Research Assistantships (Spring 2013)

********The deadline to apply for Spring 2013 has now passed.*********

All research assistantships for the upcoming semester can be found on this page.  Please scroll through to find one that’s interesting to you.  If you find one, apply!

Students can find the online application here.

Applications are due by Friday, October 26th, 2012 for Spring 2013 research assistantship opportunities. For more information or questions about undergraduate research through the University Honors Program, please go here or contact Catherine Chandler at cbrady@gwu.edu.

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General Humanities

Project: Neuroaesthetic and the Humanities

Professor: Marshall Alcorn (alcornma@gwu.edu)

Description: 

“I am finalizing a manuscript to be published by Palgrave press in Sept 2013. The central argument of the book is that new information must often be “”emotionally assimilated”” through a process of reverie and reflection. These experience need to be built into humanities education. Much of my argument comes from work in neurobiology on right brain left brain interaction. Recently a new discipline termed “”neuroaesthetics”” has gathered data to support the human need for aesthetic experience to make information fully integrated into neural networks. ”

Research Assistant Tasks: I need someone to gather published literature on neuroscience and write summaries of some essays that would be part of a discussion with me.  I also need someone to do some limited proofing of documentation my current manuscript.

Average Time Commitment: 1-3 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

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Project: Writing Hollywood

Professor: Patricia Phalen (phalen@gwu.edu)

SMPA

Description: This is a study of Hollywood television writers – the professional culture and political logic of their work process.  I have interviewed 50 writers and now it’s time to dig in and 1) analyze the interview texts and 2) build their story – including the history of the craft, the link between the group writing process and the content we see on television, and the socioeconomic factors that shape and maintain the process.  It’s a great opportunity for anyone interested in how Hollywood “works” and who are the creative forces behind their favorite programs!

Research Assistant Tasks: I ‘m looking for a research assistant who loves popular culture…all things Hollywood, especially television!  I need someone who is a relentless researcher – who doesn’t stop at just finding “something” but keeps digging until all avenues are covered.  This student will work with me to find: archives that house relevant collections donated by Hollywood writers;  information about the TV writing process and how it has changed since the 1950’s; and every type of description, analysis and critique of television writers.

Average Time Commitment: 10 or more hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Project: Anti-Slavery Images, 1830s-1840s

Professor: Prof. Phillip Troutman (trout@gwu.edu)

UWP (project is in History)

Description: In 1835 anti-slavery activists in New York City mailed out over 1 million newspapers and tracts across the country–the US’s first direct mail campaign. Two of their major periodicals featured images–The Anti-Slavery Record and a juvenile tract, The Slave’s Friend. I am researching this pioneering use of images in the era before Uncle Tom’s Cabin, with its sentimental and often docile images of African Americans, changed the cultural landscape. Unlike the 1850s images, those in the 1830s featured slaves and free blacks in more active roles, fighting slave-catchers and actively working against slavery. This is a book-length study focusing closely on the images produced by the American Anti-Slavery Association (AASS) from its inception in 1833 into the 1840s, when a rift in leadership shifted the themes of its images. The study involves close analysis of the images themselves as well as reading manuscript materials (letters, journals) and period literature (newspapers, books, tracts) pertaining to the values behind the images–what the creators intended the images to represent and what effect they hoped they would have on viewers.

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistant will visit the Library of Congress to survey three types of collections, in order of importance: (1.) In manuscripts, you will scan through relevant segments of the Lewis Tappan papers (on microfilm), scanning for references to images in The Slave’s Friend (which Tappan edited), to Elizur Wright (who commissioned many of their images), or to other prints produced by the AASS. You will also be looking for references to Patrick Henry Reason, New York’s first known African American engraver, and looking for examples of the letterhead he produced, which Tappan sometimes used. (2.) In prints and engravings, you will research the LOC catalogs for all stand-alone images published by the AASS; you will take digital pictures of these and create a detailed list of them. (3.) In books, you will do more or less the same, looking through books and pamphlets published by AASS, looking for those that include images and documenting those. Time permitting, there may be other similar work in other local archives. I will be accompanying you on at least the first LOC trip, to do any research training and offering tips as needed for the project. We will be meeting regularly thereafter. Hours are an estimate; if the student wants more hours, I think that can be arranged, and we can assign credit hours as appropriate to the number of hours worked and/or continue the assistantship in subsequent terms.

