Student Abstracts


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Ghasan M. TabelFaculty Mentor: Dr. Barbara K. Burgess

Azotobacter vinelandii NADPH: Ferredoxin Reductase Interaction with Ferredoxin I and Flavodoxin and its Role in Protection from Methyl Viologen

Iron-sulfur ([Fe-S]) and flavin-containing proteins within aerobic bacterial cells can reduce externally added methyl viologen. The reduced methyl viologen then reacts with oxygen, causing the intracellular production of superoxide and cell death. Because such redox stress also occurs naturally, all cells have evolved mechanisms to protect themselves from superoxide toxicity. In Azotobacter vinelandii it is proposed that a small 7Fe containing [Fe-S] protein designated ferredoxin I (FdI) serves as a sensor of this redox stress. When the stress is over it is proposed that NADPH levels build up, that a specific NADPH:ferredoxin reductase (FPR) becomes reduced, that it specifically reduces FdI and that FdI then reduces a critical transcriptional regulator shutting off a number of superoxide protection genes including one encoding superoxide dismutase. Although flavodoxin (Fld) is also a redox partner of FPR it does not serve to control the regulatory circuit. The growth analysis data presented here show that FdI deletion strains, which constitutively express the superoxide protection proteins, are protected from externally added sublethal levels of methyl viologen. The wild-type strain and Fld- strains are protected only after a lag period, while a Fld/FdI double mutant exhibits no protection. Growth analysis of site-directed mutants of FdI in the presence of methyl viologen provides evidence that it is the FdI [3Fe-4S] cluster and not the [4Fe-4S] cluster that is involved in this response. It is hypothesized that FPR has the central role in the protection from oxidative stress, and in which direction its electrons flow is largely determined by the presence or absence of Fld and/or partially or fully functional FdI.


Erik TaijiFaculty Mentor: Dr. Bryan Vila

Testing the Utility of Pupillometry as an Objective Measure of Police Fatigue

The association between fatigue and poor job performance is well established, leading to the curtailment of working hours for such occupational groups as nuclear power plant workers, pilots, truck drivers and medical interns. However, little attention has been paid to the work hours of police and there is little detailed information about police overtime practices. This study is part of a larger research effort that will explore the detrimental effects of police fatigue with the cooperation of three police departments in different regions of the United States. For the first time, an attempt will be made to objectively measure the relationship between patrol officers' work hours and fatigue. The pilot study reported here will explore the utility of pupillometry equipment, a non-invasive computer device that can detect cognitive and motor impairments by measuring an individual's eye movement in response to light, for measuring police fatigue. If this device is found to be useful for measuring police fatigue, it might provide a means for the early detection and prevention of possible safety threats to both the public and police officers. It might be possible to use pupillometry technology to reduce police officer accidents, injuries, and misconduct associated with job related fatigue.

Lorena Michelle TeranFaculty Mentor: Dr. Margaret Schneider Jamner

Acculturation, Latinas, and HIV Risk

Urban mortality rates show that Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is the leading cause of death for Latinas between the ages of 25 and 34. For Latina women, in particular, 41% of diagnosed cases in 1992 were attributable to heterosexual transmission. Research has shown that women at risk for HIV and other STD's tend not to use condoms, especially during sex with a main partner. It has been suggested that Latinas may be especially reluctant to insist that their main partner use a condom as a result of socio-cultural values that emphasize male dominance. The present study employed a detailed assessment of women's level of acculturation to examine the widely-held assumption that less acculturated Latinas are at increased risk for sexually transmitted HIV. Questionnaires were administered to 75 female college students of Latino descent. The survey assessed the respondents' self-identified ethnic identity, generation, cultural values, degree of acculturation, self-esteem, and use of condoms with their main partner. In addition, questions about the self-identified ethnic identity, generation, and degree of acculturation of each respondent's main partner was assessed. In our study 53% of the women and 50% of the main partners were less acculturated. The study found that acculturation was not significantly associated with condom use. However, the generation of the main partner was significantly associated with using a condom, therefore women with main partners who were more recent immigrants were less likely to use condoms. Furthermore, our newly developed cultural values scale significantly correlated with the language acculturation scale. This study does not support the widely held assumption that less acculturated Latinas are less likely to use condoms and are at increased risk for HIV. However it does support our original contention that the partner's cultural values need to be taken into account.

