Campus News in Brief

New professional master’s degree program announced

The Carnegie Institute of Technology (CIT) has created a new master’s degree program called Energy, Science, Technology, and Policy. The program is based in engineering with components in public policy and economics, with a view toward the fields of energy development, production, and transport.

Intended for professionals in engineering- or technology-related fields, the master’s program begins with a set of core courses directly relating to energy. Examples of these courses include Energy Conversion and Supply, Demand and Utilization of Energy, and Energy Policy and Economics. After these initial core courses, a student then customizes the remaining aspects of the major according to a discipline within CIT, such as chemical engineering, civil and environmental engineering, mechanical engineering, and so on. Courses are taught by faculty members across CIT, providing a varied experience.

As explained by the program website (, upon completion of the program, “graduates will be prepared for positions of responsibility in multiple markets, including traditional utility companies and energy suppliers, alternative and renewable energy companies, power generation and distribution equipment, energy intensive manufacturing ... consulting companies, government labs, and academic institutions.”

Collective intelligence of groups exceeds individuals’

When working on a group project for class, it may be worthwhile to consider a recent study performed by Carnegie Mellon, MIT, and Union College. The conclusion supported by the research indicates that cooperating groups display an intelligence beyond that of an individual member. The extent of this group intelligence is affected by how well group members interact and perceive each other’s emotions.

According to a university press release, groups with a more even distribution of participation yielded higher group intelligence, along with groups having more women, as they tend to have a higher “social sensitivity.”

“Social sensitivity has to do with how well group members perceive each other’s emotions,” co-author Christopher Chabris said in the release.

Researchers examined groups of two to five people working on various tasks, such as negotiations or brainstorming, at both Carnegie Mellon and the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence. Implications of such research could be the use of these studies by organizations to gauge the effectiveness of groups. Researchers included Anita Woolley of the Tepper School of Business as the lead author; Nada Hashmi, Thomas Malone, and Alexander Pentland of MIT; and Christopher Chabris of Union College.