Average Time Commitment: 1-3 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 1

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Project: The Science and Politics of Empathy

Professor: Jamie Cohen-Cole (jcohencole@gwu.edu)

American Studies

Description: This project examines the multiple and interconnected roles played by intersubjective empathy in the last fifty years. This capacity has not only come to mark off the boundaries between health and pathology, but has also served as a means for distinguishing humans from machines and other organisms, as a criterion for policing gender norms, and as a cultural orientation associated with liberal politics. Indeed, psychiatrists, neurologists, and pediatricians has used lack of empathy as a marker of autism spectrum disorders, sociopathy, and trauma. Yet empathy has become a swear word for conservative politicians. What happened? Is empathy indeed a marker of human heath? Or is it a liberal value? Or both?

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistant will help locate, identify, track, and categorize the use of “empathy” and related terms in popular media, both print and broadcast, over the last 50 years.

Average Time Commitment: 4-6 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Project: Intraindividual Differences in Habitualness

Professor: Leigh Alison Phillips (laphillips@gwu.edu)

Psychology (Applied Social Psychology area)

Description: To optimally prevent and/or manage chronic illnesses, individuals need to develop long-term health habits. That is, initiation of health behaviors is not enough to reap the benefits of those behaviors–maintenance of those behaviors, as habits, is required. Researchers have shown that habits are triggered through context cues in their environment and have suggested that interventions to develop habits should help individuals set up automatic cue-behavior links. I hypothesize that the time of day will influence the effectiveness of such interventions to the extent that there are intra- (within) individual differences in habitualness by time of day.

Before an experimental test of interventions given at different times of day can be implemented, we first need to see whether there are in fact intra-individual differences in habitualness over the course of the day. The hypothesis tested by this study is that individuals will be more habitual in their behaviors in the beginning of their days than in the middle or ends of their days. If this hypothesis is supported, the results would suggest that interventions to develop habits would be best implemented in the beginning of the day.

This project involves having participants keep daily diaries for the period of 3 days to a week. In their diaries, they will record their daily activities and contextual information for those activities: time, nature, location, and duration of activity, as well as the presence of other people during the activity. Stability of contexts and behaviors across the days of the study will be calculated for each individual for the first, middle, and last thirds of their days. Stability is hypothesized to be greatest in the first compared to the middle or last thirds of the day, on average.

Moderators, including individuals’ preference for time of day (whether they consider themselves to be “morning persons” or “evening persons”) and personality factors such as conscientiousness, will be tested.

Lastly, we will test the hypothesis that those who perform behaviors of interest in the first third of the day will be more consistent (have stronger habits) in their performance of that behavior than will individuals who perform the behaviors in the middle, last, or across different thirds of the day. The behaviors we test will be exercising and taking medications/supplements, if applicable. Objective measures will be collected for a subset of participants and will include use of an accelerometer (to measure physical activity) and use of an electronic monitoring pill bottle (to measure medication/supplement adherence).

Research Assistant Tasks: Research assistants on this project will be involved in every aspect of the project: recruiting participants (students and staff/faculty from GW), administering the study to participants (meeting with participants in groups to explain to them the daily diary, the accelerometer, and the pill bottle, where applicable), following up with participants to make sure they are following the study protocol, analyzing data, and writing up the results for presentation at a conference (student as first author) and for publication (student as co-author).

