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Innovation @ ITS

At Information Technology Services, innovation drives our pursuit to foster and support the academic mission of the University. The innovative projects that our team is pursuing at the moment support the tactical objectives of the University Strategic Plan, the ITS Strategic Plan, Quarter to Semester Conversion and the Graduation Initiative 2025. Tactical projects then become operationalized to create room for ongoing innovation.

The following are the strategic/innovative projects that the ITS Team is pursuing in collaboration with the Campus Community:

Infrastructure to Support Faculty Led Research

The Campus recently partnered with the Pacific Research Platform (PRP), a science-driven high-capacity data-centric “freeway system” on a large regional scale. The CSUSB ITS Division recently established a Data Transfer Node for the University’s network to connect to resources on the PRP. Through this partnership and infrastructure on Campus, CSUSB will be able to accommodate high performance and high throughput computing from several grant funded programs in Physics, Chemistry, Geology, Cyber Security and Water Resources Institute. We are currently working with faculty researchers on a pilot mode to test the infrastructure and hope to roll it out to the greater faculty community in the fall.

California State University San Bernardino is one of the eight CSU Campuses that will be upgraded to a 100 Gig link to California Research and Education Network (CalREN) operated by CENIC. Currently the Campus has two 10 Gig links. One of the reasons CSUSB was chosen for this upgrade was its focus on supporting faculty led research.

If you are interested in learning more about this initiative, please contact one of our team members below:

Contact: Kurt Collins, Mihaela Popescu, James MacDonnell or Dung Vu

University Analytics

The Information Technology Services Team and the Institutional Research Team partnered to form the UAnalytics team for the discovery, innovation, communication and strategy for the diffusion of institutional intelligence across the different campus constituents for data driven decision making. The team is refining the Coyote Pulse Institutional Data Warehouse to aggregate and consolidate information from different institutional sources to create a single pane view for faculty and professional advisors as they interact with students.

If you are interested in learning more about this initiative, please contact one of our team members below:

Contact: Lenora Rodgers or Anthony De La Loza

AI First/Mobile First Development of the Student Success Ecosystem

The new MyCoyote portal and mobile application will tie all the student success systems on Campus into a well-organized and intuitive interface that is user friendly, functional and powered by artificial intelligence.

Whether a student is looking for advising resources, academic pathways specific to their academic goals, financial aid or any other University information, the AI ChatBOT will lead them to the right place and provide accurate information without them having to search where to find information.

Contact: Michael Casadonte

Immersive Technologies Projects

Immersive technologies are new media that recreate the real world either by placing users into completely digital environments (virtual reality, 360-degree video) or by superimposing digital objects over the perceived physical reality (augmented reality, mixed reality). These technologies achieve immersion because: (a) users are offered high fidelity simulations through multiple sensory modalities; (b) users’ virtual body actions are finely mapped onto their real, physical bodies; (c) users experience a sense of being located within a perceived plausible space and therefore feel mentally and physically removed from the external world.

ITS, Academic Technologies & Innovation, partners with faculty to develop custom-produced immersive instructional content using augmented or virtual reality. Our team includes: student programmers under the supervision of Dr. Yunfei Hou (Computer Sciences); graphical design by Prof. Kurt Collins and his students (Art); sound design by Prof. Scott Vance and his students (Music); as well as technology solutions by the ATI team under the supervision of multimedia specialist James Trotter.

Contact: Mihaela Popescu

Adaptive Learning

Adaptive learning refers to a method of instruction that employs technologies which modify course activities (content, sequence or assessments) in real time in response to student performance. The instructional designer team with Academic Technologies & Innovation has expertise with Smart Sparrow, a platform for developing adaptive learning algorithms for the design of personalized lessons. Under the direction of Jonathan Brooks, the team is able to help faculty develop adaptive lesson plans that rely on (a) remedial solutions which activate additional content when a student does not meet a pre-defined baseline performance level in the course; or (b) personalized learning pathways that adapt to a student’s level.

Contact: Mihaela Popescu

Foster and Support the Growth and Expansion of Online and Hybrid Programs and Courses

In order to provide better access to students and to allow them to graduate on time, CSUSB is interested in growing and expanding online and hybrid course offerings. Growth in online and hybrid courses will also allow students in our Palm Desert Campus to get access to courses that are not offered at that Campus. The ITS, Academic Technologies and Innovation Team is partnering with the Teaching Resources Center to offer an E-Learning Academy to provide faculty the training and resources necessary to offer quality and accessible online courses. The E-Learning Academy will focus on the development of online and hybrid courses to address bottleneck courses, CSU CourseMatch program and access to students at the Palm Desert Campus.

Contact: Mihaela Popescu

Affordable Learning Initiative

CSU's Affordable Learning Solutions enables faculty to choose and provide more affordable, quality educational content for their students. By reducing CSU student course material expenses, more students acquire the course materials they need to succeed and benefit from their CSU learning experience. Now CSU faculty and students have greater access to quality free and lower cost learning materials through a variety of AL$ programs and partnerships.

CSUSB is in the process of leveraging Senate Bill 1359 to expand the use of free and reduced cost materials for students.

Contact: Bibiana Diaz

Process Automation Projects

The University Strategic Plan called for the automation of twenty-five University wide processes in five years. Over the past three years, we have worked with different departments to automate several processes including the International Travel Authorization Form, the Computerized Information Access form, the delegation of authority form, faculty grade change form and the curriculum approval process. 

We are currently working with the Financial Aid Office and the Office of the Registrar and have identified ten processes in each of those areas to automate. The first one to go live will be the Graduation Check application process, which will go live in April.

We are continuing to look at different processes and systems that can automate these processes. We are looking at Laserfiche systems as a pilot to help us automate several processes at the University.

Contact: Michael Casadonte

Cloud Migration Roadmap

We have adopted a Cloud First strategy in that every greenfield application will be a SaaS or Iaas. We are working with internal teams and the Chancellor’s Office to identify brownfield applications that can be moved to the Cloud to improve efficiency and reduce fixed operating costs. The ECS team will be spent a day with Gartner Consulting in testing the Cloud Decision framework that Gartner will be proposing to the CSU. The goal is to have a five year Cloud migration roadmap by June 30th, 2018.

Contact: Gerard Au

Tech Zones

We are working closely with the ASI and other student organizations to identify and implement tech zones across Campus. These tech zones will serve as technology hubs in which students can experiment with latest technologies such as Amazon Echo, Google Home, One-button studio, Light board, VR and AR platforms.

Contact: Michael Chen and Felix Zuniga

Cherwell Project

The goal of this project is to develop and Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) solution to elevate the level of customer service that the ITS Team and the distributed technology service units provide the Campus Community. The project will be initially launched as a replacement for the existing Kayako system and will incorporate resource management, asset management and project management in the future phases.

Contact: Brandon Sierra

People First @ ITS

Based on Conversation with ITS Staff in the spring of 2016, the ITS leadership team launched two task forces to improve communication within ITS and to develop career pathways for staff for professional development and career advancement. Staff participated in multiple workshops over the last two years. Last fall we launched Office Vibe, an employee engagement and feedback tool through which we continue to collect thoughts and ideas from employees.

We believe that in order for ITS to continue to innovate and provide world class customer service, we need to put our employees first and give them meaningful opportunities to grow their professional skills and careers. To this end, we will continue to engage with our team members and allow them to help us launch programs and initiatives that will prepare them to achieve their professional aspirations.

Contact: Samuel Sudhakar