Research Spotlight: Tina Smith-Bonahue

Q & A with Tina Smith-Bonahue, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the School of Special Education, School Psychology, and Early Childhood Studies

What basic questions does your research seek to answer?

How can professionals working in early childhood settings use authentic, culturally relevant strategies to improve outcomes for vulnerable children? My research seeks to address this question through two lines of inquiry.  One line examines how teachers and other care providers can structure authentic and play-based interactions that promote social and emotional competence and critical thinking in young children. The second line of research explores how teachers and other early childhood professionals can ensure that their work is culturally relevant through meaningful partnerships with families.

What makes your work interesting?

In the past 20 years or so, researchers, policy makers, and even the general public have become aware of the tremendous potential for early education to have a long lasting impact on high-risk children’s developmental outcomes. With this increased attention, high stakes testing and methods to ensure accountability are being applied to preschools, changing and challenging the way we think about early childhood. Similarly, state-funded preschool programs have a mandate to focus on pre-academic and school readiness skills. As a result, studies suggest that time for play is on the decline in preschool classrooms. Since years of scholarship also tell us that play is essential for children’s well-being, finding ways to ensure that play has a place in preschool classrooms has become part of my research agenda.

As more and more children, particularly children from under-resourced communities, have the opportunity to participate in structured preschool experiences, ensuring that these environments are culturally relevant and family-friendly becomes a challenge. When teachers engage families effectively as partners in their children’s learning and development, everyone benefits. But for teachers who are overwhelmed by accountability demands and the day-to-day demands that come with caring for young children, engaging families can seem like a daunting task.

What are you currently working on?

Working with colleagues and graduate students here and at another university, I’ve spent the past several years examining how helping in-service teachers make sense of the diversity among the families of the children they serve. We were also interested in identifying professional development strategies that improve teachers’ ability to engage families in meaningful ways in their classrooms. Our next projects extend this work by examining preservice teachers’ beliefs about diverse families and what kinds of pedagogical strategies best prepare them to form true partnerships with the families of the children they will serve. Of course, understanding the perspectives of professionals is only half the equation in school-family partnerships, so I’ve recently begun a project with our local Head Start to gather data from parents to determine which parent engagement strategies work well, and what barriers prevent them from partnering with their children’s teachers.

Another research team and I have been analyzing the literature on play in early childhood for the past 10 years. Based on this analysis, we will explore teachers’ understanding of the role of play in children’s learning and early education. We’ve also just completed a project examining the effectiveness of children’s literature for teaching very young children emotion vocabulary and social problem solving. We hope to learn specific strategies for using authentic literature to promote social and emotional growth in very young children with developmental disabilities.

Important Information on NSF Proposal Types and Automated Compliance Checking

Effective January 30, 2017, the National Science Foundation (NSF) will incorporate two new types of proposals into the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) (NSF-17-1). Also, new and enhanced automated compliance checks on proposals will begin in FastLane that could have an impact on NSF submissions via Grants.gov.

Proposal Submission

The following new types of proposals will be incorporated into the PAPPG on January 30, 2017:

  • Grant Opportunities for Academic Liaison with Industry (GOALI): GOALI is a type of proposal that seeks to stimulate collaboration between academic research institutions and industry. More information about the GOALI type of proposal can be found in PAPPG (NSF 17-1), Chapter II.E.4. GOALI proposals were previously submitted to a solicitation.
  • Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (RAISE): The RAISE proposal type supports bold, interdisciplinary projects. Please see PAPPG (NSF 17-1), Chapter II.E.3 for additional information about the RAISE type of proposal.

Enhanced Automated Compliance Checks

Beginning January 30, 2017, FastLane will run enhanced automated compliance checks across several proposal types and will generate errors or warnings when the submission or deadline validation compliance checks are not met.

Checks are run during “Check Proposal,” “Forward to SPO,” and “Submit Proposal.” The complete list of FastLane automated compliance checks effective January 30, 2017, is available here.

The automated compliance checks will not be conducted on proposals submitted to NSF via Grants.gov. Proposers submitting through Grants.gov should be aware that Grants.gov will allow a proposal to be submitted, even if it does not comply with the compliance checks in effect at the time. If NSF receives a proposal from Grants.gov that is not compliant, it will be returned without review.