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Life Sciences:

Project: Web-based Spectral Simulation

Professor: Professor Miller (houston@gwu.edu)

Description:

Predicting how light interacts with molecules is an important part of modeling climate change and in developing sensors for measuring gasses in the atmosphere (or anywhere else for that matter). My lab develops laser-based sensors for applications to biotechnology, atmospheric physics and chemistry, and combustion and industrial measurements. An important part of that work is in the interpretation of signals we measure and this process relies on modeling in gruesome detail what spectra will look like. The good news is that we have this all pretty well figured out and use original software to do that. However, as time marches on, other researchers have wanted us to share with them our simulation software. That has lead to tremendous problems in “version control”: how do we maintain an ever-evolving software package on many different operating systems running on machines in many different labs? The simplest answer may be to restructure the software as a server-based web application.

Research Assistant Tasks:

It is not necessary for the Research Assistant to know anything about spectroscopy and lasers (but we will be happy to tell them more). However, I am looking for someone with web programming skills, particularly if they include familiarity with a PHP/MySQL environment. (Part of the plan is to port the basic spectral data into a SQL data base model.) The current program is written in Object Pascal, which is close enough to C++ to make knowledge of almost any other object oriented language adequate to perform the translation. I foresee the following steps in the process. First, port the database and demonstrate basic queries to extract spectral data. Next, translate the simulation software into PHP to simulate spectra. Finally, pretty it all up using modern charts in a handsome interface. (We are using the javascript package Highcharts to merge dynamic charts into PHP in other projects.)

Average Time Commitment: 4-6 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 2 credits

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Project: Novel Arginine Biosynthsis Pathway

Professor: Professor Shi (dshi@cnmcresearch.org)

Description:

Depatment of Integrative Systems Biology

Our lab focuses on the enzymes in two related pathways: (1) Urea cycle; (2) Arginine biosynthetic pathway. Urea cycle, a major pathway for the detoxification of ammonia in mammalian, involves six enzymes. Deficiency of one of these enzymes will cause urea cycle disorder. Hyperammonemia that is caused by the urea cycle disorder can lead to mental retardation or death. Dr. Shi is currently focusing on the structural and functional research of ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC), carbamyl phosphate synthetase and N-acetyl-L-glutamate synthetase (NAGS). Arginine biosynthetic pathway involves eight enzymatic steps to convert glutamate to arginine. The bacterial arginine biosynthetic pathway uses part of the same enzymes as those in the urea cycle. In this line of research, we focus on the structural and functional research of OTCase-like proteins such as recently discovered novel N-acetyl-L-ornithine and N-succinyl-L-ornithine transcarbamylases, and bifunctional N-acety-L-lglutamate synthase/kinase and N-acetyl-L-ornithine/N-acetyl-L-citrulline deacetylase. Our lab integrates the tools of X-ray crystallography, protein biochemistry and molecular biology into an analysis of the role of enzymes in nitrogen metabolism.  The specific project for the potential honor student is to discover and characterize a novel arginine pathway in some microorganisms via proteinaceous N-modification.

Research Assistant Tasks:

The potential students can help to clone the genes into expression vector, to express the protein in large scale, to purify protein using FPLC to >95% purity, to characterize protein using various kinds of assay methods and biological tools, and to crystallize the protein for x-ray structural study.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 2

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Project: Maternal Determinants of Neural Fate

Professor: Sally A. Moody (samoody@gwu.edu)

Anatomy and Regenerative Biology

Description: In many animals, several developmental events are regulated by locally sequestered maternal mRNAs that play critical roles in specifying the primordial germ cells, the body axes and the embryonic endoderm. In the frog Xenopus laevis, we found that a large number of maternal mRNAs of unknown developmental function are highly enriched in the animal blastomere precursors of the ectoderm. Our previous experiments indicate that the subset of these blastomeres that give rise to the nervous system are biased by maternal factors to express a neural fate prior to the neural inductive events that occur during gastrulation. Surprisingly, little is known about the identity of the factors involved or the molecular mechanisms by which neural fate bias is achieved. The goals of this research project are to: 1) identify which maternal mRNAs enriched in the animal blastomeres of the cleavage stage Xenopus embryo are necessary and sufficient to instruct their descendant cells to express a neural fate; and 2) elucidate the molecular mechanism(s) by which these factors act. We will utilize a novel explant culture system in which specific Xenopus blastomeres that are precursors of the neural plate or the epidermis are isolated from the endogenous signaling centers of the intact embryo. It is anticipated that this information will be useful for directing embryonic stem cells to a neural or epidermal fate for regenerative therapies.

