Our research aims to improve several key areas related to engineering design, decision making, and education. 

Design

Neurocognition of designers and users

Current

  1. Shealy, T. (PI), Gero, J. (UNC Charlotte) Collaborative Research: Novel neurocognitive assessment of engineering education interventions applied to systems thinking, National Science Foundation, Research in the Formation of Engineers, 2020-2023.

 

Completed

  1. Shealy, T. (PI), Katz, B. RNS 18-11: Driver Response to Dynamic Message Sign Safety Campaign Messages, Virginia Transportation Research Council, 2018-2019.

  2. Shealy, T. (PI), Barrella, E. (James Madison University), Systems versus Linear Thinking: Measuring Cognitive Network Coordination for Tasks about Sustainability, 4-VA, 2017-2018

  3. Shealy, T. (PI), Grohs, J. (Dept. of Engineering Education), Panneton, R. (Dept. of Psychology), Measuring the Engineers’ Brain: Using Cognitive Neuroscience to Better Understand the Formation of Engineering Design and Problem-Solving Skills, Virginia Tech, Institute for Creativity, Arts and Technology, 2016-2017

  4. Shealy, T. (PI), Advancing Construction Hazard Recognition through Neuroscience: Measuring Cognitive Response to Hazards Using Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy and Eye Tracking, Student Engineering Council, 2017

Decision Making 

Cognitive biases - loss aversion, temporal discounting, and sunk cost

Current 

  1. Klotz, L. (University of Virginia, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Architecture), Johnson, E. (Columbia University, School of Business), Weber, E. (Princeton University, Dept. of Psychology) and Shealy, T. (Co-PI). INSPIRE - Intentional defaults for more sustainable infrastructure: Studying interventions to alleviate biases in upstream, multi-stakeholder decisions, National Science Foundation, 2015-2020.

    • Shealy, T. (PI), Non-Academic Research Internships for Graduate Students (INTERN), supplemental funding for INSPIRE - Intentional defaults for more sustainable infrastructure: Studying interventions to alleviate biases in upstream, multi-stakeholder decisions, National Science Foundation, 2019.

    • Shealy, T. (PI) INSPIRE - Intentional defaults for more sustainable infrastructure: Studying interventions to alleviate biases in upstream, multi-stakeholder decisions, National Science Foundation, Research Experience in Undergraduate Research (REU), 2018-2019.

  2. ​Shealy, T. (PI), Skuzinski, T. (Virginia Tech, School of Planning and International Affairs), Collaborative Redevelopment, 4-VA, 2018-2020.

Completed

  1. Shealy, T. (PI), Skuzinski, T. Using vividness to improve and rethink long-term resilience of the built environment, Institute for Society, Culture and the Environment, Virginia Tech, 2018-2020.

  2. Skuzinski, T., Shealy, T. (Co-PI), Panneton, R. Research Experience for Undergraduates in Decision Sciences for Resilient Communities, Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science, 2018.

Engineering Education

Systems thinking and climate change

Current​

  1. Shealy, T. (PI), Gero, J. (UNC Charlotte) Collaborative Research: Novel neurocognitive assessment of engineering education interventions applied to systems thinking, National Science Foundation, Research in the Formation of Engineers, 2020-2023.

  2. Shealy, T. (PI), Godwin, A. (Purdue University, Dept. of Engineering Education), Preparing engineers to address climate change and its implications: modeling impact of college experiences on students’ beliefs and agency, National Science Foundation, Research in the Formation of Engineers,  2016 – 2020.