Week 10 - The Finale! - Presentation - July 25/July 31st

This week, we finished up the bits of the program that we could and we worked fully on our research paper, which is submitted to the site. We presented all we have done in the 10 weeks to the research team. We had our exit interviews with Dr. Metoyer and done a lot of debriefing.

I feel excited and satisfied with our work in the past 10 weeks. I think we have done a great job in moving through this research internship smoothly and efficiently. Throughout this journey, I was motivated, challenged, and excited about everything that came my way. I have learnt so many new skills that I cannot wait to continue in the year ahead. Dr. Metoyer and I have agreed to keep in touch and perhaps continue to find more applications to his research in my school.

I have been very blessed to be part of this program and I just want to thank DREU, Oregon State University, Dr. Metoyer, and the research team for all the support I have gotten throughout my stay here. I am truly grateful.

Week 9 - Adding some new components and rounding up - July 18/July 25

This week, we added the features of having a tutorial before each technique that will be asked to the study participant. This page will be out of the control of the user and will be required that the experimenter to control the program until the next starts. This ensures that the study taker fully understands each technique before they begin.

We also added a special questions page which redirects the program to a series of subhective "Likert type" questions. These questions are separated because they don't follow the regular format of having one or two images in a page, and more than one question will be displayed on the page.

I was also writing my technical report paper for DREU and preparing a presentation for Dr. Metoyer's research team.

Week 8 - Making adjustments and doing some reading - July 11/July 18

This week, I updated the presentation that I was going to give in the 10th week. I gave a summary of all the work I had done so far, with a brief description of the entire project as well. This week, I did something new. Dr. Metoyer asked me to look into the technique called Power Analysis. this analysis is originally used to predict the probability of a type B error. I began to research the topic a lot further and I came to figure out that this technique is most popularly used in determine the sample size that will maximize the power of any study by reducing the probability of a type B error. It was a bit beyond my level of statistics but I challenged myself in atleast understanding what the general concept was.

During our weekly group meeting, we discussed about issues concerning identification of items in our database. We came to realize that naming was very important when it came to questions, and images. This was so that when we want to, we could easily identify questions and the images that those questions use.

As for the coding aspect, I helped fix up some issues we had with automatic session generation in our php code. The program as a whole is now ready for a test run. The only thing that has to be manually done now is session template generation. However, we have agreed that for now, this will be done manually. We are looking into starting some test runs in the 9th week

Week 7 - Tieing up loose ends - July 4th/July 11th

This week I got all the issues of last week resolved, which was adding dynamics to the web pages for the study. After all that was done, I began fixing up little bugs in my program and ultimately cleaning up the code. Professor Metoyer let us know that there will be a code review coming up. So I decided to begin commenting on the portions of code I wrote as it could be reused and understood long after I am gone.

Later on in the week, we began to focus more on the questions that will be asked during the experimental study. I made sure that questions were placed in properly and we were able to display them in the order that we specify. Dr. Metoyer also told us that we will be giving a presentation to the group on the project we have been working on throughout the summer. So I have begun to put together all the work and kind of step back to see the bigger picture.

Week 6 - Making the Connections Pt. 2 - June 27/July 4th

I am still working on the front end linkage and clean-up. This part of the project is proving to be as challenging as i had thought it will be. Most of these challenges come from the switching the page from static to dynamic. When I made this page before, there were no options as to whether there will be one or two images displayed, the type of question (i.e - multiple choice, scales, etc). Now, I need to account for these options dynamically, and be able to display them on the php page.

Anyway, I began with the dynamic image display first. This, for some strange reason, is proving to be chalenging for me. But by the end of the week, I had a good idea of how to go about it. I also changed the mode of obtaining data from a file to obtaining data from the database. I successfully figured out how to record the answers the user makes back to the database. Now, I am working on the image display option. After finishing that up, I will work on the question type options. That is, successfully being able to sisplay answer options depending on what kind of question it is.

Week 5 - Making the Connections - June 20/June 27

This week, I was focusing on linking the forms that I made the previous week to the already existing webpages that will be used for the study. I began with linking the back end question entering forms to the appropriate part of the website and to the database. This was a little bit challenging in the sense that I had to really study the database that was created in order to link the results appropriately.

After this was complete, I began working on connecting the front end user study question form to the project and to the database, so the user's answers are stored back in the database. This connection has been made. However I will need to clean up a few details in the front end. One of which is to make the question loading page dynamic, as opposed to regular static html pages.