Research Assistant Tasks: The RA will learn basic molecular biology techniques so they can amplify plasmid DNA, purify it, and use it as a template for synthesizing mRNA. They will learn to microinject embryonic blastomeres with mRNA and DNA. They will prepare all solutions used in these techniques. They will learn to dissect blastomeres away from injected embryos and culture them. They will learn how to process explant blastomeres for in situ hybridization assays.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

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Project: Facial, mandibular and dental integration

Professor: Bernard Wood, Mark Grabowski (bernardawood@gmail.com)

Center for the Advanced Study of Hominin Paleobiology

Description: The goal of this project is to quantify skeletal traits on the skull of modern humans, to complement existing data from other primates. This project will familiarize the student with measuring and landmarking 2 and 3-dimensional scans as well as contribute to a collaborative study on human and primate evolution. Specifically, the student will learn to use AMIRA data visualization software and assorted other related programs to collect data that will be used in the broader analysis.

Research Assistant Tasks:  See above. The student must be reliable and somewhat technologically adept, but training will be provided.

Average Time Commitment: 10 or more hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Project: Biographical Research for the Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Human Evolution

Professor: Bernard Wood

Center for the Advanced Study of Hominin Paleobiology

Description: I am editing the Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Human Evolution. I am looking for an RA to develop the biography section, in terms of creating new biographies and to seek out images and information to further contribute to existing biographies.

Research Assistant Tasks:  See above.  It might interest a history student, or a student interested in science.

Average Time Commitment: Up to 10  hours per week, flexible

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Mathematics and Economics

Project: Global Economic and Financial Policy

Professor: Professor Ray (korok@gwu.edu)

Description:

Professor Korok Ray of GWSB seeks to conduct research on the global fiscal and financial crisis. He seeks to understand how different nations have responded to these twin crises over the past four years, such as the U.S, Spain, Iceland, Sweden, and Greece. Each of these countries has had a financial crisis, a fiscal crisis, or both. The objective is to produce both academic research and a policy brief discussing the linkages between the fiscal and financial policy. In short, what is the relationship between bank bailouts and the federal budget. That is the question this project seeks to answer.

This is the biggest issue on the global economic scene at the moment, and Washington is a great place to study this given the proximity to power and policy. The work will make use of our favorable location to get traction on the biggest question of the day.

Research Assistant Tasks:

The research assistant must have skills in assembling information from the internet, reviewing large amounts of economic and financial press, scouring briefs from the policy world, editing, typing and proofreading text, and conducting preliminary and elementary data analysis in Microsoft Excel. The primary requirement is the student have an interest in economic and financial policy and be willing to dig into the large volume of publicly available documents to get at truth. If successful, the research assistant can also accompany me in meetings with policymakers in Washington based on my network of contacts from my time in the White House.

The most important skill is that the research assistant be motivated, self-directed and entrepreneurial. I don’t have the time to babysit or micromanage. Instead, the research assistant needs to take an active role in acquiring information and thinking through the project at a high level. I look for creativity, energy, enthusiasm and motivation, above all else.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

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Project: Knot Theory: Editing and Programming

Professor: Professor Przytycki (przytyck@gwu.edu)

Description:

Professor Przytycki is writing a book on Knot Theory, and he needs help.   This research assistant will learn some Knot Theory and Graph Theory and gain experience with with the process of book publication.

