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Using Graphene as a Flex Resistor to Detect Biodynamics

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Over the past 30 years the use of graphene has been increasing at a rapid rate. The reason why graphene has become more popular is because it is starting to be understood better, and researchers are starting to recognize graphene’s

Over the past 30 years the use of graphene has been increasing at a rapid rate. The reason why graphene has become more popular is because it is starting to be understood better, and researchers are starting to recognize graphene’s unique properties. Graphene is a single atomic layer of graphite, and graphite is a three-dimensional cube base structure of carbon. Graphite has a high conductivity rate, and graphene has an even higher conductivity, meaning that graphene makes for an excellent resistor in any hardware system. Graphene is flexible, has high durability, and can vary in resistance based on its shape (Sharon 2015). With graphene being able to change its resistivity, it can act as different types of sensors. These sensors include measuring pressure, resistance, force, strain, and angle. One problem across the globe is that patients have arthritis, decaying bone density, and injuries which can easily go mistreated or not treated at all. It can be hard to determine the severity of injuries in joints by observation of the patient. There are tools and equipment that will allow a doctor to track the force and degrees of motion of certain joints, but they are mostly limited to hospitals. With graphene acting as a sensor it can be embedded into casts, braces, and even clothing. With a mobile sensor that relays accurate and continuous data to a doctor they can more precisely determine a therapy or recovery time that will better suit the patients’ needs. In this project the graphene was used to measure the angle of a patient’s wrist while they were wearing a wrist brace. From the data collected, the graphene was able to track the user’s movement of their wrist as they moved it in a single direction. The data showed the angle of the wrist ranging from zero degrees to 90 degrees. This proves that graphene can shape the way biosensing is accomplished. Biodynamics is a growing field, and with more injuries everyday it is important to study graphene and how it can be used to diagnose and prevent injuries related to joints. Graphene can be used as a biosensor which can then be implemented into a brace to allow for accurate biodynamic tracking.

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2020-05

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Does chronic unpredictable restraint produce dendritic retraction in long-shaft CA3 hippocampal neurons?

Description

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a widespread mood disorder that affects more than 300 million people worldwide and yet, high relapse rates persist. This current study aimed to use an animal model for depression, unpredictable intermittent restraint (UIR), to investigate

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a widespread mood disorder that affects more than 300 million people worldwide and yet, high relapse rates persist. This current study aimed to use an animal model for depression, unpredictable intermittent restraint (UIR), to investigate changes in a subset of neurons within the hippocampus, a region of high susceptibility in MDD. Adult male and female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to four treatment groups based on sex (n = 48, n = 12/group). Half of the rats underwent UIR that involved restraint with orbital shaking (30 min or 1 h) for 2-6 consecutive days, followed by one or two days of no stressors; the other half of the rats were undisturbed (CON). UIR rats were stressed for 28 days (21 days of actual stressors) before behavioral testing began with UIR continuing between testing days for nearly 70 days. Rats were then euthanized between 9 and 11 days after the last UIR session. Brains were processed for Golgi stain and long-shaft (LS) neurons within the hippocampal CA3a and CA3b regions were quantified for dendritic complexity using a Camera Lucida attachment. Our findings failed to support our hypothesis that UIR would produce apical dendritic retraction in CA3 hippocampal LS neurons in both males and females. Given that UIR failed to produce CA3 apical dendritic retraction in males, which is commonly observed in the literature, we discuss several reasons for these findings including, time from the end of UIR to when brains were sampled, and the effects of repeated cognitive testing. Given our published findings that UIR impaired spatial ability in males, but not females, we believe that UIR holds validity as a chronic stress paradigm, as UIR attenuated body weight gain in both males and females and produced reductions in thymus gland weight in UIR males. These findings corroborate UIR as an effective stressor in males and warrant further research into the timing of UIR-induced changes in hippocampal CA3 apical dendritic morphology.

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2020-12

Descent: A Modern Television Adaptation of Dante's Inferno

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Descent is a modern television adaptation of Dante's Inferno, in which the main characters must navigate the levels of the Dark Web instead of Hell. This Creative Project includes the script for the first episode of this series, as well

Descent is a modern television adaptation of Dante's Inferno, in which the main characters must navigate the levels of the Dark Web instead of Hell. This Creative Project includes the script for the first episode of this series, as well as episode summaries for each of the 10 episodes in the first season.

