$250K Army Grant Awarded to ASU Psychology Dept.

News Date
smith calvin Psyh grant from Army 2022.jpg

Pictured above is Dr. Calvin Smith, assistant professor of psychology at ASU.

Army Awards $250K to ASU Psychology Department to Establish Research Lab 

By Kenneth Mullinax/ASU

The United States Army has awarded a $250,000 grant to Alabama State University's Department of Psychology, which is located within the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. The funding will be used to acquire advanced equipment to enhance the quality of research and research-related education at ASU with Dr. Calvin Smith, assistant professor of psychology, serving as the project's principal investigator.   

The proposal, submitted to the Army Research Office by Smith, is titled “Creating a Statistical Training and Research (STAR) Laboratory for the Behavioral Sciences. 

"The project will establish a state-of-the-art, modern research and training center that will be managed, operated, and supervised by the University's Department of Psychology," Smith said. "The STAR Initiative includes the development of a statistical and data analytics center on the ASU campus to enhance the teaching and learning of statistics in the behavioral science areas; enhancing our behavioral science career preparation (especially psychological careers) by introducing data analytics and statistical analyses into the classroom; increasing fundamental knowledge and understanding in the field of statistics and behavior-related data science; and providing a center to conduct data analyses."  


Smith said ASU will receive several benefits from the $250,000 award.  

"The STAR program will function as an academic training facility and research data center with hundreds of students within the ASU Department of Psychology alone taking  statistics courses in the lab and having a hands-on data analytic experience," stated Smith. "ASU's lab will establish a dedicated computing center for the Psychology department that will provide technological support to academic courses and experimental activities. Furthermore, to support the research enterprise at the institution, our faculty needs a center to analyze their data and in order for our research program to be competitive, we must have the essential equipment to analyze data with this grant providing a mechanism for ASU to secure the necessary equipment." 


The grant-funded research will also benefit students directly by providing them with a modern state-of-the-art academic laboratory that will help them in learning statistics in the behavioral sciences.   

"The teaching of statistics in the contemporary classroom should incorporate the use of technology and statistical software packages as much as possible," Smith shared. "In addition, as we encourage more students to participate in research, the laboratory provides the tools necessary to conduct data analysis.  Also for those students who wish to pursue graduate education, this will prepare them to become producers of research and critical thinkers. For others, it will prepare them for careers that rely on evidence-based approaches to problem-solving." 

News media contact: Kenneth Mullinax, 334-229-4104.