This award provides funding to Portland State University under the direction of Dr. Shu-Guang Li, for the support of a Combined Research-Curriculum Development project enttiled, "VIRGE: Virtual Interactive Remediation in the Groundwater Environment-An Action Oriented Curriculum Innovation in Environmental Engineering. The objective of this collaborative project is to develop an innovative, computer-based virtual environment for teaching students how to investigate and clean up contaminated groundwater sites. This system is called Virtual Interactive Remediation in the Groundwater Environment or VIRGE. VIRGE is to be implemented and evaluated in undergraduate and graduate courses in three different academic departments at two universities (Portland State University and Oregon State University). VIRGE incorporates learning theory and cognitive-sciences research that promotes student-based learning styles. Using the practical and engaging context of groundwater remediation, VIRGE integrates the student's education and research roles, and stresses active, collaborative learning with less dependence on lectures. A key goal of VIRGE is to utilize emerging information technologies and network communication to develop each student's practical problem solving skills, critical thinking abilities, and capability to engage in lifelong learning.