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2020-12

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Rainbow Rhetoric: LGBTQ+ Media Discourse and Implications

Description

Aside from uplifting and tearing down the mood of a young LGBTQ+ kid, journalistic media has the potential to alter the way audiences understand and react to individuals of the LGBTQ+ community. Looking at the rhetorical approaches, frameworks, and expanded

Aside from uplifting and tearing down the mood of a young LGBTQ+ kid, journalistic media has the potential to alter the way audiences understand and react to individuals of the LGBTQ+ community. Looking at the rhetorical approaches, frameworks, and expanded narratives of news sources, this project engages with the concepts of same-sex marriage, lifestyles, bans, and children in education in order to attain an understanding of what media messages are being shared, how they are being communicated, and what the implications of such rhetoric are. Summary of the findings:
• Same-sex marriage as the win that cannot be repeated.
Infamously known as the central legal battle for the LGBTQ+ community, same-sex marriage finds itself in many political speeches, campaigns, and social commentaries. Interestingly, after being legalized through a Supreme Court decision in the United States, Same-Sex Marriage finds itself framed as the social inevitability that should not be repeated in politics or any legal shift. In other words, “the gays have won this battle, but not the war.”
• There are risks around the “LGBTQ+ lifestyle” and its careful catering to an elite minority and the mediation through bans.
The risks of the LGBTQ+ “lifestyle” date back far, with many connotations being attached to being LGBTQ+ (AIDS epidemics, etc.). In modern journalism, many media outlets portray LGBTQ+ individuals to be a tiny minority (.001% according to some) that demands the whole society to adhere to their requests. This framework portrays the LGBTQ+ community as oppressors and obsessed advocates that can never “seem to get enough” (ex: more than just marriage). The bans are framed as the neutralizing factor to the catering.
• LGBTQ+ children and topics in academic and social spaces are the extreme degree.
When it comes to LGBTQ+ issues and conversations as they revolve around children, media outlets have some of the most passionate opinions about them. Often portrayed as “the line that shouldn’t be crossed,” LGBTQ+ issues, as they find themselves in schools and other spaces, are thus portrayed as bearable to a certain degree, never completely. Claims of indoctrination are also presented prominently even when institutional efforts are to protect LGBTQ+ kids.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Running a Charitable Organization While Navigating Regulations Within an Academic Institution

Description

In this creative project, our goal was to establish a student lead service organization dedicated to raising money and awareness for a selected medical issue through an interactive carnival event. In doing so, we were able to identify the potential

In this creative project, our goal was to establish a student lead service organization dedicated to raising money and awareness for a selected medical issue through an interactive carnival event. In doing so, we were able to identify the potential obstacles and pathways that are required for service organizations within Arizona State University. Our experience provides a guideline for future students looking to organize charitable events on campus. This paper discusses several essential skills for running a charitable student organization, including establishing a brand, managing finances, cultivating business relationships, and marketing the cause. It is our hope that future students can learn from our experience and find success in similar endeavors.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Understanding and Predicting Persistence in First Year Engineering Students

Description

Based on James Marcia's theory, identity development in youth is the degree to which one has explored and committed to a vocation [1], [2]. During the path to an engineering identity, students will experience a crisis, when one's values and

