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Office of Research, Engagement and Extension

By its nature, research and scholarship at the College of Design is interdisciplinary and collaborative.

The Office of Research, Extension, and Engagement is committed to fostering research and scholarship through collaboration with faculty and students in concept and partnership development, proposal development and submission, regulatory and post-award management.

Services and Committees

Our services in the Pre-Award area include:

  • Assistance in seeking and identifying funding opportunities
  • Review of RFPs (Request for Proposals)
  • Preparation of proposal, bio-sketches, budget, budget-justifications, and other forms/documents and provide guidance on compliance with state and federal financial regulations.
  • Development of proposal schedule and deadlines
  • Obtaining the required sub-award documents from partner organizations.
  • Electronic submission to PINS, Grants.Gov, NSF FastLane, etc.

Our services in the Post-Award area include:

  • New award meetings and overall grant administration
  • Time and effort reporting
  • Documentation and reporting of cost-sharing commitments
  • Budget oversight (project budget development, analysis, projections, and revisions)
  • No cost-extension requests
  • Project closeout

The College of Design has a Scholarship, Research, Extension and Engagement (SREE) Committee consisting of four faculty on two-year appointments. This committee serves as an advisor to the Assistant Dean for Research and Extension on research, extension, and engagement related scholarly efforts and administration. Two faculty members who serve on the University Research Committee also coordinates and provides input to the Assistant Dean on a regular basis.

Current SREE Committee Members:

  • Helen Armstrong (Graphic Design and Industrial Design)
  • Wayne Place (Architecture)
  • Lesley-Ann Noel (Art + Design)
  • Gavin Smith (Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning)

University Research Committee College of Design Faculty Representatives:

  • Deborah Littlejohn (Graphic Design and Industrial Design)
  • Gavin Smith (Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning)


The University Faculty Scholars Program will identify up to twenty (20) tenured or tenure-track faculty each year. Faculty members selected as University Faculty Scholars will carry the title for the duration of their faculty appointment at NC State and will receive a 5% permanent increase to their base salary.


Nominations are limited to:

  • assistant professors who have been re-appointed for a second term,
  • all associate professors, and
  • professors within the first three years of appointment at that rank.

Faculty members who were nominated but not named University Faculty Scholars in previous years and are still eligible may be nominated by their college. However, no faculty member may receive the award more than once. Based on the number of active faculty at each rank, the College of Design has been and is expected to be eligible to nominate 2 faculty.

College Nominations.

The nominees from the College of Design are due to the Provost on October 12, 2021.

Nomination Process

  1. The University Faculty Scholars (UFS) program and College nomination process will be announced to the College of Design faculty. Faculty members interested in being candidates for the UFS program will be encouraged to express their interest to their department head.
  2. The Associate Dean will ask Department Heads to identify two candidates to be considered for review for the University Faculty Scholars Program. Department heads are encouraged to confirm with nominees their willingness to prepare their application (in a timely fashion) before nominating a faculty member. Heads may use whatever procedures they consider most suitable to select these candidates. Heads should email the candidates’ names (as well as their motivation for selecting the faculty member addressing why this individual is suitable to be recognized as a University Faculty Scholar) to the College’s Scholarship Research Extension and Engagement (SREE) committee chair and the Associate Dean by the end of 9/3/2021).
  3. Note: If the SREE is comprised of primarily junior faculty members (e.g. not having at least one full professor or at least one distinguished faculty member such as a University Faculty Scholar or member of the Research Leadership Academy), two senior/distinguished faculty members will be asked by the Associate Dean to join with the SREE in the selection nomination process.
  4. The Associate Dean will review the list of nominees with the Dean. The Dean may choose to add up to two additional nominees to the pool of candidates in time for timely notification of the candidates.
  5. Candidates will be notified by the SREE chair by 9/10/2021.
  6. The SREE chair will update the Associate Dean of process/committee progress via email.
  7. Candidates will prepare their application packages. The application package will consist of the materials called for in the Provost’s annual memo that establishes the process for nominations. Candidates’ materials are due to the SREE committee chair by noon 9/24/2021.
  8. The SREE committee chair will place the candidates’ materials on an online platform (such as a team google drive) providing committee members with access and notify team members that the candidates. Materials are ready for review.
  9. The SREE committee1 will review the 8-10 candidates’ materials. SREE committee 1 members will provide written ranking for each candidate; the committee will meet to discuss their ranked assessments of the candidates. The review meeting can be attended in-person or remotely to accommodate committee members’ schedules. The committee will recommend those candidates (not to exceed 3) who present the strongest case for being named University Faculty Scholars to the Dean by Friday, 10/01/2021 ).
  10. The Dean will review the candidates recommended by the SREE and will forward those (the pair) he approves to the University Advisory Committee, the Associate Dean, and the SREE chair by 10/12/2021. Additionally, the University Faculty Scholar candidates and department heads will be notified by the SREE chair of the individuals put forward by the Dean as the College of Design nominees.

1 Including senior/distinguished faculty members as necessary.

Research Initiatives + Labs

Teacher and student exploring new technology

Our efforts actively engage faculty, staff, students, and the design community. Research initiatives and faculty labs highlight our commitment to address the most pressing local and global issues of society and the design profession, including high-performance buildings, visual narratives, health and well-being, and sustainable and resilient communities. Our faculty and researchers’ strengths in design thinking, innovation, and technology — along with tenacity in spatial and environmental analysis, simulations, prototyping, and human-centered approaches — provide unique opportunities for partnerships with non-profits, foundations, industries, communities, as well as city, state, and federal government agencies.

High Performance Buildings

Faculty and graduate students are pursuing cutting-edge research in building technology and high-performance buildings.

Visual Narratives

Our work in visual narratives creates new forms of scholarship and communication, new computational media and their application to increased understanding of our past, present and future.  This focus area bridges the expertise of engineers, humanists, and designers to establish next-generation applications in visual media.

Health and Well-Being

Our work promotes the interdependence of human health, well-being, and the ecological health of the land by understanding the consequences of human actions. Primary areas of inquiry include children’s outdoor environments, post-occupancy evaluation of model environments, and human-centered design.

Postnatal Patient Safety Learning Lab (coming soon)

Sustainable and Resilient Communities

Faculty and graduate students organize and lead trans-disciplinary research and engagement projects to address the critical ecological and community development challenges in vulnerable communities and regions.

Virtual + Augmented Reality

The Experience Design Lab is a cross-disciplinary community, which explores virtual and augmented experiences as a cultural practice. Collaborators take a human-centered approach, empowering artists, designers, humanists, scientists, and engineers to delve into the evolution of our society through direct engagement with technology.