With support from University of Florida President Ben Sasse’s strategic funding initiative, two projects are taking shape in the College of Education: one to accelerate undergraduate research and another to transform mathematics education in Florida.  

The SALT-Math: Scalable AI-Augmented Learning by Teaching for Math Education project (which received $930,000 over three years), aims to revolutionize K-12 mathematics learning in Florida and beyond by implementing a learning-by-teaching framework that uses a large language model to flip students’ roles as teachers to AI agents (resulting in enhanced student outcomes). 

UF Students as Research Scholars (STARS): Illuminating Pathways for Undergraduate Research and Innovation received $330,000 over three years to pair undergraduates with faculty for research opportunities. The objective of this project is to increase the number of University Scholars Program applicants, grow the participation in the College of Education Research Symposium, support graduate assistantships, and reward excellence in faculty mentorship of undergraduate researchers.

“The College of the Education is changing the way we teach and learn in Florida, and this initiative is a prime example of that,” Sasse said. “Through the use of AI and large language models, this program will help revolutionize K-12 math learning throughout the state.”

“We need to celebrate and encourage faculty mentorship of undergraduate researchers, and UF STARS champions that work,” Sasse said. “This initiative will introduce more undergrads to enriching research opportunities and help them use their ideas to change the world.”