Taigy ThomasFaculty Mentor: Dr. Elaine Vaughn

Social Diversity in Response to Environmental Risks

Policy makers often struggle to make environmental risk decisions that are effective, just and practical. This is made more difficult because of the varying circumstances of exposure and differing responses to environmental hazards by various social groups. Persistent conflicts about how to manage situations such as the disposal of toxic waste, nuclear power plants, and chemical additives in foods often reflect fundamental disagreements about how to define the policy problem. Recently, many ethnically diverse and poorer communities particularly have been vocal in questioning the fairness and effectiveness of decisions to protect public health. Formal studies of public response to risk often have excluded communities characterized by extreme poverty and considerable ethnic diversity, even though they are likely to be at greater risk and are more vulnerable to negative effects of environmental hazards. The purpose of our research is twofold: First, we seek to provide information about the broader social and physical circumstances of exposure to toxic substances in several inner-city communities by constructing a "risk" profile of the sociophysical context of exposure. Second, we are measuring public response to health risks across diverse communities, with an emphasis on the variety of values and conceptualizations or risk problems that may exist across society. Multimethods will be used including experimental,survey, interview and systematic observational techniques, as well as an analysis of archival government records to map the hazards existing in these communities. Four hundred participants will be sampled from selected urban areas over the course of the project. Results may provide policy makers with information about how various lay populations assess environmental risks, and the most effective ways to engage diverse social groups in the process of risk management.

Christine Trinh TranFaculty Mentor: Dr. Mary-Louise Kean

Processing of Definite and Indefinite Reference in English

This study is designed to investigate whether there is a dissociation in sensitivity to errors in word order and agreement in adult native speakers of English and native speakers of Vietnamese and Chinese. In experiment one, subjects will be tested individually using a visual lexical decision paradigm. In this paradigm, the subject sees sequences consisting of two words, an English word and a non-word, two English words or two non-words. The subjects' task is to indicate whether both words in the sequence are words of English. Responses are made by pressing a 'yes' key or 'no' key. The stimuli include word pairs where the words form a well-formed "constituent" (e.g., determiner/quantifier + noun 'these toys', adjective + noun 'blue shirt,' and noun + verb 'trees grow'), word pairs where there are anomalous word order (e.g., noun + determiner 'stones these', noun + adjective 'word short') and word pairs where there is a mismatch in number agreement (e.g., 'these bag'). In experiment two, subjects will also be tested individually. In this paradigm, the experimenter asks the subject to "touch a/the white/black square/circle one." Subjects respond by touching the array of white/black square(s)/circle(s). It is predicted that both native speakers and non-native speakers of English will have shorter response time in 'determiner + noun' mismatch in number agreement conditions (*DN) than in the 'noun + determiner' anomalous word order conditions (*ND). Non-native speakers should have an even shorter response time compared to native speakers of English in *ND and *DN conditions. It is also predicted that the response times of native and non-native speakers in well-formed constituents will be equal.

Diana Doquyen TranFaculty Mentor: Dr. John F. Marshall

1S, 3R-ACPD Induces Contralateral Rotation and Fos Expression in 6-OHDA-Lesioned Rats

This study proposes to examine the role of striatal metabotropic glutamate receptors in a rat model of Parkinson's disease. Chemical lesions of the dopamine-producing neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta in rat brains, by injection of the neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA), have been used as an experimental model of Parkinson's disease. Studies with 6-OHDA-lesioned rats have suggested that the neurotransmitter glutamate may contribute to the abnormal basal ganglia activity resulting from dopamine loss. Glutamate is an amino acid neurotransmitter that acts through 3 types of receptors: NMDA, AMPA-kainate, and metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs). Drugs which block NMDA and AMPA-kainate receptors have been shown to have therapeutic effects on experimental models of Parkinson's disease. Recently, it has been reported that 1S, 3R-ACPD, a mGluR agonist, acts within the basal ganglia to stimulate motor behavior in normal rats by causing the release of dopamine. However, the role of mGluRs in the 6-OHDA rat model of Parkinson's disease has not been examined. In this study, 1S, 3R-ACPD was infused into the striatum, the input nucleus of the basal ganglia, in intact and 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. Rotation was monitored for 6 hours. Fos protein, used as an indicator of neural activity, was examined in several basal ganglia nuclei using immunocytochemistry. Striatal infusion of 1S, 3R-ACPD induced contralateral rotation in both intact and 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. Fos protein expression was found to be elevated in several basal ganglia nuclei in both intact and 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. However, the pattern of Fos expression was not predicted by the current model of basal ganglia function. These results suggest that intrastriatal infusion of 1S, 3R-ACPD can alter basal ganglia activity and induce motor behavior even in the absence of dopamine. This indicates that mGluR agonists may have therapeutic benefits in the treatment of Parkinson's disease.

