Professors Receive Grant for Student Created App Programs

HPU High Point University

HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 23, 2013 – Two faculty members in HPU’s Phillips School of Business recently received a $10,500 grant from the Charles Koch Foundation to continue an iPad app program.

The grant will be used to continue to improve two current learning apps developed by Dr. Stephanie Crofton, associate dean of the business school, and Dr. Daniel Hall, assistant professor of economics, and to develop additional apps. The applications are used in class to teach key economic principles.

“Classroom experiments like the ones we are developing wed knowledge with an experience,” explains Hall. “We spend a lot of time in economics talking about the efficiency of free markets; the Pit Market app reveals this efficiency through students’ own experience as buyers and sellers. In our Public Goods app, students learn why public goods are more difficult to produce than private goods by actually failing to produce the public goods themselves. The apps are more than just fun and games, for the knowledge gained sticks with students longer than if the information is acquired from a textbook.”

This fall six students, mentored by Roger Shore, associate professor of computer science, are designing, developing, analyzing and implementing the apps as student workers with grant funds. The grant also allows for those students to present their work at two conferences this school year. This will continue to be a long-term interdisciplinary collaboration with the economics and computer science faculty.

“Through this grant, our computer science majors are gaining valuable experience developing apps that eventually will be rolled out nationally,” says Crofton. “The apps also make it possible for our economics students to participate in real time economic experiments. The experiments show students how their decisions and the related impacts may be affected by various economic, trading and social structures.”

Crofton and Hall plan to make the apps available to any educator wishing to use them as teaching aids for free enterprise.

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