VIP Projects: the tool that fosters the link between undergraduate and research carried out in the U. Mayor.


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After a year since its implementation, this program of the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies, which seeks that academics, researchers and students work together, has 14 projects underway.

A new type of subject that allows the link between undergraduate and research carried out at the Universidad Mayor, in a format that encourages work on highly challenging and motivating interdisciplinary projects. That is what the “Vertically Integrated Projects VIP” program is in charge of, in charge of the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies of our house of studies.

This initiative was presented in September 2018 by Edward Coyle, an academic from the prestigious Georgia Tech, an American university located in Atlanta that has applied the tool since 1995.

The director of Educational Innovation U. Mayor, Alex Slater, explained that “VIP projects work as subjects that work in a format based on proposed projects, led by academics from Research Centers, laboratories and Schools. These have an interdisciplinary character, that is, they are made up of undergraduate and graduate students from different careers".

“Participants have the possibility of carrying out research processes and strengthening their critical thinking and scientific reasoning, keys to today's professional world. At the same time, they develop soft skills such as leadership, effective communication and teamwork, ”added the academic".

Thus, and after more than a year since its implementation, 14 projects are currently being developed:

  • What is autism? Studying the current state of research and treatment of autism spectrum disorders in Chile (academic in charge: Gonzalo Cancino).
  • Innovapyme: knowledge management exploring the potential for innovation development in SMEs (Fernando Crespo).
  • Conservation, research and sustainable tourism in Patagonia: (Enrique Muñoz and Katherine Daniel).
  • Rock and pop music genealogy (Alex Slater and Fernando Crespo).
  • Python animations for applications in nanomagnetism (Andrés Franco).
  • Experience with Science & Theater (Paola Murgas and Jennyfer Serrano).
  • The objectives of sustainable development and the University: climate change, energy, old age, disability, genetics (Sergio Peña).
  • Neurohacking team (Mauricio Sáez).
  • Intestinal microbiota and human health (Erick Riquelme and Felipe Court).
  • Python programming: fantastic materials (Francisca Guzmán and Felipe Valencia).
  • Neurodegeneration modifiers search platform (Mario Sanhueza).
  • Prosocial behavior, gender and career choice (Claudia Sanhueza and Alejandra Sánchez).
  • Optimizing the education of health professionals through simulation (Katherine Daniel).
  • Physical activity, sedentary time, healthy eating and risk factors in low and middle income countries (Gerson Luis de Morales).

These projects are framed both in the institutional strategy that seeks to foster interdiscipline within our community, and in the strengthening of research, which began in 2016 after the creation of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research.

Thus, the main indicators generated last year include the increase in researchers, who went from 94 in 2018 to 113 in 2019.

Meanwhile, publications indexed in scientific journals also had sustained growth in recent years: 110 in 2017; 293 in 2018; and 399 in 2019. Of this last figure, 244 papers appeared in journals belonging to categories Q1 and Q2, the most important in the area.

In addition, last year our institution was awarded 47 Fondecyt research projects (Initiation, Regular, Postdoctoral), totaling $ 4,852,812,000. This doubled what was achieved in 2018, when 35 funds totaled $ 2,484,807,000.

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