Olivia DrakeMay 26, 20211min
During the 189th Commencement ceremony, four Wesleyan University faculty received the honorary degree of Master of Arts ad eundem gradum. The degree is awarded regularly and solely to those members of the faculty who (1) are not graduates of Wesleyan at the bachelor’s level and (2) have attained or been appointed to the rank of full professor on our faculty. By the award of this degree, all full professors on the Wesleyan faculty are made alumni of the University, and are qualified to participate in alumni affairs. The recipients include: Erika Franklin Fowler, professor of government; Barbara Juhasz, professor of…

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Olivia DrakeApril 1, 20212min
As a recipient of a Fulbright Specialist Award, Professor Lisa Dierker hopes to connect with academic partners across the world sharing her expertise and excitement in support of data analytics. “High quality, accessible and manageable data have never been so critical to the well-being of people around the world,” Dierker said. “Increasing capacity to identify, gather and analyze relevant data is a key pathway for better-informed decision-making and will create a larger, more diverse workforce.” Dierker, Walter Crowell University Professor of Social Sciences, professor of psychology and education studies, is a co-creator of Wesleyan's "Passion-Driven Statistics" model, a data-driven, project-based…

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Olivia DrakeMarch 15, 20212min
During the 2021 Shasha Seminar for Human Concerns, held March 11–13, participants explored the topic of "Truth (and Lies) in Our Time." The Shasha Seminar is an annual educational forum for Wesleyan alumni, parents, and friends that provides an opportunity to explore issues of global concern in a small seminar environment. Endowed by James Shasha '50, P'82, the Shasha Seminar supports lifelong learning and encourages participants to expand their knowledge and perspectives on significant issues. David McCraw, vice president and deputy general counsel for The New York Times, presented the Shasha Seminar's keynote address titled "Lies and Liberty: The Future…

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Olivia DrakeMarch 3, 20214min
Do political views and anxiety play a functional role in combating COVID-19? According to a recent study by Ori Cantwell '22, the answer is yes. Cantwell, a psychology major, presented his recent study "Yes We (Anxiously) Can: Liberal Ideology and Anxiety Predict Social Distancing during the COVID-19 Pandemic" during the virtual 22nd Annual Convention of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Conference, held Feb. 9–13. "We found that in a sample of over 10,000 American adults, anxiety partially mediated the relationship between liberal ideology and social distancing," Cantwell explained. "Liberals were more anxious than conservatives, and people were most…

Olivia DrakeNovember 15, 20202min
Hilary Barth, professor of psychology; Andrea Patalano, professor of psychology; Liana Mathias '17; and former lab coordinators Alexandra Zax and Katherine Williams are the co-authors of an article titled "Intuitive symbolic magnitude judgments and decision making under risk in adults," published in Cognitive Psychology, 118, in May 2020. Barth; Williams; postdoctoral fellow Chenmu Xing; Jamie Hom '17, MA '18, Meghana Kandlur '18, Praise Owoyemi '18, Joanna Paul '18, Elizabeth Shackney '17, and Ray Alexander '18 are the co-authors of "Partition dependence in financial aid distribution to income categories," published in PLoS ONE 15, in April 2020. Barth; Patalano; Williams; Zax;…

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Olivia DrakeNovember 9, 20205min
This fall, the introductory-level course PSYC 105: Foundations of Contemporary Psychology is being taught entirely online to 200 students due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After six weeks of remote lectures and interactive breakout sections via Zoom, Professors Steve Stemler and Sarah Carney who are team-teaching the course, hoped to break the "Zoom fatigue" routine and get their students physically interacting. So working together with the eight course TAs, they created a campus-wide psychological scavenger hunt. With the first wave of students participating on Oct 27, and other waves participating subsequently, more than 110 students participated in the activity in person,…

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Olivia DrakeJuly 30, 20202min
Before children enter Kindergarten, they're often interested in mathematical concepts like patterns, numbers, and logic. However, math remains under-supported in most preschool settings in the United States. As a recipient of a $1.8 million grant by the National Science Foundation, Associate Professor of Psychology Anna Shusterman hopes to address this educational need by providing preschool settings with a research-based, developmentally appropriate, conceptually rich, flexible, and fun collection of math games that can be incorporated into any classroom. "The preschool years have long been recognized as an opportune time to engage children in mathematical thinking, bootstrapping their natural curiosity and laying a…

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Olivia DrakeJune 17, 20209min
Several faculty have recently authored or co-authored books, book chapters, and articles that appear in prestigious academic journals. BOOKS AND BOOK CHAPTERS Joslyn Barnhart, assistant professor of government, is the author of The Consequences of Humiliation: Anger and Status in World Politics (Cornell University Press, 2020). Susanne Fusso, Marcus L. Taft Professor of Modern Languages, is the translator of The Nose and Other Stories by Nikolai Gogol (Columbia University Press, 2020). Ruth Johnson, associate professor of biology, is the author of a book chapter titled "Adhesion and the Cytoskeleton in the Drosophila Pupal Eye," published in the book Molecular Genetics…

Olivia DrakeMay 31, 202010min
Wesleyan's Board of Trustees recently announced the promotions of nine faculty members, effective July 1, 2020. Five faculty were conferred tenure with promotion. They join six other faculty members who were awarded tenure earlier this spring. Joslyn Barnhart Trager, associate professor of government Anthony Keats, associate professor of economics Andrew Quintman, associate professor of religion Michael Slowik '03, associate professor of film studies Takeshi Watanabe, associate professor of East Asian studies In addition, four faculty members are being promoted. They join one other faculty member who was promoted earlier this spring. Erika Franklin Fowler, professor of government Barbara Juhasz, professor…

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Olivia DrakeMay 26, 20201min
This month, four Wesleyan faculty received the honorary degree of Master of Arts ad eundem gradum. This degree has been awarded by Wesleyan since 1894 to those members of the faculty who are not graduates of Wesleyan at the bachelor’s level and who have attained the rank of full professor. The award makes each full professor an alumnus/a of the University. Recipients include Hilary Barth, professor of psychology; Robert Conn, professor of Spanish; Sanford Shieh, professor of philosophy, and Nicole Stanton, professor of dance.

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Lauren RubensteinApril 27, 20202min
Wesleyan in the News 1. Washington Post: "Biden Makes End Run Around Trump as the President Dominates the National Stage" Erika Franklin Fowler, associate professor of government and co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project, comments on Biden's unusual strategy during an unprecedented time for the 2020 presidential campaign. “There is not a ready off-the-shelf playbook for how you campaign in this environment if you are a nonincumbent, so that’s part of what you’re seeing,” she said. “We’re all being thrown into this new environment, where campaigns are going to need to reinvent, to some extent, how they go about things,…