Project 0 Lab x 50th Innovation Grant
Our team initiated an exciting project-based research opportunity for HS students in interdisciplinary areas, reflecting the missions and values of UWCSEA educational philosophy. With a love of mathematics, our on-campus and international team will serve as your research projects' knowledge, logistical, and technological support. Applying as groups of 3 to 5 students with a project proposal, you will brainstorm and actively commit to a one-year exploration journey.
Project 0 will be documented in your College Information Management System (CIMS) record. However, the schedules are flexible according to each group's need. Project 0 is also counted as a non-arts "creativity" stand in the CAS program for IB students.
Science of Social Distancing
Pandemics are becoming more common (Covid-19 and SARS). Social distancing measures need to be optimised and implemented properly to prevent people from dying, especially in indoor environments like restaurants, canteens and classrooms.
We could use geometry to find optimal methods to spread people out to minimise wasted space. We could use game theory to incentivise people to follow rules. We could use computer science to detect when people are breaking the rules.
EEG Helmet For Concussion Detection And Mental Wellness
The project aims to develop a device that can act as a helmet that can receive electroencephalogram (EEG) activity. The helmet would analyse incoming EGG emissions and single out an activity that indicates a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) event has taken place. The EEG processing would occur on a phone that would act as a front end for the analyses and when the helmet believes a concussion has taken place it will send an emergency message to those that you input as your emergency contacts within the list.
The issue that our project aims to solve is the many injuries that are causes of concussions yet do not get addressed as such, according to Brain Line “It is estimated that as many as 3.8 million concussions occur in the USA per year during competitive sports and recreational activities; however, as many as 50% of the concussions may go unreported”. This is a worrying statistic when it comes to the fact that “Children and teens make up approximately 70% of all sports- and recreation-related concussion seen in the emergency department.”.
Documentary of our journey
Resolving Morning Traffic
Studying traffic data to improve traffic jam around campus. For the morning peak hours, we plan to study the amount of traffic coming from each direction, then how to optimize the timing of traffic lights to maximize traffic flow. We will also analyze the net effect of illegal turns to overall traffic flow and the benefits of enforcement, as well as whether it would be beneficial to install a traffic light for the T-junction near the school entrance. For the afternoon peak, we plan to study the amount of traffic at each pickup location, in order to predict the best ways for ushers to direct cars to improve traffic flow.
As students who have been at UWC for a long time, on we've repeatedly experienced the negative effects of traffic around campus. In the mornings, cars circle the entire campus, the line moving very slowly. Then, at the T-junction turning towards the entrance, many cars coming from different directions attempt illegal turns which further slow down the line, and which are also dangerous. This traffic jam causes students to arrive late to class on many occasions, and also affects people living in the neighbourhood. After school, there are jams in some of the pickup locations where students have to wait a long time for their ride, in turn having less time for homework and other productive activities. We hope to make informed improvements to the situation through a data driven study.
Documentary of our journey
We are investigating “Intragroup Dynamics.” This will be tackled from three different perspectives: group structure, dynamics and composition. We have all been in a group where, due to frustration with the lacklustre approach of our groupmates, we wonder: “Was my leadership really essential? Would the group have functioned just as well without me? Could this group have been formed better? Was a randomised group the best choice? Would it have been better to go with the group that I picked?” We hope to answer those questions, and more, with the following experiments. In a group structure, we will investigate the role of leaders (how they designate roles, motivate group members, prevent conflict) and how a group specialises. In group dynamics, we will investigate sub-groups, group fracturing, and cohesion. Finally, in group composition, we will take a step back and investigate how groups can be best formed to optimise overall average outcomes (for example, what role does ability play in the composition of a group, should all those of high-ability be concentrated in a single group, spread out etc).
At UWC, we place a strong emphasis on collaborative learning. A few examples include mentor-time discussion, collaboration and explanation in Maths class, English peer-feedback, music ensembles, and devised drama groups. Compared to the significant role that groups play in our education, we felt that there was a lack of investigation concerning how collaboration may be best carried out. Especially now, when groups are less fluid than ever (COVID bubbles), their composition and methods of collaboration between them becomes ever more important. With our project, we aim to find the group structure that optimises engagement and productivity - in cases with and without an assigned leader. We hope that our results can have a positive and uplifting effect on our community, by increasing productivity and engagement overall. The problem with many studies about social sciences is that they collect data from a specific type of individuals known as the WEIRD people; the candidates are almost always White, Educated, and from Industrialised, Rich and Democratic countries (and disproportionately American psychology undergraduates). For their psychological insights to truly apply to our school, our group strives to understand and experiment with several diverse groups around the school and also in diverse situations. For example, we have plans to investigate the group dynamics of students form Enterprise groups, Drama groups, Maths Competition or even school leadership. Although we understand that UWC students often hit many of the WEIRD criteria (educated, industrialised etc.), we feel that our research could be a datapoint that addresses the lack of representation of different ethnicities in psychological studies. This, unlike the majority of past research, would allow for our results to be more widely applicable and unbiased.
Documentary of our journey
Singapore is a country with very limited land space and heavily depends on other countries for food sources which can be detrimental in the case of a global crisis. As Singapore is starting its progression towards self-sufficiency, this leads to a question, how can we optimise the limited space in Singapore to maximise the output of yield from vertical farming? Linking this to a global scale, traditional farming has been proven to incur more financial costs and be more harmful to the environment compared to vertical farming. We hope by further researching this topic, we can kickstart a paradigm shift within the farming industry, or at the very least, help people develop and expand on the existing ideas.
We believe that vertical farming in Singapore is an important topic for several reasons. In a world where infrastructural development is prioritized over agricultural sustainability in most urban settings, providing enough space and food for our ever-growing population has become an increasingly pressing issue. Because fields and greenhouses occupy spatial resources and land, pursuing sustainable vertical gardening in countries with a relatively small land area such as Singapore could not only enhance local agriculture, significantly reducing costs in importing foodstuffs, but also reduce the proportion of food reliant on the external climate, making farming even more efficient to satisfy growing consumer demand. We are fully aware that not all species of plants are suitable for vertical gardening, especially those requiring high maintenance such as cauliflower and melons. However, as crops grown in vertical farms are unaffected by the monsoon season, farmers may be able to increase the diversity of plants grown in Singapore, enhancing the local farming industry. Overall, investigating how to feasibly expand vertical gardening and farming in Singapore poses a multitude of benefits towards the sustainability of the local economy and infrastructure. Therefore, it is a significant aspect of urban development that should be considered when planning the country’s future, for the betterment of the Singaporean population. Even if we are unable to make a shift in Singaporean society, we believe that we can optimise our school's existing vertical farming and inspire UWCs across the globe to do the same.
Documentary of our journey