We encourage you to share this information with your colleagues. For system-related questions, please contact FastLane User Support at 1-800-673-6188 or fastlane@nsf.gov. Policy-related questions should be directed to policy@nsf.gov.

Memorandum: Final Regulations on Open Licensing Requirements under Department of Education Competitive Grant Programs

On January 13, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) released final regulations on open licensing requirements covering recipients of ED competitive grants. In short, the regulations require, subject to certain exceptions, that ED grantees awarded competitive grant funds openly license to the public copyrightable grant deliverables created with such grant funds. The regulations will shortly be published in the Federal Register and will be effective 60 days after the publication date. The final regulations revise the proposed regulations included in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) issued by ED on November 3, 2015.

The purpose of this memorandum is to summarize the major provisions of the final regulations.


Under existing regulations, title to intellectual property (including copyright) developed with ED competitive grant funds vests in the grantee. At the same time, ED reserves a royalty-free, nonexclusive and irrevocable right to reproduce, publish or otherwise use for Federal purposes any work subject to copyright that was developed, or for which ownership was acquired, under a grant award, and may also authorize others to do so. (This authorization, known as a “Federal purpose license,” gives ED the ability to authorize other entities to use work developed or obtained with ED competitive grant funds.)

As explained in the background section of the pending Federal Register notice, ED developed new regulations after determining that copyrightable works created under its competitive grant programs were not being accessed widely, notwithstanding the Federal purpose license and the dissemination efforts of both ED and individual grantees. According to the final notice, many education stakeholders and other members of the public are unaware of the resources created through ED competitive grant programs and, even when they are aware, these actors have been unsure how to access the resources, what usage rights or permissions are needed to access them, and how to obtain those rights or permissions.

Major Elements of the Regulations

Under the new regulations:

  • A grantee or subgrantee must openly license to the public a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, perpetual and irrevocable license to: (1) access, reproduce, publicly perform, display and distribute any grant deliverable that constitutes copyrightable work and is developed wholly or in part with ED competitive grant funds; (2) prepare derivative works and reproduce, publicly perform, and publicly display those derivative works; and (3) otherwise use the copyrightable work, provided that in all such instances attribution is given to the copyright holder.
  • When a grant deliverable consists of modifications to pre-existing work, the license described above must extend only to those modifications that can be separately identified and only to the extent that open licensing is permitted under the terms of any licenses or other legal restrictions on the use of the pre-existing work.
  • Grantees and subgrantees may select any open licenses that comply with the regulatory requirements, including a license that limits use to noncommercial purposes, so long as they meet certain technical requirements.
  • A grantee’s or subgrantee’s open license must not extend to any copyrightable work incorporated in the grant deliverable that is owned by a party other than the grantee or subgrantee, unless the grantee or subgrantee has acquired the right to provide such a license.
  • The regulations apply to ED competitive grants but do not apply to:
    • Grants that provide funding for general operating expenses;
    • Grants that provide support for individuals (such as through scholarships or fellowships);
    • Grant deliverables that are jointly funded by ED and another Federal agency, if the other agency does not require open licensing under the relevant grant program;
    • Copyrightable works created by a grantee or subgrantee but not with ED grant funds;
    • Peer-reviewed scholarly publications that arise from scientific research funded fully or partially with ED grants;
    • Grantees and subgrantees under the Ready-to-Learn Television program;
    • A grantee or subgrantee that has received a specific exception from ED, for example in a situation where ED determines that a grantee’s dissemination plan would likely result in dissemination at least equal that likely to be achieved through an open license or that compliance would impede a grantee’s ability to form required partnerships under the grant; and,
    • Grantees and subgrantees for which compliance would conflict with or materially undermine the ability to protect or enforce other intellectual property rights or obligations.

Implementation of the Regulations

In the background section of the notice, ED estimates that, after application of the exceptions listed above, the regulations will apply to approximately 60 percent of its competitive grants. Further, in designing competitions that do not fall within the exceptions, ED will consider when to make an exception for a particular grant program and a particular competition. Toward that end, as explained in the background section, ED will consider whether an open licensing agreement would conflict with the statutory purpose of a program and whether the harm caused to the program by implementing the open licensing requirement would outweigh its benefit.