Week 4 - Making Forms - June 13/June 20

So since we decided to make our own database and survey system to run our study, Professor Metoyer split up the work with us.Our head student researcher is going to create the database and all the tables that we will use for the study. Nick, my fellow DREU participant was in charge of creating the forms for the user to type in personal information about themselves for the purpose of demographics and statistics. I was given the task to create the back end forms like the one used by the study giver to input questions to the survey.

By doing this, I learnt how to use of php to transfer data collected from one webpage to another page. I learnt how to create webpages dynamically in order to 1)make the program reusable and 2)make the program more efficient so any user of this program does as little work as possible to use the program.

The next step would be to try and connect these forms to the database so as to be able to transfer data collected from the user to the tables for record keeping. These data will include, information of each participant, the results of their survey, and the questions and answers collection from the experimenter (back end input).

Week 3 - Are we changing gear? - June 6/June 13

During our weekly meeting, the head of the research team gave a presentation on the layout of questions that are going to be asked during the experiment study. He also presented a layout of how the experiment should work and his version of the database layout that we should use as back end for dealing with user information and input. another member of the team had a different approach to the database design. The team including Prof. Metoyer discussed the pros and cons of both approaches and came to a conclusion that the team leadeer's approach will be better in the long run.

However, there was the possibility of also using an open source survey program for the experiment study. That's where I came in. This week, I investigated LimeSurvey, an open source program, and examined its features, advantages, and disadvantages. In order to come up with a detailed explanation of how LimeSurvey worked, I had to download the software, and do a run through of making an actual test survey, examining all the tables LimeSurvey generated, see the front-end and back-end sides, and judge its efficiencyy. There were specific tasks we wanted to be able to accomplish, and it is important that the survey program we choose or make must be able to do those tasks. LimeSurvey could not do one of the tasks, and so we decided to just make our own database and design.

Week 2 - php and its uniqueness - May 31/June 6

This week, I studied further the php language and how it could be translated to the program that Dr. Metoyer asked us to code. In our weekly meeting, we were given a "starter" program that we were supposed to build. We were meant to make a program that simply takes information about a study from a file and display that in php format. Specifically, we were asked to make a program that displays two pictures side-by-side, display the question posed and the answer options below the question

This exercise helped me to practice the php skills that I studied previously. I came across problems with syntax a lot of times. However, I felt that this was necessary to learn the language. Ultimately, I figured out how to embedd php code into HTML language. That was pretty cool because I could in a sense make some parts of a static web page to be dynamic.

In the later part of the week, I began to study how to use a database to query and store information as this will be very important for the actual program. The program will need to dstore responses from the user in some way. We decided in the weekly meeting that a mysql database will be the best way to do so. I also started looking into forms and how they are built, because we will have to store some information about the participants of the research study.

Week 1 - The Beginning - May 23/May 31

I arrived at Oregon State on May 23rd, 2009. I must say, that this campus is a lot different from Trinity University, my home institution. This is a much larger campus both in size and in population than what I used to. Anyway, I had to stop at Portland by flight, because Corvallis (the home town of Oregon State) does not have an airport. Now, that seemed really strange because I have always lived in big cities all my life. Anyway, I took a shuttle to Corvallis, which is about 1.5 hours away from the Portland airport.

I got settled in and began to explore the town.....I am a big adventure junkie. I saw a few good place, a whole lot of places to eat, and in particular more Asian restaurants. I thought I was in Heaven. Corvallis is your typical college town. Every store is a convenience store and they are no large scale retail stores anywhere. Needless to say, all the stores were catered to just Oregon State students. To some people, this might be horrific. But I actually find the difference between here and San Antonio very intriguing. This week, I slowly got to know a lot more about this town and I find it a pretty interesting place to spend four years in. I will choose not to expand on that last statement. :)

I met with my mentor, Dr. Metoyer on Tuesday, May 26th, and he kicked off the research session by showing me around and getting all the administrative stuff out of the way. He talked to me about the research in details. I also met my fellow DREU participant here, Nicholas Hubbert. He informed us that we will be working together on our project for the summer. At our next meeting, we set out goals (which are listed in the research project page) for the summer.

This week I worked on getting to primarily familliarizing myself with HTML code and the php language. This is because we will be using php to construct the web application that will be used for the research analysis. When I went through the tutorial, I found out that the language in php is pretty much some derivative of C, Java, and some functional language elements. Luckily, I have taken classes in all three of these languages. So, learning php wasn't too bad. I have worked with HTML before to make a website in high school, so this was more like a revision to me as well. Dr. Metoyer advised that we use the DREU website requirement as a practice tool to master HTML. This has really helped me in brushing up skills that may have slipped my mind. I completed the webpage layout and content this week. I plan to add more stuff to the website to make it appealing in the following weeks.

All contents of this site are made from scratch from HTML code