Dr. Naji Husseini has been chosen as one of three recipients of the 2016-2017 NC State Gertrude Cox Award for Innovative Excellence in Teaching and Learning with Technology. Naji, a lecturer in BME since 2015, was nominated by the Department for his commitment to creative and innovative teaching and learning practices. His students rave about his BME 201 lab, in which they learn how to program using MATLAB software. Instead of using mostly simulated data, as most MATLAB courses do, Naji uses real-time data with the help of Raspberry Pi, a small computer. The Raspberry Pi allows for easy data acquisition and input, so now his students can capture real-time data, process it in MATLAB, then use it for real biomedical applications.
This approach makes the labs more interactive and bridges the gap between data acquisition, processing, and output; most labs do one or two of those, but real-life applications do all three. It also allows for students to be introduced to more advanced biomedical applications earlier in their careers, meaning they are more equipped to handle complex biomedical problems than most of their peers. And, since the equipment for this lab is so cost-effective, Naji is able to teach more students than ever before.
This is the first time a BME faculty member has received this award, and the first time in eight years that the College of Engineering has had a winner. Provost Warwick Arden presented the award at a celebratory event in April. Congratulations, Naji, and thank you for your dedication to our students!