Academic Minute

Academic Minute
5:00 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Dr. Susan Kalisz, University of Pittsburgh - Recipe for Invasive Plant Species

Species interaction dictates a great deal of a location's biodiversity.

Susan Kalisz, professor of biology at the University of Pittsburgh, is linking the diet of deer to the success of the animals' surrounding flora.

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The Best of Our Knowledge
2:00 am
Wed May 21, 2014

The Best Of Our Knowledge #1235

Any real estate agent will tell you, when you look for a place to live...it's location, location, location. We all like to make a home in a nice, livable neighborhood. But what makes a neighborhood livable? Some extremely small organisms can live in some extremely nasty places.

Today on the Best Of Our Knowledge, our Astrobiology series continues with a look at the extreme environments some microbial life calls home.

We'll also spend an academic minute with science fiction that's not quite fiction any more.

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Dr. Raj Morey, Duke University - Traumatic Brain Injuries

Direct trauma clearly has negative effects on the brain.

Dr. Raj Morey, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University, discusses the potential harm that may arise even from indrect exposure to explosions.

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Dr. Muhammad Khalifa, Michigan State University - Hip Hop Culture Identities

As hip hop culture expands, schools are expanding with it.

Dr. Muhammad Khalifa, assistant professor of educational administration at Michigan State University, is studying this trend.

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Commentary & Opinion
3:50 pm
Thu May 15, 2014

Karen Hitchcock: The Need to Communicate the Crisis Looming For Our Nation’s Research Enterprise

In a recent commentary, I raised the question of whether the United States is losing its global competitiveness in the area of scientific research. And yet, despite the fact that major reductions have been made in our research infrastructure and productivity due to cuts arising from sequestration and over a decade of federal research budgets which have not exceeded inflation, I was startled to learn that “only 38% of Americans feel science [research] is getting too little funding” (reported in The Chronicle of Higher Education article, “Strapped,” February 28, 2014). Why isn’t the message getting out? Why do so few Americans see the risk in falling behind in areas of research critical to understanding disease processes, to addressing environmental issues, to developing alternative energy, and on and on?

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Thu May 15, 2014

Dr. Peter Turchin, UConn - Cliodynamic Models of History

Can math be used to better understand history?

Peter Turchin, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Connecticut, is doing just that through complex mathematical algorithms.

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Dr. Phillip Sponenberg, Virginia Tech - Fainting Goats

The Latin name myotonia congenita might not mean much to you, but you've likely seen them in action.

Dr. Phillip Sponenberg, professor of pathology and genetics at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech, fills us in on one of the internet's favorite animal oddities: the fainting goat.

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The Best of Our Knowledge
2:00 am
Wed May 14, 2014

The Best Of Our Knowledge #1234

Jim Ziolkowski, founder of buildOn
Credit buildOn.org

We’ve heard many times that the key to getting out of poverty is education.

But schools cost money…something that is in short supply in the most impoverished areas of the world.  That’s a problem that Jim Ziolkowski has spent the last 20 years trying to solve. Today on the Best Of Our Knowledge, we’ll hear about the beginnings of the non-profit called buildOn that is helping the poorest around the world find education…including here in the US.

We’ll also spend an academic minute trying to find out what a livable wage looks like.

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Dr. Yehuda Ben-Shahar, Washington University in St. Louis - Hidden Biology of RNAs

RNA seems like the unsung little brother of DNA and protein.

But Yehuda Ben-Shahar, assistant professor of biology at Washington University in St. Louis, is learning a great deal about their very important molecular responsibilities.

Dr. Yehuda Ben-Shahar is an assistant professor of biology at Washington University in St. Louis. His research focuses on the roles of genes, genetics, and evolution in shaping and driving specific animal behaviors. He earned a PhD from the University of Illinois in 2002.

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Academic Minute
5:00 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Dr. Chris Fee, Gettysburg College - What a Living Wage Looks Like

Economic inequality and minimum wage are becoming increasingly discussed topics during these turbulent economic times.

Chris Fee, professor of English at Gettysburg College, asks what constitutes a living wage?

Dr. Christopher Fee is a professor and chair of the Department of English at Gettysburg College. Fee has published numerous articles and has given conference presentations on many interdisciplinary topics. He earned his PhD in English at the University of Glasgow.

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