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Shattering Ceilings and Crossing Divides

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Categories: Catholicism, Centers and Institutes, Faculty News, General News, Internationalism, and Research

The tensions inherent in being at once Catholic and American have been palpable and familiar features in the life of the University of Notre Dame from sporadic outbreaks of fisticuffs on campus in the years preceding the Civil War to the controversy which swirled about the 2009 Commencement ceremony at which President Obama received an honorary degree.

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Political Scientist Benjamin Radcliff Studies Unions and Happiness

Categories: Faculty News, General News, Internationalism, and Research

It’s no coincidence that American workers have never been more dissatisfied with their jobs, and labor unions’ membership keeps dropping, according to a new study co-authored by University of Notre Dame political scientist Benjamin Radcliff. Based on a study of unions in 14 nations, Radcliffe found that people who live in countries in which labor union membership was robust were happier—regardless of whether or not they belonged to a labor union themselves.

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Psychologist Darcia Narvaez Studies Violent Video Games' Impact on Kids

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments this week from some 12 states, urging it to uphold a law that bans the sale of violent video games to children younger than 18. The states, including California and Texas, say that banning sales to minors would provide moral and psychological protection. University of Notre Dame Psychology Professor Darcia Narvaez agrees.

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New Book Reevaluates Work of Theologian Hans Frei

Author: Joan Fallon

Categories: Centers and Institutes, Faculty News, General News, and Research

In his new book Toward A Generous Orthodoxy: Prospects for Hans Frei’s Postliberal Theology, just released by Oxford University Press, Jason A. Springs, assistant professor of religion, ethics, and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and the Department of Sociology, reevaluates the work of American theologian Hans Frei.

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Notre Dame Symposium to Address Early Human Experience

Categories: Centers and Institutes, Faculty News, General News, and Research

The University of Notre Dame’s Center for Children and Families is hosting a symposium, Human Nature and Early Experience: Addressing the ‘Environment of Evolutionary Adaptedness,’ October 10 to 12 (Sunday to Tuesday) at McKenna Hall on Notre Dame’s campus. An international collection of renowned scholars from several disciplines will present research on the psychological, anthropological, and biological conditions related to the optimal brain and body system development in human beings.

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Katherine Zieman Awarded National Humanities Center Fellowship

Author: Kate Cohorst

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

Assistant Professor of English Katherine Zieman has been awarded a National Humanities Center Fellowship for work on her next book, Richard Rolle and His Readers: Defining the Literary in the Fifteenth Century. She is one of just 36 fellows selected to spend the 2010-2011 academic year working at the North Carolina-based center.

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Science of Generosity Awards $1.4 Million in Research Grants

Author: Kate Garry

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

The University of Notre Dame’s Science of Generosity Initiative has awarded $1.4 million to nine research projects that will study the origins, manifestations and consequences of generosity. The winning projects were chosen from among 327 proposals by scholars in numerous disciplines in this second phase of research funding. Four projects were funded earlier this year.

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Sociologist Larissa Fast Researches Humanitarian Security

Author: Joan Fallon

Categories: Centers and Institutes, Faculty News, General News, Internationalism, and Research

The U.S. Agency for International Development has awarded Larissa Fast, assistant professor of sociology and conflict resolution at the University of Notre Dame, and her co-investigators from Johns Hopkins University and Save the Children, a grant for research that seeks to increase security for international relief and development agencies worldwide.

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Psychologist Darcia Narvaez Studies Parenting Practices

Author: Kate Garry

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

Ever meet a kindergartener who seemed naturally compassionate and cared about others’ feelings? Who was cooperative and didn’t demand his own way? Chances are, his parents held, carried, and cuddled him a lot; he most likely was breastfed; he probably routinely slept with his parents; and he likely was encouraged to play outdoors with other children, according to new research findings Notre Dame Psychology Professor Darcia F. Narvaez.

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Psychology Grad Student Focuses on Cancer Survivors

Author: Mary Hendriksen

Categories: General News and Research

Cancer is an ominous disease in the modern world. When it strikes, we seek treatment, mourn its all-too frequent victims, and celebrate survivors. It is the survivors who are the research interest of Errol Philip, a fifth-year doctoral student in Notre Dame’s Department of Psychology, now completing a yearlong internship program at the Yale University School of Medicine.

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Economist James Sullivan Says Official Poverty Numbers Misleading

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

The official poverty report the U.S. Census Bureau releases this week is expected to show that the number of Americans defined as poor in 2009 increased by 2 to 3 percentage points—the largest year-to-year increase of the past 50 years. But those figures don’t tell the whole story, says University of Notre Dame economist James Sullivan.

