Exploring How Wild Dolphins Might Ease Anxiety & Help Students Learn Math & Engineering

Name of Award

Faculty Research & Scholarly Activities Grant

Date Awarded



Mathematics and Physics

Project Description

Jenny Pavlovic, Assistant Professor of Math and Physics, was awarded a $4,470 Faculty Research & Scholarly Activities grant to fund a feasibility study to investigate how swimming with dolphins might ease math anxiety, inspire students to ask their questions and help them learn math and engineering. A wilderness trip to the WildQuest Retreat Center in Bimini with a marine naturalist and dolphin expert will provide opportunities to swim with wild dolphins. From this experience, a list of questions will be generated to arouse students’ curiosity about dolphins and will be used to create new math and engineering problems and projects focusing on the dolphins. The WildQuest Retreat Center will be assessed for its appropriateness for hosting a student trip. A summary report including an assessment of the WildQuest experience, a literature review, experiential results, and outline of the resulting math and engineering ideas, problems and projects, and plans for future work and dissemination of the results will also be completed.

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