Based on James Marcia's theory, identity development in youth is the degree to which one has explored and committed to a vocation [1], [2]. During the path to an engineering identity, students will experience a crisis, when one's values and choices are examined and reevaluated, and a commitment, when the outcome of the crisis leads the student to commit to becoming an engineer. During the crisis phase, students are offered a multitude of experiences to shape their values and choices to influence commitment to becoming an engineering student. Student's identities in engineering are fostered through mentoring from industry, alumni, and peer coaching [3], [4]; experiences that emphasize awareness of the importance of professional interactions [5]; and experiences that show creativity, collaboration, and communication as crucial components to engineering. Further strategies to increase students' persistence include support in their transition to becoming an engineering student, education about professional engineers and the workplace [6], and engagement in engineering activities beyond the classroom. Though these strategies are applied to all students, there are challenges students face in confronting their current identity and beliefs before they can understand their value to society and achieve personal satisfaction. To understand student's progression in developing their engineering identity, first year engineering students were surveyed at the beginning and end of their first semester. Students were asked to rate their level of agreement with 22 statements about their engineering experience. Data included 840 cases. Items with factor loading less than 0.6 suggesting no sufficient explanation were removed in successive factor analysis to identify the four factors. Factor analysis indicated that 60.69% of the total variance was explained by the successive factors. Survey questions were categorized into three factors: engineering identity as defined by sense of belonging and self-efficacy, doubts about becoming an engineer, and exploring engineering. Statements in exploring engineering indicated student awareness, interest and enjoyment within engineering. Students were asked to think about whether they spent time learning what engineers do and participating in engineering activities. Statements about doubts about engineering to engineering indicated whether students had formed opinions about their engineering experience and had understanding about their environment. Engineering identity required thought in belonging and self-efficacy. Belonging statements called for thought about one's opinion in the importance of being an engineer, the meaning of engineering, an attachment to engineering, and self-identification as an engineer. Statements about self-efficacy required students to contemplate their personal judgement of whether they would be able to succeed and their ability to become an engineer. Effort in engineering indicated student willingness to invest time and effort and their choices and effort in their engineering discipline.

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2018-05

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Can You See Me?: Stories to Fight Erasure

Description

There has been a recent push for queer fiction, especially in the young adult genre, whose focus is gay and lesbian relationships. This growth is much needed in terms of visibility and the furthering of acceptance, but there are still

There has been a recent push for queer fiction, especially in the young adult genre, whose focus is gay and lesbian relationships. This growth is much needed in terms of visibility and the furthering of acceptance, but there are still subjects within the LGBTQ+ community that need to be addressed, including bisexual, asexual, and non-binary erasure. There are many people who claim that these identities do not exist, are labels used as a stepping stone on one's journey to discovering that they are homosexual, or are invented excuses for overtly promiscuous or prudish behavior. The existence of negative stereotypes, particularly those of non-binary individuals, is largely due to a lack of visibility and respectful representation within media and popular culture. However, there is still a dearth of non-binary content in popular literature outside of young adult fiction. Can You See Me? aims to fill the gap in bisexual, asexual, and non-binary representation in adult literature. Each of the four stories that make up this collection deals with an aspect of gender and/or sexuality that has been erased, ignored, or denied visibility in American popular culture. The first story, "We'll Grow Lemon Trees," examines bisexual erasure through the lens of sociolinguistics. A bisexual Romanian woman emigrates to Los Angeles in 1989 and must navigate a new culture, learn new languages, and try to move on from her past life under a dictatorship where speaking up could mean imprisonment or death. The second story "Up, Down, All Around," is about a young genderqueer child and their parents dealing with microaggressions, examining gender norms, and exploring personal identity through imaginary scenarios, each involving an encounter with an unknown entity and a colander. The third story, "Aces High," follows two asexual characters from the day they're born to when they are 28 years old, as they find themselves in pop culture. The two endure identity crises, gender discrimination, erasure, individual obsessions, and prejudice as they learn to accept themselves and embrace who they are. In the fourth and final story, "Mile Marker 72," a gay Mexican man must hide in plain sight as he deals with the death of his partner and coming out to his best friend, whose brother is his partner's murderer.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Engineering a Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell (hiPSC)-Based Model of Alzheimer's Disease

Description

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) affects over 5 million individuals in the U.S. and has a direct cost estimated in excess of $200 billion per year. Broadly speaking, there are two forms of AD—early-onset, familial AD (FAD) and late-onset-sporadic AD (SAD). Animal

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) affects over 5 million individuals in the U.S. and has a direct cost estimated in excess of $200 billion per year. Broadly speaking, there are two forms of AD—early-onset, familial AD (FAD) and late-onset-sporadic AD (SAD). Animal models of AD, which rely on the overexpression of FAD-related mutations, have provided important insights into the disease. However, these models do not display important disease-related pathologies and have been limited in their ability to model the complex genetics associated with SAD.