Lisa My An Tran Faculty Mentor: Dr. John C. Chen

Platelet Alterations from Prolonged External Ventricular Assist

Clinically, ventricular assist devices are used to provide cardiac support. However, past studies of in vitro cardiopulmonary bypass circuits (CPB) demonstrate that interactions between blood and synthetic surfaces promote hematological complications, such as platelet dysfunction. Comparable problems are found in left ventricular assist devices (LVAD). LVAD's are employed either after open heart surgery or as a bridge to cardiac transplantation in selected patients. Following LVAD implantation, the most common immediate complication is bleeding. Platelets play a vital role in clot formation. The goal of this study is to examine the sustainability of platelet function in vitro LVADs. An in vitro LVAD was run using 450 ml of whole blood drawn into a citrate-phosphate-dextrose-adenine (CPDA) bag with 4.5 ml heparin added. Glucose, activated clotting time, pH, pCO2, pO2, and O2saturation values were maintained at physiological values. Whole blood platelet aggregation impedance and luminescence, assays were performed on samples drawn periodically for the first twenty-four hours. Collagen- and ristocetin-induced aggregation decreased by 50% in 4.5 and 5 h, respectively. The rates of decrease differed - 2.89 ohms/hr for collagen and 1.18 ohms/hr for ristocetin. Negligible aggregation was observed at the end of twelve hours. We conclude that temporal platelet dysfunction is associated with LVAD use. This knowledge could be used to reduce complications associated with the use of ventricular assist devices in man.

Lynn Lin Trang Faculty Mentor: Dr. Nancy A. DaSilva

Development and Characterization of a Stable Integration Method in the Yeast Kluyveromyces lactis

Throughout the course of history, innovations, improvements, and discoveries made in science have strengthened our acknowledgment of the importance of research towards the advancement of biotechnology. This current project focuses on developing a method that may greatly improve the mass production of important pharmaceuticals and various compounds for biological and diagnostic studies. As an important industrial microorganism, Kluyveromyces lactis (a dairy yeast) is a potential host for these highly desired compounds. Our study of regulated integration of multiple stable genes into the chromosomes of K. lactis is important for the production of both host and recombinant proteins. It has been shown in previous studies that K. lactis has a higher secretory capacity for complex eucaryotic proteins than Saccharomyces cerevisiae (10-100 fold better than S. cerevisiae). This higher efficiency in secretion has led to an increased interest for the development of stable integration methods in K. lactis. Our application of the d/UB-integration method (originally developed in our lab for S. cerevisiae) has allowed us to successfully integrate a series of genes into two strains of this yeast. The results indicate the promise of this method for sequentially inserting precise numbers of the same or different genes into the chromosomes of K. lactis. The analysis of the integration results will address questions regarding the relationship between integrated copy number and growth, expression of the integrated genes, stability, and effects on the host strains.

Katherine Tsai Faculty Mentor: Dr. Richard T. Robertson
Acetylcholinesterase Inhibition on Axon Growth

