali Joseph, Dr. Nathan McNeese, Dr. James McElligott, Dr. Christine Holmstedt and Dr. Suparna Qanungo.

Interfaces for Family Health History Collection

The aim of this research project was to address the underutilization of family health history (FHx) in clinical settings. Despite the significance of FHx in early disease diagnosis and risk management, clinicians frequently face difficulties in collecting a comprehensive FHx due to limited time and expertise. To tackle this issue, the project involved developing AI-enabled virtual conversational agents to facilitate the collection of FHx. The goal was to evaluate the efficacy of using virtual conversational agents as a novel method for collecting FHx and to determine its potential to improve the quality and comprehensiveness of FHx collection in a clinical setting.

Collaborators:  Dr. Brandon Welch

Technology-based interventions to assess the home and community environment to prevent falls in the home and support aging in place

This project, funded by the Collaborative Faculty Research Development Program, seeks to tackle the issue of falls among older adults by addressing the root cause – home safety risks. The project aims to develop a technology-based intervention that can be utilized in doctor’s offices or at home to help older adults assess the safety of their living environment and to identify resources in their community to address any identified safety concerns. The goal of the project is to provide a solution that supports both the healthcare team as well as the older adults and their families in developing and implementing modifications to the built environment to prevent falls and support their care needs. This project is driven by the need to empower older adults to take control of their health and safety, and to make the process of evaluating home safety and making modifications more accessible and convenient.

Collaborators: Dr. Anjali Joseph, Dr. Susan O’Hara, Dr.  Cheryl Dye

Smart Companion Robots for Automotive Assembly

The objective of this project, supported by the Advanced Robotics in Manufacturing Institute, is to assess the feasibility of utilizing a Smart Companion Robot, a sophisticated mobile manipulator robotic system, in the automotive final assembly process. The focus is on improving the efficiency and accuracy of manual manipulation tasks in high-mix assembly environments. The robot aims to provide cognitive assistance by ensuring the delivery of the correct parts and tools at the right time and place, thereby reducing the risk of incorrect parts being assembled and enhancing the overall quality of the process. Additionally, it intends to provide physical assistance by helping in the transportation of medium-heavy parts from subassembly areas, which would reduce worker fatigue and repetitive injuries. This project has the potential to revolutionize the way manual tasks are performed in the automotive assembly industry, and contribute new knowledge to the fields of robotics and advanced manufacturing.

Collaborators: Dr. Venkat Krovi

Telehealth Systems to Support Family Caregivers of Older Adults with Urinary Incontinence

This research project funded by the IMPACT program seeks to address the issue of Urinary Incontinence (UI) among community-dwelling older adults who are dependent on care from their informal caregivers. The primary aim of the study is to develop a web-based, multi-component behavioral intervention designed to enhance the home environment of these older adults by providing education and training to their informal caregivers. The intervention, named Tele-Prompt, will focus on improving the informal caregivers’ knowledge and skills in managing UI. Additionally, the study aims to assess the feasibility and acceptability of the intervention and estimate its impact on the outcomes of the informal caregivers. This study contributes to the field of gerontology by addressing the real-world challenges faced by older adults with UI and their caregivers, and by exploring innovative solutions that can improve the quality of life of both groups.

Collaborators: Dr. Nicole Davis, Dr.  Cheryl Dye

Human Factors Considerations in the Design of Home-based Telemedicine Systems

This study, funded by the South Carolina Telehealth Alliance, aims to explore and evaluate the factors that contribute to the acceptance and use of home-based telemedicine systems. The research aims to examine user perception, attitude, and behavioral intentions towards the use of telemedicine technology in the home environment, and identify the key factors that influence the acceptance of telemedicine systems by users. The outcomes of this research could help inform the design and implementation of home-based telemedicine systems, and address barriers to widespread adoption of telemedicine technology in the home environment. This research has the potential to provide valuable insights into how telemedicine technology can be better integrated into the lives of people and how it can support improved health outcomes.

Collaborators: Dr. James McElligott, Dr. Brandon Welch

Virtual Environments for Risk Assessment

The aim of this research, funded by the American International Group, is to explore the use of virtual reality (VR) technology as a tool for evaluating infrastructure risks in the power generation industry. This project will involve the design, implementation, and evaluation of VR simulations to assess the risk associated with various components of the power generation infrastructure. The outcomes of this research will provide insights into the potential of VR technology for evaluating infrastructure risk and help in identifying potential areas for improvement in power generation safety and security. This project will contribute to the advancement of risk management in the power generation sector and pave the way for future innovation in this field.

Collaborators: Dr. James Martin