Established in 1966, UMBC has risen from modest beginnings, with some of our initial external research awards secured in the mid 1990’s. We have grown into a Doctoral University with Higher Research Activity, as designated by the current Carnegie Classification, which places us among the top 220 research universities in the Nation with FY 2018 extramural research expenditures of $76 Million. According to the current NSF’s Higher Education Research and Development (HERD) survey, UMBC is currently ranked #147 in federal research and development expenditures.

We build on the inherent strengths in our vibrant, interdisciplinary and collaborative research culture, with a strong national reputation for integrating undergraduates in mentored research. Our key research themes are well aligned with regional and national priorities – Environment, Health, National Security and Education. Each of these key themes benefits from an inclusive approach, by taking into account social sciences, ethical, public policy and other important considerations to provide a comprehensive solution.

Our research motto “Innovation That Matters” reflects the fact that our faculty and students are particularly focused on translational and applied research areas: we thrive on the opportunity and experience that our work can have direct impact – on the scientific and engineering fields, on our students, and on the communities that we partner with.

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Recent Submissions

  • Towards Making Virtual Human-Robot Interaction a Reality 

    Higgins, Padraig; Kebe, Gaoussou Youssouf; Berlier, Adam; Darvish, Kasra; Engel, Don; Ferraro, Francis; Matuszek, Cynthia (Association for Computing Machinery, 2021)
    For robots deployed in human-centric spaces, natural language promises an intuitive, natural interface. However, obtaining appropriate training data for grounded language in a variety of settings is a significant barrier. ...
  • A Spoken Language Dataset of Descriptions for Speech-Based Grounded Language Learning 

    Kebe, Gaoussou Youssouf; Higgins, Padraig; Jenkins, Patrick; Darvish, Kasra; Sachdeva, Rishabh; Barron, Ryan; Winder, John; Engel, Donald; Raff, Edward; Ferraro, Francis; Matuszek, Cynthia (2021-06-08)
    Grounded language acquisition is a major area of research combining aspects of natural language processing, computer vision, and signal processing, compounded by domain issues requiring sample efficiency and other deployment ...
  • Parsing and disfluency placement 

    Engel, Donald; Charniak, Eugene; Johnson, Mark
    It has been suggested that some forms of speech disfluencies, most notable interjections and parentheticals, tend to occur disproportionally at major clause boundaries [6] and thus might serve to aid parsers in establishing ...
  • De Novo Design of a Single-Chain Diphenylporphyrin Metalloprotein 

    Bender, Gretchen M.; Lehmann, Andreas; Zou, Hongling; Cheng, Hong; Fry, H. Christopher; Engel, Don; Therien, Michael J.; Blasie, J. Kent; Roder, Heinrich; Saven, Jeffrey G.; DeGrado, William F. (ACS Publications, 2007-08-10)
    We describe the computational design of a single-chain four-helix bundle that noncovalently self-assembles with fully synthetic non-natural porphyrin cofactors. With this strategy, both the electronic structure of the ...
  • Learning from human-robot interactions in modeled scenes 

    Murnane, Mark; Breitmeyer, Max; Ferraro, Francis; Matuszek, Cynthia; Engel, Don
    There is increasing interest in using robots in simulation to understand and improve human-robot interaction (HRI). At the same time, the use of simulated settings to gather training data promises to help address a major ...
  • Towards the Automatic Assessment of Student Teamwork 

    Ahuja, Rohan; Khan, Daniyal; Symonette, Danilo; Pan, Shimei; Stacey, Simon; Engel, Don (ACM, 2020-01)
    Teamwork skills are crucial for college students, both at university and afterwards. At many universities, teams are increasingly using discussion platforms such as GroupMe and Slack to work virtually. However, little has ...
  • Mental Model Mapping Method for Cybersecurity 

    Kullman, Kaur; Buchanan, Laurin; Komlodi, Anita; Engel, Don (Springer Nature, 2020-07-10)
    Visualizations can enhance the efficiency of Cyber Defense Analysts, Cyber Defense Incident Responders and Network Operations Specialists (Subject Matter Experts, SME) by providing contextual information for various ...
  • Machine Learning and Student Performance in Teams 

    Ahuja, Rohan; Khan, Daniyal; Tahir, Sara; Wang, Magdalene; Symonette, Danilo; Pan, Shimei; Stacey, Simon; Engel, Don (Springer Nature, 2020-06-30)
    This project applies a variety of machine learning algorithms to the interactions of first year college students using the GroupMe messaging platform to collaborate online on a team project. The project assesses the efficacy ...
  • Presentation and Analysis of a Multimodal Dataset for Grounded LanguageLearning 

    Jenkins, Patrick; Sachdeva, Rishabh; Kebe, Gaoussou Youssouf; Higgins, Padraig; Darvish, Kasra; Raff, Edward; Engel, Don; Winder, John; Ferraro, Francisco; Matuszek, Cynthia (2020-07-09)
    Grounded language acquisition -- learning how language-based interactions refer to the world around them -- is amajor area of research in robotics, NLP, and HCI. In practice the data used for learning consists almost ...
  • Operational and Fiscal Management of Core Facilities: A Survey of Chief Research Officers 

    Carter, Jason R.; Delahanty, Douglas L.; Strasser, Jane E.; Knoedler, Alicia J.; Wilson, Gillian; Davis, Ralph K.; Engel, Don (Society of Research Administrators International, 2019-12-09)
    Sharing research equipment and personnel across investigators and laboratories has a long-standing history within research universities. However, the coordinated management of centralized, shared resources (i.e., core ...
  • A Digital Dashboard for Supporting Online Student Teamwork 

    Ahuja, Rohan; Khan, Daniyal; Symonette, Danilo; desJardins, Marie; Stacey, Simon; Engel, Don (Association for Computing Machinery, 2019-11)
    Teamwork skills are crucial to college students, both at university and afterwards. However, few tools exist to monitor student teamwork and to help students develop teamwork skills. We present a tool which collects the ...
  • Virtual Reality and Photogrammetry for Improved Reproducibility of Human-Robot Interaction Studies 

    Murnane, Mark; Breitmeyer, Max; Matuszek, Cynthia; Engel, Don (IEEE, 2019-08-15)
    Collecting data in robotics, especially human-robot interactions, traditionally requires a physical robot in a prepared environment, which presents substantial scalability challenges. First, robots provide many possible ...