Acetylcholinesterase is known to degrade the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. However, previous studies have found AChE in neural systems that do not release acetylcholine and do not have receptors for acetylcholine. Previous studies in the Robertson laboratory have identified AChE as a good candidate for being involved in thalamocortical axonal outgrowth and/or target identification. Normally, thalamic neurons extend axons to reach cortical neurons. Thalamic neurons produce AChE and transport the enzyme to the cerebral cortex during thalamocortical axon development. Once thalamocortical axons synapse with cortical neurons, AChE disappears in thalamic neurons. We believe that the function of AChE in this system is to facilitate thalamocortical axon growth. Our hypothesis is that inhibition of AChE activity will disrupt thalamocortical axon growth. To test our hypothesis, dissociated thalamic and cortical neurons will be grown in tandem. To inhibit AChE, we will use antisense oligodeoxynucleotides to block AChE synthesis. Oligodeoxynucleotides prevent translation of mRNA which code for AChE. As control groups, some neurons will receive no oligos and some neurons will receive scrambled oligos nonspecific to AChE. If there is evidence of oligo uptake and AChE inhibition and there are differences in axon morphology between experimental and control groups, we will conclude that AChE does affect axon growth. AChE can be significant in two ways. AChE inhibition can reduce axon growth, indicating that AChE is important in stimulating axon growth. Alternatively, AChE inhibition could result in excessive axon outgrowth past target neurons, indicating that AChE helps axons recognize target neurons.

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Greg M. VanArsdall Faculty Mentor: Dr. Salvatore Maddi

The Influence of Hardiness on Interpersonal Attraction

In our society, mutual attraction is an important prerequisite to the formation of intimate relationships. Predicting the attraction potential between two people is one important goal of courtship behavior and of psychological research. Previous research has demonstrated that similarity on the dimension of physical attractiveness is the strongest known predictor of attraction. Overall personality similarity is also correlated with attraction, but the influence of physical appearances overshadows the influence of personality. If a previously untested personality characteristic exists that has a strong impact on attraction, that characteristic will most likely influence the expression of many other personality variables. Similarity on such a dimension would be a useful index of attraction potential. One characteristic that may fit this description is known as hardiness. Hardiness is a set of beliefs about one's self in relation to the world that places value on commitment, control, and challenge in one's life. In the current study, undergraduates completed the standard hardiness measure known as the Personal Views Survey, after which they attended a social event at which they interacted with the other study participants. Following the event, participants completed the Rubin Interpersonal Scale to ascertain their levels of attraction to the other participants with whom they became acquainted. Analyses of their responses are expected to confirm the hypothesis that people with similar hardiness levels find each other more attractive than people with disparate hardiness levels.

Rosalia Vassallo Faculty Mentor: Dr. Nancy Naples

Feminist Attitude Toward Prostitution

The issue of sex work generally and prostitution specifically has been particularly problematic for feminists, both historically and in current times. Though scholars have attempted to define and provide recommendations for the legal treatment of this profession, unresolved issues about the role of the law in curbing or regulating it remain fundamental tensions in feminist scholarship. The debates over the extend to which government should intervene in prostitution vary greatly among scholars. Some feminist writers who argue that prostitution should be outlawed critique the focus in contemporary law and police practices that single out women for prosecution rather than those who purchase their services. Other writers argue that prostitution should be legalized and that sex workers should obtain protection under the law from violence against them. How feminists and feminist scholars come to assess the role of law enforcement in regulating prostitution is based on some fundamental perception(s) about the "nature" of this profession. This study attempts to correlate perception about prostitution among at least 15 feminists between the ages of 18-25 with dominant perceptions about prostitution in feminist literature from the 1970's to current times. The findings of this study should shed light on feminist attitude toward prostitution, and provide a sense of the crucial role feminist scholarship plays in this ambivalent relationship between prostitution and feminism.

Peter Velazquez Faculty Mentor: Dr. Andrea J. Tenner

Immunohistochemical Localization of an Isomerized Species of the -amyloid Peptide, isoAsp7, in Alzheimer's Disease Brain

ß-amyloid (Aß ) is a 39 -43 amino acid residue peptide that accumulates in the brain of Alzheimer Disease (AD) patients. Aß has been implicated in the progression of AD pathology via its toxicity to neurons and its ability to activate complement. The stable deposition of Aß in AD brain leads to an extended half-life of the peptide that allows for the spontaneous isomerization of the amino acid aspartate in the peptide, including the aspartate residue at position 7 (isoAsp7). Because an increase in the presence of the isoAsp7 containing Aß peptide would be indicative of long term deposition of the peptide, the first goal of the present study is to characterize the presence and distribution of isoAsp7 containing ß-amyloid at different stages of AD dementia. The second specific aim is to determine if inflammatory markers such as activated microglia (a monocyte / macrophage like cell of the central nervous system) are associated to a greater or lesser extent in isoAsp7 containing plaques. Rabbit anti-isoAsp7 polyclonal antibodies were raised and affinity purified by differential adsorption to immobilized Aß containing the isoAsp at residue 7. These anti-isoAsp7 antibodies were depleted of antibodies that cross react with the non-isomerized species of Aß. After verification of specificity of the anti-isoAsp7 antibodies by ELISA, sections of brain from AD and control cases were examined for the presence of this isomerized Aß peptide and subsequently for associated microglia using standard immunohistochemical methods. The results from this study will contribute to the elucidation of how Aß contributes to AD pathology.

