Georgia Southern University is an emerging research institution that not only depends on the expertise of the faculty researchers but also the dynamic ideas and creativity of its students. Undergraduate students engage in experiential learning across the Institution, assisting faculty in research efforts. Students have opportunities to take advantage of individual research projects in their area of interest, execute research projects as part of their class curriculum, or do support research efforts of faculty members. Being involved helps students gain both technical and non-technical skills such as lab techniques, how to accomplish worthy and accurate data analysis and interpretation, team building skills, time management and communication skills. There are countless opportunities in each college and department to be involved in the innovative research happening at Georgia Southern University.
For more information, contact:
Karin Scarpinato, Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Research “in Residence”
Georgia Southern University
* Apply what you have learned in the classroom
* Provides insight into your chosen field of study
* Hands-on experience is much better than theoretical one
* Learn new technical and non-technical skills
* Develop a one-on-one mentoring relationship with a professor
* Find out what you like, not like
* Learn about what a professional in your area of interest does
* Get contacts and references, improve your CV
* Work in a team
* Learn how to present your data
* Learn better problem-solving skills
* Learn better time-management
YOU SHOULD DO RESEARCH/CREATIVE ACTIVITY IF YOU
* Are academically motivated in ANY discipline
* Are interested in taking an active approach to your education
* Want to develop professional, technical and non-technical skills
* Are curious about original research/creative activities on campus
Mikaela Shupp, Human Ecology
In the 1960’s, Walter Mischel performed a series of delayed gratification studies by offering a child the choice to be given one marshmallow immediately or to be given two marshmallows if the child waited until the experimenter returned. With the help of Dr. Maurer and Dr. Kropp, I am hoping to recreate this experiment with the children at the child development center on campus. However, we are using Wrigley, an animal assisted therapy (AAT) dog, to model good behavior for the experimental group. The utilization of a model, specifically a therapy dog, has never been attempted in relation to delayed gratification studies. We are hoping to make an impact on AAT and delayed gratification research.
Michael Melvin, Chemistry
Gold nanorods are an attractive material for medicinally driven applications owing to their interesting optical properties, long-term stability, and non-cytotoxicity. My current work centers around the conjugation of derivatized porphyrins to the gold nanorod surface resulting in a novel cancer fighting composite. Under irradiation at the appropriate wavelength these composites significantly heat up resulting in death of temperature labile cancer cells. In parallel I am working on improving the efficiency of our synthetic approach for the preparation of gold nanorods.
Briana Miller, Biology, COUR Scholar 2013
Briana Miller, senior biology major, presented her research findings at the Society of Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas in January 2014. This experience was funded by the COSM COUR Fall 2013 Travel Awards program. The research she completed was done in Juneau, Alaska through the Research Experiences for Undergraduates program. This is a ten week summer internship funded by the National Science Foundation. Her project allowed her to study the concentrations of ecdysteroids and vitllogenins in the three sexual stages of the spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros) under the direction of faculty mentor Dr. Sophie George.
Kyle Mahoney, Human Ecology
I am analyzing the responses from physics and child and family development students to a pre/post-test questionnaire regarding the extent to which they committed to personal learning commitments and how those commitments affected their overall learning experiences. I am analyzing these responses qualitatively using open and axial coding in an attempt to find a teaching method that would best benefit the students by helping them identify which areas they need to address academically.
Vanessa Arendt, Chemistry, COUR Travel Scholar
My research consists of the carbon analysis of the soil samples in which switchgrass seeds were planted with and without pine trees. The analysis consisted of a Total Organic Carbon Solid Sample Module at Georgia Southern University in addition to an isotopic analysis that preformed on the Thermo Flash elemental analyzer coupled to a ThermoFisher Delta V plus isotope ratio mass spectrometer at the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography in Savannah. With the help of COSM COUR funds, I presented this work at the 46th Annual Southeastern Undergraduate Regional Conference (SURC) at Knoxville, TN in January of 2014.
Alexius Coleman, Child & Family Development
My name is Alexius. I am a senior Child and Family Development major. This summer, I worked along with Dr. Hall in collecting data at the local summer camp, Camp Adventure. The purpose of the research was to see if children’s perceptions of program staff changed over time and if their perceptions were related to program quality. Our findings were that the younger (Pre-K) children had more positive perceptions of the program, whereas the older children (4th and 5th) were more average. This implies that the staff should try harder to connect and build relationships with the older children, whom may have attended previous summers.
Helen Barrett, Pre-Nursing
I, Helen Barrett, am conducting analysis on qualitative data using a Grounded Theory approach. The 2012-2013 FYE: Animal Assisted Therapy class was required to write blog posts about their service-learning experiences with either therapy dogs and their handlers or a therapeutic horseback riding program. Through analysis of the students’ individual and collective experiences, I am finding three possible truths: 1) Service-learning provided the students with the knowledge to identify the influences of animal-assisted therapy on human rehabilitation, 2) Blog post writing forced students to recall the details of what they had learned through their experiences outside the classroom, and 3) Animals themselves can be utilized as therapy mechanisms.
Lillian Morgado, Foreign Languages
Dr. Amarie and I are analyzing the Jacques Roubaud’s collection of unconventional sonnets. In our paper we try to find an underlying structure to how the book is arranged. I look at it from the game and mathematical view, and Dr. Amarie looks at it from a more narrative and literary view. I hope to present the paper at the Council on Undergraduate Research Conference this summer.
