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Undergraduate Library Research Award (ULRA): 2019 ULRA Winners

Upperclassman Winner

Molly Jackson

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Tilanka Chandrasekera

Project Title: Protocol Analysis of the Design Process Based on Extrinsic and Inherent Values

Project Abstract: This paper provides the results of an experiment that analyzed the amount of creativity design students would bring into their problem-solving process, based on their inherent and extrinsic values. The study’s results should show a greater effort on the researchers’ part to identify how design students create, regardless of their learned or naturally creative abilities. For the purpose of this research, it will be assumed that anyone in a design field is innately creative. Freshman and senior level design students from two different programs were asked to solve a simple ill-structured problem. The researchers then dissected the data provided from the studies, given from verbal protocol analysis and fNIR (Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy) imaging, to better understand how innate abilities and learned abilities affect the design process. The data derived from the experiments was coded to compare and contrast the abilities of the freshman who only have inherent knowledge versus the senior level students who have both inherent and extrinsic knowledge. The information provided from the study is vital to design faculty who must teach the design process to novice design students.

Underclassman Winner

Claire Ringer

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Laura Arata

Project Title: I Am Still Myself: How the Dust Bowl Influenced Women's Clothing in Oklahoma

Project Abstract: Traditionally, research over the Dust Bowl has focused on the causes of this ecological disaster and migrant workers, leaving women an understudied component of this story. Because clothing reflects our circumstances, ideals, personalities, social status, and economic status, the study of it helps historians to gain a more well-rounded view of women in the Dust Bowl. The application of the 1930s ideal clothing styles, efforts to remain clean, and the wearing of feed sacks showed that the Dust Bowl did not affect who they were as a group. Through clothing, Oklahoma women defied their circumstances and found that, despite the terrible things happening in the world around them, they were still themselves.

Upperclassman Honorable Mention

Jonathan “Ty” Derouen

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Erika Lutter

Project Title: Protein Kinase A Manipulation by Chlamydia trachomatis During Infection

Project Abstract: The most commonly reported STD in the United States is Chlamydia trachomatis, which can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, tubal infertility and even increased risk of cervical cancer. After infection, manipulation of different protein kinases aid in its replication processes for further development of the pathogen. Protein Kinase A (PKA) is an enzyme in the host cell that phosphorylates other proteins for activation. PKA’s activity is regulated by the changing levels of cyclic AMP within cells. C. trachomatis has been shown to induce PKA activation during infection and the next key steps to understand why and how this happens is to see if there are phosphorylation changes in specific PKA substrates such as CREB and BAD. I hypothesize that the C. trachomatis manipulation of PKA during infection may result in phosphorylation changes in specific PKA substrates that have previously been shown to be involved in cancer development. The overall goal of the project will be to assess the changes of CREB and BAD phosphorylation by SDS-PAGE, western blot analysis during Chlamydia trachomatis infection, as well as using immunofluorescent microscopy to determine if C. trachomatis is actively recruiting specific PKA substrates to the Chlamydial inclusion.