Jesus A. Vera Faculty Mentor: Dr. Sujata Tewari

Ethanol Studies on 3(H)-Thymidine Uptake by M-MuLV Infected C6 Astrocytoma and NIH/3T3 Cell Lines

Astrocytes are a specific neuroglial population of the Central Nervous System (CNS) that upon viral exposure can become activated similar to macrophages. Recent studies from this laboratory have demonstrated that the proliferation of C6 glioma cells (transformed astrocytes), as measured by 3[H]-thymidine uptake, was inhibited by in vitro exposure to 100 mM (0.46%) ethanol, a known teratogen and immunosuppressant. However, these adverse effects of ethanol exposure were reversed following the infection of the C6 glioma cell line by the Moloney-Murine Leukemia Virus (M-MuLV), a replication competent mouse retrovirus. The present studies have determined and compared the effects of 72 hours of in vitro ethanol (0.46%) exposure on the uptake of 3[H]-thymidine by M-MuLV infected C6 glioma and NIH/3T3 fibroblast cell lines. Data shows that 3[H]-thymidine incorporation was significantly inhibited in uninfected C6 glioma cells following ethanol exposure. However, a pronounced increase in the 3[H]-thymidine incorporation was demonstrated when the C6 glioma cells were first pre-exposed to ethanol and then infected with M-MuLV. In contrast, the M-MuLV infected fibroblasts showed a marked inhibition of 3[H]-thymidine incorporation following ethanol exposure. Data shows that neural cells respond differently to ethanol than other cell types. Because M-MuLV is a retrovirus similar to HIV, the interactions between ethanol and M-MuLV are important in understanding the progression of AIDS through the CNS. Whether the infectivity of astrocytes or C6 glioma cells is increased by in vitro ethanol exposure of the NIH/3T3 fibroblast cell line containing M-MuLV is now under investigation.

Michael Pascual Villaescusa Faculty Mentor: Dr. Charles E. Wright
 

Selection of Allographs and Size Control Modules in the Hierarchical Process of Handwriting


In 1991, Gerard P. van Galen proposed his revised version of a theoretical model of handwriting. In his model, the writing process is separated into stages, in which specific features of the writing task are divided between these stages. In this study, two of the model's later stages will be studied through various writing task manipulations. The first task will study the Allograph stage, which controls the written style (script or print) and casing (upper- and lower-case) of the output. In this task, the participants will produce a series of three letter string, in which the style and casing of the last two letters have been selectively altered. The second task will study the Size Control Stage, which controls the size of the output. In this task, the subject will produce another series of three letter string, in which the size the last letter has been altered from the previous two letters.

Diamond Vu Faculty Mentor: Dr. Charles E. Wright

Parental Attachment as a Mediator in the Process of Mate Selection

We often grow up wondering who we are going to marry. We often wonder why we choose someone to marry and not another person. What is it that assists us in deciding who to marry and who not to marry? I propose that the level of attachment between a parent and a child will influence how much parental involvement will occur in an individual's mate selection process. In 1967, Hudson and Henze replicated a mate selection study that was used to determine if parents had an influence on who their child chose to marry. Hudson and Henze compared the 1969 generation with the 1956 and 1939 results and found that parents still had an influence over their child's mate selection process. (1969) In my study, I gave out 2 types of questionnaires to about 200 participants. These questionnaires dealt with parental attachment and what the individual was looking for in a potential mate. Parental influence was determined when the participants filled out the mate selection characteristics questionnaires. Three variations of the mate selection questionnaire was given to the individual. Depending on who the individual was filling it out for, the individual had to fill one out for himself, one out in his father's perspective and one out in his mother's perspective. What I found was that the more attached a person was to either parent, the more the parent influenced the individual in mate selection.