In making those determinations, again as spelled out in the background section, ED will consider such factors as: (1) possible negative effects on the statutory purpose of the program if an open-licensing agreement is applied; (2) possible barriers to the intended benefits of broad dissemination if an agreement is applied (for instance, if the broadest possible dissemination can be achieved only through exclusive private-entity partnerships); (3) the public need for, or benefit from, the opportunity to access or use a copyrightable grant deliverable given the context of a particular program; and (4) other economic considerations, such as an undue hardship on grantees implementing the requirements. In each Notice Inviting Applications for a competitive grant program, ED will specify whether the grants will be subject to or exempt from the regulations.

Finally, the background section of the notice explains that ED intends to take a phased approach to implementing the regulations for new competitive grants in fiscal year (FY) 2017 and then to fully implement them for all applicable programs in FY 2018. This schedule is intended to give ED the opportunity to take such steps as developing administrative procedures for considering requests for exemptions and providing relevant staff training.

UF Request: University-wide Data Survey

Funding agencies are responding to the current increase in data centered and data driven research by requiring that researchers think ahead about the work and data flows in their proposed projects and document this in a data management plan. The data management plan touches infrastructure and expertise. The University of Florida is striving to make researchers more competitive in getting their proposal funded with support to create solid plans with the Libraries and UFIT Research Computing taking the lead. This data survey will assist in understanding how researchers are managing their data.

Participate in and/or preview the University-wide data survey (#IRB201602303): https://ufl.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_b3r9NLjKlL4cVS

The purpose of the university-wide data management assessment research study is to explore how researchers manage data at UF. This research is investigating types of data assets, components of the lifecycle of data, and how the Libraries can better develop services that support the activities faculty implement to manage research data.

We ask that you participate in this survey because you are involved with data. You will not have to answer any question you do not wish to answer. This study aims to build a better understanding of researcher needs regarding support for data that you create, store, and/or manage. Participants will be asked to answer 26 survey questions that will last no more than 13 minutes. You have the option to preview the survey before participation. The survey is accessible online from January 2017 – March 2017. The link to survey is anonymous and unable to track identifying information of respondents.

If you have questions about this research protocol, please contact Plato L. Smith II, Ph.D., Data Management Librarian, at (352) 294-1077 or email at plato.smith@ufl.edu. Questions about your rights as a research participant may be directed to the IRB02 office, University of Florida, Box 112250, Gainesville, FL 32611; (352) 392-0433.

Thank you in advance.

Dropbox for Education Service Expanded

In May, 2016, UFIT launched the Dropbox for Faculty service. The service is now available to all faculty and staff to share files for academic, administrative, and research purposes using the same interface and functionalities everyone is accustomed to using. Visit www.it.ufl.edu/gatorcloud and click on the link at the top of the left column to establish a free UF Dropbox for Education account.

The Dropbox for Education service is approved by the Information Security Office as a file-sharing tool. The Standard for working with Restricted and Sensitive data applies when using Dropbox for Education. Please check with your local IT manager if you have any questions about the appropriateness of using Dropbox with the file(s) you want to share. If no local IT manager is available then contact the UF Computing Help Desk before uploading a file that might contain data classified as Restricted or Sensitive.

At this time, there is no plan to sunset File-Express. More information about the Dropbox for Education service is available on the FAQ page. Anyone needing assistance in establishing their free Dropbox account may contact the Help Desk at 392-352-HELP/4357.

How to Respond to an Email from UFIRST

Here are the steps for a PI to respond to a UFIRST email:

  1. Access the Proposal in UFIRST by clicking on the link in the subject line of the UFIRST Email that you received.
  2. Locate the appropriate Proposal and click on the History Tab at the top of the page to see all actions/correspondence related to the Proposal.
  3. Click on “Send Email” on the left side of the screen under “My Activities.”
  4. Write a response to the UFIRST Email that was sent to you.

Note: Your response will become a permanent part of the UFIRST record.

UFIRST Proposal Commitment Report Now Available

A Proposal Commitment Report is now available through Enterprise Reporting. The report is available via Enterprise Reporting>Access Reporting>Sponsored Program Information>UFIRST Proposals.

This report provides a list of all of the proposal commitments by Proposal Submitting Department or Personnel Home Department. Selections can be limited by personnel, proposal state, or proposal submission date, and is available in both PDF and Excel formats.

More standardized reports will be released as they become available.