The book will be published by Cambridge University Press so if it is successful you can gain some fame 🙂

Research Assistant Tasks:

If you know programming you will be involved in computing knot invariants or if you prefer in drawing graphs related to knots.
If you are more theory inclined you will learn some knot theory an graph theory and help me with editing book and preparing tables of knots and graphs.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Medicine and Public Health

Project: Identification of miRNA Biomarkers in Early Breast Cancer

Professor: Professor Fu (sfu@gwu.edu)

Description:

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a highly abundant class of endogenous non-coding RNAs (18–25 nucleotides in length), which contributes to cancer initiation and progression, and are differentially expressed in normal tissues and cancers. They regulate gene expression by silencing the expression of their target genes post-transcriptionally, causing either mRNA molecule degradation or translational inhibition. Many miRNAs have been implicated in several cancers, including breast cancer. Over the past few years, miRNA profiling studies have led to the identification of miRNAs that are aberrantly expressed in human breast cancer. They can function as either tumor suppressors or oncogenes. Thus, tumor formation, progression and metastasis may arise from a suppression or deletion of tumor suppressor miRNAs and/ or overexpression or amplification of an oncogenic miRNA. Since early detection of the preneoplastic lesion remains the key to improving patient outcomes and survival, reducing patient suffering and costs, new biomarkers to differentiate between benign and precancancerous lesions would aid in effective intervention, precvention and treatment. Intraductal epithelial proliferations of the breast are classified into three groups histologically and clinically. They are ductal epithelial hyperplasia (DEH), atypical ductal hyperplasia (ADH) and ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). A woman with DEH has a slightly higher chance of developing breast cancer while ADH is a precancerous lesion that increases the risk by 4-5 folds. While DEH is morphologically and phenotypically heterogeneous, ADH and established DCIS are homogeneous in cell type and marker expression. To better understand the progression of breast cancer development and distinguish among the DEH, ADH and DCIS conditions, we propose to identify and validate the miRNA biomarkers from the Formalin-Fixed, Paraffin-Embedded (FFPE) breast tissues. The goal of this project is to enhance discoveries and knowledge of miRNA dysregulation in early stage disease progression and to develop novel approaches for the prevention, diagnosis, prognosis, monitoring and therapy of cancer. Overall goals include the development, validation, and commercialization of diagnosis tests for miRNAs and implementation of therapeutic approaches involving miRNAs as novel strategies for cancer therapy.

Research Assistant Tasks:

Research assistant will work in a molecular biology / genomics lab. Specific techniques involved will be culture, real-time PCR, Western blot, microarray, deep sequencing, bioinformatics data analysis, manuscripts preparation and literature search.

Average Time Commitment: 10 or more hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 3

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Project: Nurses Contributions to Fostering Patient Engagement

Professor: Professor Falk (nfalk@gwu.edu)

Description:

School of Nursing

Opportunity abounds in the GWU School of Nursing. We just celebrated our second year as a school and the growth is exponential. We offer opportunities that allow students to learn and grow, working side-by-side with faculty from a variety of backgrounds, life experiences, and areas of expertise.

The Nursing Alliance for Quality Care (http://www.gwumc.edu/healthsci/departments/nursing/naqc/) is a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) funded project based in the School of Nursing. Currently, one of the major areas of focus for the alliance is patient engagement. An excerpt from an August 2012 blog posting by (Ficarra, 2012 – http://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2012/08/define-patient-engagement.html) defines patient engagement as, “a connection between patient, caregiver and health care provider. An empathetic and trusted relationship forms and mutual respect is fostered. Patients and their families are empowered and they are active in health care decisions. However, patient engagement begins before the initial interaction with health care providers. When patients and consumers recognize the need to be in charge of their health, patient engagement evolves. Patients and consumers have a choice to be an active participant in their health care. Those patients and consumers who choose to be actively involved and in charge of their health work together with their health care providers to successfully reach their health goals and needs.”

Dr. Nancy L. Falk, PhD, MBA, RN, co-director of the RWJF project and an assistant professor is developing a proposal seeking funding to support a research project on patient engagement. The ideal student for this project has a demonstrated interest in policy, healthcare, and social sciences (via coursework or prior life experiences), seeks meaningful work at the intersection of health and policy, and demonstrates intellectual curiosity, critical and writing thinking skills, reliability, and follow-through.

Research Assistant Tasks:

The student will assist with library research, writing, and patient engagement proposal development and related projects. They may participate in activities such as poster development, online education activities, and other interesting and diverse opportunities. The expectation is that this will be a learning experience for both student and professor.