Advances in cellular reprogramming, have enabled the generation of in vitro disease models that can be used to dissect disease mechanisms and evaluate potential therapeutics. To that end, efforts by many groups, including the Brafman laboratory, to generated patient-specific hiPSCs have demonstrated the promise of studying AD in a simplified and accessible system. However, neurons generated from these hiPSCs have shown some, but not all, of the early molecular and cellular hallmarks associated with the disease. Additionally, phenotypes and pathological hallmarks associated with later stages of the human disease have not been observed with current hiPSC-based systems. Further, disease relevant phenotypes in neurons generated from SAD hiPSCs have been highly variable or largely absent. Finally, the reprogramming process erases phenotypes associated with cellular aging and, as a result, iPSC-derived neurons more closely resemble fetal brain rather than adult brain.

It is well-established that in vivo cells reside within a complex 3-D microenvironment that plays a significant role in regulating cell behavior. Signaling and other cellular functions, such as gene expression and differentiation potential, differ in 3-D cultures compared with 2-D substrates. Nonetheless, previous studies using AD hiPSCs have relied on 2-D neuronal culture models that do not reflect the 3-D complexity of native brain tissue, and therefore, are unable to replicate all aspects of AD pathogenesis. Further, the reprogramming process erases cellular aging phenotypes. To address these limitations, this project aimed to develop bioengineering methods for the generation of 3-D organoid-based cultures that mimic in vivo cortical tissue, and to generate an inducible gene repression system to recapitulate cellular aging hallmarks.

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2018-05

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Promoting Gender Inclusion in Engineering Through Children's Literature

Description

Engineering is a heavily male-dominated field and females are significantly less likely to choose an engineering-related major or career path. At the age of six years old, females start believing that their male peers are smarter than them, leading them

Engineering is a heavily male-dominated field and females are significantly less likely to choose an engineering-related major or career path. At the age of six years old, females start believing that their male peers are smarter than them, leading them to pursue less ambitious careers. The children's book Lyla B. An Engineering Legacy was created to encourage more young girls to discover their own potential and pursue engineering as a career. To explore the efficacy of the book on its target consumers, a pilot study was performed with first and second grade children. The participants' engineering knowledge; fixed and failure mindset beliefs; STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) interest, competency, and career aspirations; and stereotype beliefs were evaluated before and after being read the book to determine if the story has a positive impact on children. Additionally, the satisfaction of the participants towards both the book and main character were analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively. Overall, the results of the study suggest that the book has a positive impact on the interest and competency of STEM fields and the stereotype beliefs that the children had towards engineers. The study also suggests that the book decreases fixed and failure mindsets and that the participants were satisfied with the overall concept of the book and main character, Lyla.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Film Buff Reviews Stuff: A Film Review Blog

Description

This creative project centers on creating evaluative writing about film, in the form of a film review blog. Preliminary writing was done, in which the distinction was made between critical film writing and movie reviewing, as well as an analysis

This creative project centers on creating evaluative writing about film, in the form of a film review blog. Preliminary writing was done, in which the distinction was made between critical film writing and movie reviewing, as well as an analysis of how film critics have honed in their criticism and what makes their content effective for their audience. The rest of the writing for this project consists of a total of 15 reviews for 15 different movies released in 2017 and 2018. In these reviews, there is a brief introduction of the plot and context in which the film is made, followed by an evaluative analysis of what made the film effective or ineffective in achieving its artistic goals. The reviews involve an amalgamation of the content and topics taught in the Film and Media Studies program at Arizona State University, from screenwriting to cinematography. This process of writing reviews and being edited by the Director and Second Reader allows for the opportunity to find a unique writing voice and create content that is accessible for the wide audience that would be reading the work. All of the writing completed for this project (except for the "My Favorite Film Critics" piece) is compiled together in a WordPress blog, in an easily readable and accessible format. The blog itself serves as a way to reach the desired audience, as well as entice them to engage with the writing and the films being written about. This includes providing images and trailers for each respective film, to add a visual component to the writing. The final product is a unique way to engage with the content taught in the Film and Media Studies program, while simultaneously building a portfolio of writing that will be expanded upon and continued in the future.

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Date Created
2018-05