Raw UFIRST data is also available via Query Studio and you are free to build queries and reports tailored to your local needs.

A quick how-to guide for Proposal and Award Reports is available online. http://hr.ufl.edu/learn-grow/just-in-time-training/myufl-toolkits/grants/

A full Data Dictionary is also available for assistance in understanding the data elements included in the raw data. http://hr.ufl.edu/learn-grow/just-in-time-training/myufl-toolkits/grants/

A general Cognos FAQ document with some helpful hints for running the reports and troubleshooting of some common issues is available upon request.

Guides for Enterprise Reporting Basics are available http://hr.ufl.edu/learn-grow/just-in-time-training/myufl-toolkits/enterprise-reporting-basics/ as is general information about Enterprise Reporting: http://www.it.ufl.edu/myufl/reporting/.

If you are having issues accessing the reports, please contact the UF Computing Help Desk (392-HELP). For questions about the data or future UFIRST reporting suggestions, please contact Lisa Stroud in the Office of Research.

ORCiD: Improve Your Discoverability in the Research Eco-System

The Smathers Libraries has joined ORCiD (Open Researcher and Contributor ID), a free service providing researchers a way to connect their work to their names. Having a persistent digital identifier throughout an academic career ensures integration of research workflows, including manuscript and grant submissions as well as publications, and allows researchers to link all professional activities.  An ORCiD identifier can be extremely helpful in addressing author disambiguation (different authors with identical names or authors with name changes) and connecting publications to researchers.

The libraries will be hosting ORCiD-related workshops during the Spring 2017 semester. Topics covered will include:

  • Creating, populating, and linking ORCiD ids to publication platforms
  • ORCiD id synchronization with ResearcherID
  • Adding an ORCiD id to your myUFL profile directory

Please contact Scholarly Communications Librarian Christine Fruin with any questions you have about the ORCiD service.

New Fields in ERIC

ERIC has recently added several new fields to its database that will make it easier for researchers to find relevant studies: links to the Institute of Education Sciences (IES),  identifiers, and author identification numbers.

New Links to IES

The first fields that we introduced were designed to connect ERIC users with additional relevant information available on the IES website. Because ERIC sits on a separate website, we found many ERIC users never visited the IES website and did not take advantage of the high-quality content that is available. So, we added several fields to help connect you to places of interest on the IES website. First, we added links from the ERIC website to each publication page on the IES website. These links will help you find related videos and companion products for IES reports, if they are available. Second, for any work funded by an IES grant, we added a link to the grant abstract. This provides information about the overall body of work funded by the grant and any accompanying publications. Lastly, the What Works Clearinghouse has recently redesigned its website, and one aspect of the redesign is that there are now study pages that provide detailed information on specific studies that the Clearinghouse has reviewed. ERIC is linking to these pages so that our users can benefit from the in-depth, user-friendly information provided by the Clearinghouse.

New “Identifiers”

The second set of new fields was designed to clean up the previous “identifiers” field and make them more useful for searchers.

The identifiers field was a hodgepodge of proper nouns that mainly contained information on laws, tests and measures, and geographic locations. We separated this into three new fields—laws, measures, and location. We also standardized the language that we used to make these a controlled vocabulary that users could filter on. This change will enable you to find all work done in Alabama or any work that used the National Assessment of Educational Progress (for example).

New Author Identification Numbers

The third new field adds links to author’s biosketch pages. It can get confusing when several authors have the same name, and when the same author can publishes under different names. For example, the same individual could publish under “John Young,” “John P. Young,” “J.P. Young,” and “Jack Young.” ERIC does not have the ability to determine if these are all the same people, but we were able to add hyperlinks to those authors that have an Orchid ID or a SciENcv page set up. If these numbers are available when we are indexing the record, we will be able to link to authors’ pages so that users can see the other work they have published. IES is encouraging grantees to use SciencCV, so we expect to see a large increase in the use of these fields.

If you have any questions about the new fields, please contact the ERIC help desk.