Average Time Commitment: 4-6 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

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Project: Integrating Blended Learning Strategies into Bachelor of Nursing Science Education

Professors: Laurie Posey, Jacqueline Wavelet, Whitney Hodges, Gretchen Wiersma, Rebecca Mance, Patricia Davis (posey@gwu.edu)

School of Nursing

Description: The goal of this project is to prepare a white paper discussing the integration of technology into Bachelor of Nursing Science (BSN) education. The paper will present a summary of research related to blended learning in BSN education, and discuss an array of technology-based learning strategies that have been implemented within GWU’s BSN courses over the past 1-2 years through a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration. The paper will describe how each strategy was implemented to meet specific learning objectives, along with a summary of student and faculty feedback related to learning effectiveness and implementation challenges.

Research Assistant Tasks: The Research Assistant will work closely with Laurie Posey, the Principle Investigator of the project, on aspects of paper development, including literature review, data collection, analysis and writing. Specifically, the RA will review and summarize the main ideas and findings of research related to blended learning, compile and analyze the results of student and faculty surveys, conduct interviews with faculty to gather additional information as needed, and draft and edit portions of the paper. The RA will be included as a contributing author on the white paper as well as additional articles that may be published based on this research.

Average Time Commitment: 4-6 Hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

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Project: Impact of Pesticides On Human Sperm

Professor: Melissa J. Perry, ScD, MHS (kallista@gwu.edu)

Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, School of Public Health

Description: This study is evaluating the endocrine disrupting properties of contemporary use pesticides and their impacts on sperm health.  Human sperm from men attending the George Washington University Hospital are being evaluating for general sperm parameters and chromosomal abnormalities, and environmental pesticides exposures are being measured.

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistant will work with the laboratory manager to receive samples from the hospital, to enter questionnaire data into a data base, and to coordinate searches of the research literature.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 2

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Project: Fall Hazards in Construction

Professor: Melissa J. Perry, ScD, MHS (kallista@gwu.edu)

Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, School of Public Health

Description: This research study is evaluating fall hazards among construction workers working on the new School of Public Health and Health Sciences building being constructed on Washington Circle.  The study is evaluating how the skilled trades, including carpenters, painters, welders, electricians and other trades work at heights and what are the best practices to optimize safety and prevent falls.

Research Assistant Tasks: The RA will work with a Master’s level student to make multiple visits to the construction site per week to systematically observe and record construction practices.  The RA will be involved in entering observational data into databases for analysis, and coordinating searches of the literature as needed.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 2

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Project: Responding to Climate Change: Extreme Impacts, Citizen Involvement, and Health

Professor: Sabrina McCormick (sabm@gwu.edu)

Environmental & Occupational Health, SPHHS

Description: Climate change presents the greatest challenge in history. How to decrease its impacts is a pressing question that must be answered immediately in order to avert the most dire consequences. I am working on the development of several research and documentary film projects that center around reducing the impacts of climate change. As a sociologist, I always focus on the social dimensions of these issues. Yet, as a documentary filmmaker and someone interested in social computing and entrepreneurship, I used diverse methods to address these issues. For example, I am finalizing a short documentary film about wildfires in California. I am also developing a new project on how citizens use crowdsourcing to increase sustainability through monitoring and reporting of climate change impacts. Another project explores how heat waves affect local communities in urban America. I am also in the post-production process of a short film on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Research Assistant Tasks: Activities for a student research assistant would be tailored to her/his areas of interest and skill level. Such responsibilities may include the following: generating literature reviews, researching documentary film archives, writing transcriptions of recorded interviews, reaching out to experts and collaborators, helping conduct GIS analyses, and other activities.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Political Science and Public Policy

Project: State Resistance to Federal Policy Mandates

Professor: Christopher J. Deering and Steven Balla (rocket@gwu.edu, sballa@gwu.edu)

Description:

Chris Deering and Steve Balla (Political Science) seek a research assistant who is broadly interested in American politics and public policy for a project that focuses on state resistance to federal policy mandates – such as Obamacare, REALID, Help America Vote Act, and No Child Left Behind. Students with an interest in social policies and especially the relationship between the federal government and the states will be particularly attracted to this project. This project is an extension of previously published work by Palazzolo, et al (2008), Shelley (2008), and Regan and Deering (2010).