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Senior Thesis Camp Set for Fall Break

Author: Kate Cohorst

Categories: General News and Research

College of Arts and Letters students taking on senior thesis projects this year can accelerate the research and writing process during fall break at Hesburgh Libraries’ first-ever Senior Thesis Camp. “We are excited about this initiative and the support it can offer to seniors writing theses,” says Susan Ohmer, assistant provost and interim director of the Hesburgh Libraries, and a member of the faculty of the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre.

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Psychologist Joshua Diehl Explores Autism Treatment Options

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

Notre Dame Assistant Psychology Professor Joshua Diehl is working to improve communication skills in children with autism, a diagnosis that impacts one out of every 100 children born in this country. “The signature characteristic for all children with autism is difficulty communicating,” Diehl says. “Many of the children desire to be social, but comprehension is a barrier for them. They don’t always understand social conventions or norms.”

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Psychologist Jessica Payne Studies Sleep and Creativity

Author: Kate Garry

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

Research from University of Notre Dame Assistant Psychology Professor Jessica Payne shows that too little sleep causes more than crankiness and tantrums in children: it also results in the inability to process new ideas and be creative. “If children are deprived of adequate sleep, their brains are not as able to make the kinds of connections necessary for learning new ideas,” says Payne, whose research focuses on sleep, memory, and creativity.

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Economist William Evans Finds ADHD Misdiagnosed

Author: Julie Hail Flory

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

From the late 1980s to the early 2000s, the rate of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) diagnosis soared 500 percent. Today, five to 10 percent of all U.S. children between the ages of six and 18 have been diagnosed with ADHD. But according to a recent study led by University of Notre Dame Keough-Hesburgh Professor of Economics William Evans, 1.1 million children may have been misdiagnosed.

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Notre Dame Awarded Mellon Grant for Study on Influence of Religion

Author: Joanna Basile

Categories: Catholicism, Centers and Institutes, Faculty News, General News, and Research

Given the secular nature of many aspects of society, scholars often neglect the role that religion has played—and still plays—in the development of virtually every aspect of civilization. It is impossible to look at world history, politics, or culture without taking into consideration the impact religion has had over the centuries. Now, with a $657,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for a project called “Religion Across the Disciplines,” faculty and graduate students at Notre Dame, along with other leading scholars from around the world, will “examine and report on how religious knowledge can be integrated into the study and teaching of their academic disciplines.”

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Economist Eric Sims Researches “Wait-and-See” Effect

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

New research from the University of Notre Dame casts doubt on a long-held belief in economics that business uncertainty leads to quick drops in economic activity. Published recently by the National Bureau of Economic Research, a study by Notre Dame economist Eric Sims and colleagues from the University of Michigan and the University of Munich found no evidence that increases in uncertainty cause a wait-and-see effect, or slowing of economic activity.

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Mark Cummings Researches Children’s School Performance and Family “Type”

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

The way a family interacts can have more of an impact on a child’s predicted school success than reading, writing, or arithmetic, according to a University of Notre Dame study published recently in the Journal of Child Development. University of Notre Dame Professor of Psychology Mark Cummings and colleagues at the University of Rochester studied the relationship patterns of some 300 families with six year-olds over the course of three years and found distinct family-school connections. Specific family “types” emerged as predictors of school success.

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Researchers Receive Medical Technologies Grants for Indiana-based Initiatives

Author: Nina Welding

Categories: Faculty News, General News, and Research

Three University of Notre Dame faculty members—Basar Bilgicer, Bradley S. Gibson, and Paul Helquist—have been awarded grants from the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (Indiana CTSI) as part of the Collaboration in Translational Research Pilot Program. Another faculty member, Joshua Shrout, received a Young Investigator Basic Science award, and two graduate students—Apryle O’Farrell and James Clancy—have been awarded predoctoral fellowships by the organization.

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Connecting Social Research and Service

Author: Paige Risser

Categories: Centers and Institutes, General News, Internationalism, and Research

Like many good ideas, this one required some financial assistance to get off the ground… Maeve Raphelson ’10 and eight other Notre Dame students had been asked by friend and fellow senior Javier Soegaard to accompany him to Puerto Rico to work with some kids in a local school. Problem was, they couldn’t afford to make the trip. With financial support from the Margaret Eisch Endowment for Excellence in Sociology, Notre Dame’s Campus Ministry, and the Institute for Educational Initiatives, Raphelson, Soegaard, and the other students organized and led a two-day retreat with teens at the Academia del Perpetuo Socorro in San Juan.

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