Awarded Projects for January 2017


College of Education
Awarded Projects
January 2017
Principal Investigator: Michael Bowie (Dean’s Area)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: Florida State University (Subcontract – State of Florida Flow-Through)
Project Title: High-Risk Delinquent and Dependent Child Educational Research Project
Project Period: 7/1/2016 – 6/30/2017
Award Amount: $239,000
Principal Investigator: Lynda Hayes (P.K. Yonge)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: Florida Department of Education
Project Title: Florida’s Best and Brightest Teacher Scholarship Program
Project Period: 7/1/2016 – 6/30/2017
Award Amount: $156,788.93
Principal Investigator: Ashley MacSuga-Gage (SESPECS)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: University of South Florida (Subcontract – Florida Department of Education Flow-Through)
Project Title: Florida Positive Behavioral Support: Multi-Tiered System of Supports (FLPBIS-MTSS)
Project Period: 9/1/2016 – 8/31/2017
Award Amount: $58,066
Principal Investigator: Philip Poekert (Lastinger Center for Learning)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: Lafayette Parish School System
Project Title: Lafayette Parish Believe and Prepare: Early Childhood Cohort 2
Project Period: 10/24/2016 – 4/30/2017
Award Amount: $16,000
Principal Investigator: Philip Poekert (Lastinger Center for Learning)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: Bright From the Start Georgia Department of Early Care & Learning
Project Title: PLC Facilitation Training Year 3 and Executive PLC Training
Project Period:  1/1/2017 – 12/31/2017
Award Amount: $157,197

Submitted Projects for January 2017

College of Education
Submitted Projects
January 2017
Principal Investigator: David Hahn (Mechanical/Aerospace Engineering)
Co-PI: Carole Beal (STL), Nagaraj Arakere (Mechanical/Aerospace Engineering), Bruce Carroll (Mechanical/Aerospace Engineering), Sriram Kalyanaraman (Journalism)
Funding Agency: National Science Foundation
Proposal Title: IUSE/PFE: RED PERSIST – Personalized Engineering Retention Strategies for Inspiring Societal Transformations
Requested Amount: $82,733
Principal Investigator: Mary DePue (SHDOSE)
Co-PI: Dennis Kramer (SHDOSE), Jesse Dallery (Psychology)
Funding Agency: UF Opportunity Fund
Proposal Title: OR-DRPD-ROF2017: Text Message Enhanced Emergency Planning to Reduce Drunk Driving
Requested Amount: $87,530
Principal Investigator: Zhihui Fang (STL)
Co-PI: Angela Kohnen (STL), Holly Lane (SESPECS), Xinguang Chen (Epidemiology), Joy Rodgers (Health Education and Behavior)
Funding Agency: UF Opportunity Fund
Proposal Title: OR-DRPD-ROF2017: Easing Transition from Middle to High School: A Study of the Impact of an Innovative Summer Bridge Program on Underprepared Adolescents’ Academic Performance
Requested Amount: $99,767
Principal Investigator: Lisa Guerrero (SESPECS)
Co-PI: Tina Smith-Bonahue (SESPECS)
Funding Agency: Organization for Autism Research
Proposal Title: Using Stimulus Prompts to Teach Icon Discrimination When Using a Speech-Generating Device
Requested Amount: $1,654
Principal Investigator: Lynda Hayes (P.K. Yonge)
Co-PI: N/A
Funding Agency: Florida Department of Education
Proposal Title: Best and Brightest Teacher Scholarship Program
Requested Amount: $156,788
Principal Investigator: Angela Kohnen (STL)
Co-PI: Zhihui Fang (STL)
Funding Agency: International Literacy Association
Proposal Title: Understanding How Adolescents Find and Make Sense of Health Information from Multiple Sources
Requested Amount: $4,950
Principal Investigator: David Hahn (Mechanical/Aerospace Engineering)
Co-PI: Rose Pringle (STL), Xiang Bi (Food and Resource Economics Department), Michael Scicchitano (Political Science)
Funding Agency: National Science Foundation
Proposal Title: Engaged Student Learning using Statistical Methods for Targeted Intervention for Mechanical Engineering and Aerospace Engineering Students
Requested Amount: $192,858
 Principal Investigator: Joni Splett (SESPECS)
 Co-PI: Stephen Smith (SESPECS), Sarah Lynne Landsman (Department of Family, Youth, and Community Sciences)
 Funding Agency: UF Opportunity Fund
 Proposal Title: OR-DRPD-ROF2017: Reducing Relational Aggression Among Middle School Girls: Investigation of Referral, Professional Development, and Intervention Protocols
 Requested Amount: $98,824