Again this year, CRDM students made a strong showing at the 7th annual NCSU Graduate Research Symposium. Giving poster presentations this year were:
Jeff Swift, “Digital Demagoguery and the Virtue of Bias.” Jeff’s project examined demagoguery on online political websites.
Valeska Redmond, “The Influence of Power in Upward Employee Dissent.” Valeska’s research looked at how employees dissent in the workplace and developing a model for studying it.
Elizabeth Johnson-Young, “Media Use, Body (Dis)Satisfaction and Behavioral Intentions: Toward a Model of Media Effects and Health during Pregnancy.” Elizabeth examined the relationships between media use, (dis)satisfaction of their bodies, and health behaviors of pregnant women.
Ashley R. Kelly and Meagan Kittle Autry, “Temporal Trends in Digitally-Mediated Environmental Debate: An Analysis Across Media to Assess Social Media Use in Local Environmental Debate.” Ashley and Meagan’s research examined public response on Twitter.com to the proposed Duke Energy and Progress Energy merger. Their poster was awarded third place honors in the Humanities and Design division.
Meagan (l) and Ashley (r) with their winning poster. Photo courtesy of NCSU.
We’re proud to count several CRDMers amongst the nominees for the 2011 Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Awards. According to the North Carolina State University Graduate Student Association (or NCSUGSA for a mind-boggling initialism),
The Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Awards serves as the primary university-level forum for recognizing exceptional contributions made by Graduate Teaching Assistants to the educational excellence of the University. This annual event is a celebration of excellence in graduate student teaching in the laboratory and classroom. The UGSA Teaching Effectiveness Committee invites the Directors of Graduate Programs (DGPs) to nominate a small number of TAs that exemplify outstanding teaching and mentoring and go beyond what is required of them. All departments are encouraged to participate so that their students receive the recognition they deserve.
This year’s nominees for Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Awards featured five CRDM students:
- Kevin Brock (English)
- Kati Fargo (English)
- David Gruber (English)
- Jason Kalin (English)
- Dan Sutko (Communication)
Of those five, the big winner of the day was…
Kevin, looking resplendent in his beard, humbly shows off his award certificate.
Kevin Brock! Congrats, Kevin, on your well-deserved recognition.
Check out Kevin’s digital portfolio or follow him on Twitter.
(that’s a lot of letters)
Last semester Freddi Hamilton (’06 cohort) won the Academic Achievement Award, a university-wide award given by the Association for the Concerns of African-American Graduate Students (ACAAGS). She was recognized for her achievements in four arenas: her outstanding academic record, her excellence as a teacher, her important and innovative research, and her strong ethic of social justice and community service.
Freddi accepts her award with (l-r) Drs. Melissa Johnson, Vicki Gallagher, and Steve Wiley
The following excerpt from her nomination letter gives us a better sense of Freddi’s research and work ethic:
Ms. Hamilton’s dissertation research connects her professional experience in telecommunications and new media technologies with her commitment to literacy and her concern for the empowerment of low-income older adults. Her work examines the ways in which adults from low-income households obtain access to, and learn to use, advanced communication and information technologies. In an era of apparently ubiquitous technology, this important and timely research addresses one of the significant remaining aspects of the digital divide. Ms. Hamilton’s findings will help policy makers, educators, and community leaders develop more effective programs for empowering low-income older adults to participate in the network society and the information revolution.
Congrats to Freddi on her well-deserved recognition, and we apologize for the belated post.
We’ve mentioned his dissertation in an earlier post, and now it seems it’s worth mentioning again: Christian Casper has won the 2009-2010 CHASS Dissertation Award. A committee of graduate program directors evaluates all entries from CHASS (the College of Humanities and Social Sciences) doctoral programs, and ultimately chooses one dissertation project each year to honor for its excellence.
We’re happy to congratulate Christian for bringing the CHASS Dissertation Award home to CRDM this year, and we look forward to seeing who’s going to keep it for next time (we’re looking at you, CRDM class of 2010…).
(See what I did there?)
Jordan Frith, a second year in the CRDM program, earned the “Top Paper” award in the Communication and Technology Interest Group at the Eastern Communication Association conference in Baltimore (April 22-25).
