Carnegie Mellon University
April 13, 2022

CB Teaching Professor and MSAS Associate Director receives Teaching Innovation award

Carnegie Mellon has announced that Dr. Joshua Kangas, Assistant Teaching Professor in the Computational Biology Department, has been chosen to receive a Teaching Innovation Award for his development of innovative Laboratory Automation courses.  This award honors teaching practices and strategies designed to improve student learning in online, hybrid, or face-to-face courses. The Laboratory Automation courses were created for the Computational Biology Department’s ground-breaking Masters of Science in Automated Science program, the first of its kind in the world.  Automated Science combines artificial intelligence and laboratory automation to allow closed-loop scientific experimentation without the need for human intervention.

Josh‘s work to create the automation lab course was accelerated due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  He had always intended that the lab could be used remotely, and as the world shifted, he worked to provide students with workstations on which they could remotely develop robot protocols and installed cameras in the lab enclosure so the students could see their experiments running in real time.

Only 10 other faculty have received this individual award, which recognizes not only outstanding teaching but truly innovative curriculum development.  Josh is only the second from the School of Computer Science.  He will formally receive the award at the University’s Celebration of Education event on April 28th.

In addition to teaching, Josh also serves as academic advisor for MSAS students and supervises the MSAS capstone courses.  He received his Ph.D. in Computational Biology from Carnegie Mellon and was a co-founder, Chief Technology Officer and Chief Executive Officer of Quantitative Medicine, LLC before returning to Carnegie Mellon as an Assistant Teaching Professor.