2019 Research Achievement Award Recipients

The Carleton University Research Achievement Awards are administered by the Office of the Vice-President (Research and International). The purpose of these awards is to recognize outstanding research achievements. The awards were established in 1989 to enhance the quality of research and to recognize research excellence. The recipients’ terms run from May to April.

Mark Boulay

Department of Physics, Faculty of Science

Project: A Global Program for Dark Matter Detection

Understanding the nature of dark matter, which accounts for most of the matter in the universe, is one of the most important topics in particle physics. DEAP-3600 has been searching for dark matter at SNOLAB since 2016 and has achieved the most sensitive search for dark matter with liquid argon. This research program, making use of a new CFI-funded noble detector laboratory at Carleton, enables the development of an ultimate dark matter detector with about 300 tonnes of argon, and with a new global argon dark matter collaboration, will extend sensitivity by over a factor of 100, enabling the potential discovery of this dominant constituent of our universe.

Rowan Thomson

Department of Physics, Faculty of Science

Project: Advancing Brachytherapy Radiation Treatments for Cancer

Brachytherapy is a widely-used radiation treatment for cancer involving radioactive sources within or near a tumour (e.g., in the eye, prostate, breast). Evaluations of dose (energy deposited by radiation per unit mass of tissue) are critical for planning and assessing treatments; however, hospital dose calculations are inaccurate (errors up to 90%). Prof. Thomson is developing egs_brachy, a fast and accurate dose calculation code for brachytherapy: this open-source software will be further developed and implemented for clinical dose evaluations.

Alex Wong

Department of Biology, Faculty of Science

Project: Genetic Background and the Persistence of Antimicrobial Resistance

Prof. Wong’s research program focuses on bacterial evolution, with an emphasis on the evolution of antimicrobial resistance. His team’s recent work has examined the genetic mechanisms of resistance, and the consequences that resistance mutations have for an individual’s fitness – for example, many resistant microbes suffer a fitness cost in the absence of antibiotics. He and his team will investigate the impact of genetic background on the evolution of resistance. This work will have important implications for predicting the evolution and persistence of resistance.

2019 Achievement Award Recipients

The following awards are administered by the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic) and recognize outstanding teaching achievements.

Teaching Achievement Award

The Teaching Achievement Awards are intended to enhance the teaching of their recipients and the quality of instruction at Carleton.

Jeff Dawson, Biology, and Andy Adler, Engineering
Project: Instrumentation for Human Performance – Instructional Modules for Interdisciplinary Collaborative Student-Centred Learning

Instrumentation for measuring and improving human performance is becoming ubiquitous, whether for sport, rehabilitation or lifestyle. Effectively using and interpreting data from these devices, however, is inherently a multi-disciplinary challenge requiring knowledge spanning several disciplines. This award will realize a suite of student-centred modules that bring biology and engineering students together to work collaboratively on student-generated, authentic, research questions. The modules will facilitate new (or enhance current) courses by giving students real-world, practical, skills.

Professional Achievement Award

The Professional Achievement Awards recognize outstanding professional achievements at Carleton University for professional librarians and instructors.

Robert Collier, Computer Science
Project: Procedural Generation of Assignments for Computer Science

The procedural assignment generator project began as an effort to combat unauthorized collaboration in the introductory courses of the School of Computer Science. By developing algorithms that can describe specific activities, identification numbers can be used as sources of pseudorandom data for procedural generation. This will ensure that assignments share the same level of difficulty (while minimizing the probability of duplicate questions) and automatic marking programs can be used to ensure the consistency of assessment.

Kim Hellemans, Neuroscience
Project: An Animation on the Epigenetics of Psychiatric Disease

For my teaching development project, I would like to produce a new 5-minute animation on epigenetics. Essentially, this video would demonstrate how environmental events impact genes and genetic vulnerability to psychiatric illness. This video would be a key tool in teaching a fundamental concept in neuroscience, that would benefit students from 1st to 4th year and beyond. Critically, this video would also be available to the public as it would be hosted on the Carleton University YouTube channel.

Nigel Waltho, Biology
Project: Canadian Scientific Research Diver

As a coral reef ecologist who teaches scuba-based research field courses in the Bahamas it’s becoming increasingly evident that our Undergraduate and Graduate certified divers are poorly trained to partake in research diving. With the aid of this award Carleton University is moving into position to lead all Ontario universities in producing a new 2½ week Canadian Scientific Diver research field course. This award will help address Federal Laws and the Canadian Association of Underwater Scientists requirements for research dive training.

Contract Instructor Teaching Awards

The Contract Instructor Teaching Awards recognize teaching excellence by Contract Instructors.

Zahra Montazeri, Mathematics and Statistics

As a contract instructor for the past 15 years I have been fortunate in using the latest techniques in imparting knowledge to my students. I use Big Blue Button in CuLearn to facilitate scheduled/unscheduled office hours, a document camera along with symbolic software for experiential activities that reinforce understanding, and hybrid activities such as after class time limited online quizzes with real datasets allowing for many interpretations of the output.

Members of the Royal Society of Canada

Chancellor's Professors

Frank Dehne
Chancellor’s Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Jean-Guy Godin
Chancellor’s Professor, Department of Biology

John Oommen
Chancellor’s Professor, School of Computer Science

Evangelos Kranakis
Chancellor’s Professor, School of Computer Science

Lenore Fahrig
Chancellor’s Professor, Department of Biology

Gerald Buchanan
Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus, Department of Chemistry

Giorgio Ranalli
Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth Sciences

James Wright
Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus, Department of Chemistry

Distinguished Research Professors

Vlastimil Dlab
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Luis Ribes
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

John Dixon
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Mizanur Rahman
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Kenneth Williams
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Donald Dawson
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

J.N.K. Rao, School of Mathematics and Statistics
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Mathematics and Statistics

Nicola Santoro
Distinguished Research Professor, School of Computer Science

David Sinclair
Distinguished Research Professor, Department of Physics

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