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Kevin Jay Wallsten Faculty Mentor: Dr. Russell Dalton

Changes in Environmental Group Membership in Western Europe

The last twenty years have witnessed a significant shift in values of Western industrialized societies from economic to postmaterial concerns. Among the most prominent of these concerns has been environmentalism. Despite this prominence, however, there has been some debate over the extent to which environmentalism remains salient in the West. While some, such as Anna Bramwell, have argued that environmentalism has reached its apex and is now declining, others, like Russell Dalton, claim that the movement has continued its growth. In order to provide an answer to this debate, current environmental group membership data for 55 organizations was collected for nine different Western European nations. This current data was then compared to the 1985 membership data presented in Russell Dalton's The Green Rainbow. The results of this comparison were analyzed for each nation and for Western Europe as a whole in order to provide an understanding of both small and large scale trends in membership. To further this understanding, the causes behind the trends in membership and the growth across groups of similar orientations were also examined. This dual analysis yielded one distinct conclusion: the growth of environmental problems (such as the Chernobyl disaster) has led to a strong, overall increase in environmental group membership in Western Europe over the past decade. Since environmental group membership is inherently related to the strength of the environmental movement, the growth in organizational membership can be seen as providing an answer to the current debate on the vitality of environmentalism in the West.

Nicholas Weinberger Faculty Mentor: Dr. Yong-Ki Kim

Theoretical Calculations of Single Electron Impact Ionization Cross Sections of Molecules

The Binary-encounter-Bathe (BEB) model, a new theoretical model for calculating electron-impact ionization cross sections of molecules, is applied to several atmospheric molecules of interest. This theory provides data for electron-impact ionization cross sections that is obtained using ab-initio methods. With the cuts in research and development funding, computational methods for obtaining this data becomes very important. In this presentation the method for obtaining the cross sections will be discussed, as well as how these cross sections compare with experimental data obtained for the molecules presented.

Lindsey Vanessa Westbrook Faculty Mentor: Dr. Linda Bauer

The Emergence of Native Art Forms in Colonial Peru

A characteristically Native school of painting arose in Cuzco, Peru, between 1680 and 1730. It is most widely known for its extensive use of decorative elements, including birds, flowers, and sobredorado, or surface gilding. These additions, however, are much more than simply expressions of Native aesthetic sensibility--decorative elements injected into primarily-Spanish paintings to give them a Native flavor. Rather, the juxtaposition of these elements--and particularly sobredorado--with other parts of the paintings that resemble Spanish models functions simultaneously as a rebellion against, and a subscription to, Spanish artistic rules, religion, culture, and domination of the societal power structure. Each element of the juxtaposition has various sources, both Native and Spanish. Furthermore, the juxtaposition--and the effects it produces--mirrors similar juxtapositions in other realms of colonial society, such as theatrical productions and religious processions. The paintings of several Native Cuzcoan artists, including Gregorio Gamarra and Diego Quispe Tito, show that sobredorado is much more than a decorative element, and that its presence does not indicate the Natives' lack of education in European artistic techniques. Rather, a re-reading of sobredorado and its function in Native Cuzcoan paintings will allow us to gain a better understanding of Native views of art, religion, politics, and culture in colonial Cuzco.

Angela D. Whipple Faculty Mentor: Dr. Wendy Goldberg

Parental Expectations and Structure Within the Home of Gifted Children

Research has shown that parental expectations significantly influence school grades and achievement of both gifted and non-gifted children (Cornell & Grossberg, 1987; Entwisle & Alexander, 1995; Kellaghan, Sloane, Alvarez, & Bloom, 1993; Kurdek & Sinclair, 1988; Strom, Johnson, Strom, & Strom, 1992). As a group, gifted children may experience a high level of home structure, particularly during homework activities, and this may create an environment for academic success. The parents may have high expectations and positive perceptions of their gifted child, and this may serve as a self-fulfilling prophecy for academic achievement (Jussim, 1986). Therefore, the purpose of this study is to examine the expectations of parents in regard to their gifted child's academic achievement. The extent and type of home structure that supports schoolwork was examined, in addition to parental perceptions of the self-efficacy of the gifted child. Sixty-two surveys were mailed to the parents of 5th and 6th grade gifted students enrolled in a local elementary school and over half of the surveys were returned. Data analysis will address variations in parental perceptions, expectations, and home structure by gender, culture, parental level of education and SES. Limitations include the modest scope of the survey and the select nature of the sample. However, the study is expected to further our understanding of home structure and parental expectations which may assist school districts and teachers as they tailor curricular and homework assignments in order to maximize the academic success of their gifted and non-gifted students.