Alyssa Hutcheson, Psychology
To’Meisha Edwards, Psychology
The Belmont Report was created to ensure ethical conduct while conducting research, and at universities, institutional review boards (IRBs) evaluate the ethics of proposed studies. Based on prior research on ethics and gender, we would expect proposals by female researchers to be rated as more ethical than those by male researchers. In the present study, participants reviewed one of four fabricated IRB proposals that had either a female or male researcher and either contained references or no references within the literature review (as an indication of thorough research for the proposal). After reading the proposal, participants rated several aspects of their perceived ethics of the study and indicated whether or not they would approve the study. We predicted that the proposal with references and a female researcher would be perceived as the most ethical. Indeed, participants were more likely to view projects as ethical when written by female researchers. When references were used, the male-female effect was eliminated. Our results indicate that IRB proposals should be blind-reviewed to remove bias. In addition, the use of references likely indicates a well-researched proposal and abolishes the effect of researcher gender.
Julie Odom-Dixon, Psychology
Dr. Nicholas Holtzman and Julie Odom-Dixon have teamed up to study the relationship between personality and the way people present themselves. More specifically, the research team aims to answer a simple question: Compared to someone with a less deviant personality, will a person with a more deviant personality be more inclined to “dress to impress”?
Glorhea Sherman, Psychology
I am Glorhea Sherman, undergraduate Psychology major. I am enrolled in Research Experience under Dr. Amy Hackney. Currently, I am working with two students in the doctoral program here at Georgia Southern University under Dr. Hackney. Through working with them, I have discovered a new interest in understanding perceptions of marital rape in jury decision making. My research will include factors that influence these jury perspectives such as age, gender, social class, religion, culture, experience and other potential factors. I intend to begin by observing and getting a general idea of attitudes toward marital rape from my peers and then my next step is to create the survey. My goal is to gain an understanding of how marital rape cases would generally be ruled in court and why.
Natasha Laballe, Psychology
Dr. Nielsen and I are currently in the process of devising the methodology for a research project examining the benefits of religious fundamentalism. The research will allow for us to study religious fundamentalism as it relates to participants’ doubt, optimism, locus of control, and other valuable components of their personal experience. We are intending to use experimental conditions to manipulate the fundamentalist mindset of participants so as to better establish causation rather than merely correlation. Our current research will hopefully contribute to a better understanding of religious fundamentalism, which is a subject that has become particularly relevant in our times.
We are seeking undergraduate students who have done at least one semester of mentored undergraduate research/creative activity who are enthusiastic and have great communication skills to be available to answer questions from other students. We are looking for students from a diversity of majors, including the performing arts, humanities and social sciences.
As an undergraduate research scholar you will be responsible for representing Georgia Southern’s undergraduate research/creative activity mission, as applicable, and answer questions from your peers. This will not require you to miss classes. Scholars will put together an Undergraduate Research Magazine – from students, for students.
If you are interested in becoming an undergraduate research scholar for 2014/15, please fill out an application form
For more information on this program, please contact
Dr. Karin Scarpinato, Ph.D.
Taylor Vail, Abel Sualevai and Andrew Waters, award winning presentation and accompanying paper, Civil Engineering & Construction Management majors, GA Undergrad Research Conference, Columbus State University 1/25/14
Take any opportunity to showcase your research:
GEORGIA SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM 2014
April 15, 2014
Nessmith-Lane Conference Center
INTERNATIONAL STUDIES UNDERGRADUATE CONFERENCE
April 1-2, 2014
PHI KAPPA PHI RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM
April 9, 2014, Russell Union
Applications due February 24
SCHOOL OF HUMAN ECOLOGY RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM
April 14, 2014l 6-8pm
Student Lounge, School of Human Ecology building
SPRING 2014 HONORS RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM
April 18, 2014, 12 pm
Nessmith-Lane Conference Center
National Conference on Undergraduate Research
April 3-5, 2014, Lexington, Kentucky
GA URC 2014
November 14-15, 2014, Georgia Southern University
COSM seminar series, open to anyone interested in interdisciplinary research
Fridays, noon, COE 1115
Biology Seminar series
Monday, 11:15am, Biological Sciences 1109
Math Colloquium and Seminars
Fridays, 1:20pm, MP3314
Spring 2014 Psychology Department Colloquium Series
Colloquium – SP 2014
Dr. Mark Leary, Social Psychologist
April 24, 2014, 10am
GURC – winning paper/presentations
BRAG ABOUT YOURSELF!
Do you have a recent PUBLICATION?
Have you PRESENTED your research at a conference recently?
Have you received an AWARD recently?
Or would you just like to SHARE your research experience with others?
We want to HEAR FROM YOU!
Please send your information to
Dr. Karin Scarpinato, Ph.D.
COUR Research Symposium
UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT TRAVEL AWARDS
The Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development is offering a limited number of travel grants, up to $1,000 each, for undergraduate students presenting original research at a regional or national conference.
Award recipients are required to provide a summary of their experience together with the winning abstract no later than one month after attending the conference. This material may be made public in the new undergraduate research journal.
- Students must be an undergraduate and enrolled continuously before and during the time of award and travel; if the student is a senior, travel must be completed within three months of graduation.
- GPA of 3.0 or better
- The primary research mentor must be a GA Southern faculty member
Application material (see form below):
- Electronic application form, including abstract, explanation of benefit and budget
- Letter of support for cost-sharing, if applicable
- Letter of support from faculty advisor
- Copy of unofficial transcript
The Undergraduate Research Council will choose the awardees based on the merit of research and benefit to the student.
Deadline: Complete applications will be reviewed on the 15th of each month, for travel after the 1st of the following month.
All reimbursement material, receipts etc. need to be received no later than 2 weeks after return.
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