Research Assistant Tasks:

• help identify previous research and existing knowledge on state resistance to federal mandates
• collect information about state resistance from sources such as state legislative websites and National Association and State Legislatures
• previously collected data are currently in spread sheet format so as to facilitate statistical analysis of the determinants of state resistance
• student will need to be adept at using various online sources to track down information and at using Excel
• students interested in statistical analysis may have the opportunity to assist in this portion of the project as well

Average Time Commitment: 1-3 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: 1

~~~~~

Project: The Arab Revolt in Palestine 1936-39

Professor: Finkel, Evgeny (efinkel@gwu.edu)

Description: The Arab Revolt of 1936-9, which encompassed a civil war between different Arab groups, an ethnic war between Arab and Jewish forces, an anti-colonial insurgency against the UK, and a massive counterinsurgency campaign led by the British and their Zionist allies, provides a unique opportunity to examine virtually all political violence theory. However, the Arab Revolt has been almost completely overlooked by political scientists researching conflict and violence. Moreover, understanding the Great Arab Revolt is a crucial precursor to studying the Arab-Israeli conflict; the events of 1936-1939 gave birth to many of the conflict’s contemporary features such as the two-state solution, the problem of Palestinian refugees, counterinsurgency tactics, house demolitions, and the use of Arab collaborators by Zionist troops.

Research Assistant Tasks: 

  • Collecting data (academic books, articles, etc.)
  • Preparing summaries of the existing works on the topic
  • Locating events and places using maps of the region
  • Assisting in the preparation of the events dataset
  • Knowledge of Hebrew or Arabic and previous experience with GIS is an advantage

Average Time Commitment: 4-6 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Not sure

~~~~~

Project: Individual Background and Symbolic Gestures: Evidence from Corporate Environmental Officers

Professor: Eun-Hee Kim (eunheek@gwu.edu)

Strategic Management and Public Policy

Description: Prof. Kim seeks assistance with her project that examines how large companies’ corporate environmental management practices relate to the background of their chief environmental officers.

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistant will be responsible for collecting data and conducting content analysis. Preferred candidates should be detail-oriented and hard-working. Familiarity with business databases and prior data collection experience preferred but not required.

Average Time Commitment: 7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

~~~~~

Project: Investment in Renewable Energy in the US Electric Utility Industry

Professor: Eun-Hee Kim (eunheek@gwu.edu)

Strategic Management and Public Policy

Description: Prof. Kim seeks assistance with her project that explores renewable investment strategies of large investor-owned electric utility companies in the United States.

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistant will be responsible for collecting and compiling data from various publicly available sources including media outlets and websites and by directing contacting companies via phone calls or emails. Preferred candidates should be detail-oriented and hard-working. Prior data collection experience preferred but not required.

Average Time Commitment:7-9 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: Varies

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Business

Project: Online Privacy

Professor: Kirsten Martin  (martink@gwu.edu)

Description: As a part of a larger NSF-Funded study to examine privacy online, Dr. Kirsten Martin of the School of Business is looking to hire 1 or 2 research assistants to support multiple web-based surveys.

The research assistants would be paid to work approximately 10 hrs/wk during the academic year for up to 9 months.    The hourly rate is competitive within GWU guidelines for graduate and undergraduate research assistants.

Research Assistant Tasks: The research assistants will assist in all or part of the following for the study:

  • the research and develop the recruitment strategy,
  • develop recruitment material,
  • edit study materials and papers,
  • test pilot survey tool, and
  • assist in the development of the project website.

Average Time Commitment: 10 hours per week

Credit Hours Available: TBD, Paid

One Response to “Research Assistantships (Spring 2013)”

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