Rhonda Wofford ( Chapman University) Faculty Mentor: Dr. Bernard McGrane

Society in Advertising

This project begins with the query: "Wouldn't it be better to set up societal values that are achievable and that benefit society and the individual, and not the advertising industry and it's clients?" It explores the advertising industry's influence, control, manipulation, and conditioning of society. It notes that the driving force for advertisements is profit, done without regard to the psychological and societal ramifications. In my presentation I outline the methods by which advertisements play upon the individual's psyche to elicit the desired response (i.e., buy a given product). For example, I explain how perceived physical weaknesses are highlighted and caused to plague us through the use of advertising. These perceived deficiencies are cancerous and motivate us to find a cure. Advertising creates an image for their product that provides us the cure, better yet, a quick fix. Thus, we are caught in a cycle of purchasing products to remedy our perceived problems, which also give us the hope of becoming better, new and improved. The irony is that advertising is what makes us sick, and our self-esteem is the casualty. The net result is the lie sold to us, that after they have attacked our esteem their product can fix our internal issue by resolving our external issue. The final portion of my presentation offers as a solution the notion that the only defense we have is to accept the fact that advertising is a part of our lives. We cannot avoid it, therefore, we must realize the truth: advertising agencies and their clients are concerned with selling the product to make a large monetary gain. In closing, I offer the utopian hypothetical that we as a society need to stop placing a high value on extrinsic factors, and instead place a premium on intrinsic values. Furthermore, if individuals became more concerned with intrinsic values, then advertising agencies their clients would not be as able to influence, control, manipulate, and condition us to purchase their products.

Matthew James Wolken Faculty Mentor: Dr. Joyce Keyak

Prediction of Femoral Strength Using FEA (Effect of Element Size on Model Precision)

Hip fracture is a major concern for persons suffering from decreased bone strength due to osteoporosis. With an increasingly large elderly population in the U.S., the number of persons dealing with loss of bone mass is a major concern in terms of both physical hardship and monetary costs. Current methods for assessing hip strength use two dimensional x-ray imaging to estimate bone density, however, advances in the state of the art have allowed for in vitro modeling of hips using CT scans and computer generated finite element models, which are for this project, developed by Dr. Joyce Keyak. This new breed of hip analysis uses automatically generated finite element analysis models to predict hip strength in selected cases. Testing of these models against mechanical stress tests on human bones have shown that their accuracy is comparable to current methods. The procedure for currently diagnosing high hip fracture probability includes visual inspection of x-rays to simply determine bone density. It does not however, take into consideration bone geometry, loading conditions, or the variation in material properties under a given set of conditions. It is obvious that the computer models should vastly increase the accuracy of predicting hip fracture. Methods of improving these computer generated models in terms of accuracy are of critical importance in advancing their use in the medical field. One possible method of improvement involves the variation of element size in these models for analysis. This particular analysis will include the diminishment of the elements from 3mm cubes to 2.5mm cubes and possibly smaller.

Christa Petrina Worley Faculty Mentor: Dr. Michael Green

Why a History of Filters Along With That History

Many electrical engineering applications today require the use of filters in order to build useful systems. Typically, a digital or analog filter is designed relying on developed techniques, then implemented on a printed circuit board or as an IC. This, in fact, is precisely how I, along with four others, am planning to develop an analog demodulator for a radio frequency (RF) filter. My attempts to design an appropriate analog filter led to several questions about the complications of designing linear and constant phase analog filters as compared with the relative ease of designing digital filters with linear or constant phase. Those questions led to even more questions about filters in general, and encouraged me to shift some of my efforts away from merely completing the design to gaining a sense of the history of filters in order to better understand the causes of the design complications at hand. Through studying the history of filters from its beginnings in mechanical form, to modern electrical devices, an enlarged view is obtained that can conceivably assist in future design.

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