Titled “Where are You Now? Location Aware Technologies and the Organizing Logics of Space,” Jordan’s paper addresses the issue of mobile media on location-aware mobile phones in public spaces. Need a little more explanation? Cue the abstract:
People have used mobile media to shape their interactions with public space for at least two hundred years. Mobile media often do more than just help people shape perception of public space, they often bring previously private activities into public spaces. This paper examines mobile media use in public spaces, particularly how their use often disrupts our socially constructed conceptions of the private and public. The newest form of mobile media, location aware mobile phones, represent an evolution in mobile media use in public spaces. This paper argues, however, that location aware technologies require a new theory for understanding mobile technology use in public spaces. Because location aware technologies interact with the surrounding space rather than introduce an exterior code to the space, they provide users with new affordances but also present new concerns that must be addressed.
Cool project, no?
Congrats to Jordan on his efforts to make the his fellow ECA’ers more aware of our location within the field.
Two second-year CRDM students, David Gruber and Jason Kalin, won recognition at NC State’s university-wide Graduate Student Research Symposium on Friday, March 11th. David won first place in the Social Sciences and Management category and Jason won second place in the Humanities and Design category. Their titles and abstracts follow below. Congrats to the both of you for doing our program proud across multiple disciplinary categories!
Advisor: Dr. Jason Swarts
Title: Decoding the Language of Brain Decoding
Abstract: Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has enabled neuroscience researchers to visualize patterns in the brain that can help them predict, with surprising accuracy, what a person is thinking (Hansen, et al., 2006; Haynes, et al., 2007). This fMRI research, known popularly as “brain-prediction” or “mind-reading,” initiated a flurry of news articles between February of 2007 and March of 2008. Often embedded with pictures from the science fiction film “Minority Report” and framed by fear-laced titles such as “German Scientists Reading Minds Using Brain-Scan Machines” (Fox News, 2007), these news articles demonstrated that not all fMRI advancements would receive the same amount or the same type of coverage in the media. Thus, this project examines how brain-prediction, as a particularly controversial fMRI research agenda, has been presented to the general public. Using verbal data analysis in conjunction with a critical rhetorical analysis, this project locates recurring grammatical features from a collection of popular news articles and then explores the rhetorical implications of those features in this context. Ultimately, this project concludes that the articles under examination display a pattern of distancing researchers from the negative future implications of the research and, through an over-reliance on non-human actors, promote a narrative of technological determinism.
Advisor: Dr. Jason Swarts
Title: Genetic Information and the Constitution of Medical Subjects: Critical Junctures in Genome Sequencing
Abstract: Increasingly sophisticated and economically feasible genome sequencing will likely help usher in an era of personal genetic medicine. Stephanie S. Turner (2005) argues that certain discourses surrounding genetic medicine exemplify what she terms critical junctures, which are “technological and cultural shifts that transform the idea of information” (p. 332). Turner identifies two critical junctures in genetic medicine, wherein the individual medical subject is neglected in favor of genetic information. However, given the advancement of genome sequencing, this study argues for a third critical juncture, wherein medical subjects are being reconstituted through genetic information as embodiments of their genes, and more importantly, as potentially in control of their genes. What becomes important is what individuals can do with their own genetic information. This study analyzes how the third critical juncture is being communicated in popular news sources to better understand how genome sequencing may be received by the public. Using discourse analytic techniques and rhetorical analysis, this study explores the technological, medical, and social consequences of genome sequencing, including its potential to constitute medical subjects thereby changing what it means to have a healthy body and to lead a healthy life. Indeed, the discourse of the news articles suggests that genome sequencing can be deeply unsettling because genetic information seems out of the individual’s control—which contradicts the claims made by genome-sequencing companies. Consequently, genome sequencing, because its results are still inconclusive, should be approached cautiously.
NC State brought a significant contingent to Chicago for the annual National Communication Association conference, and of the 36 presenters from NCSU, 14 were students in the CRDM program:
- Christopher Cummings, “The Public and Scary Science: Biotechnology to Synthetic Biology”
- Jacob A. Dickerson, “A Framework for the Rhetorical Examination of Digital Technologies Over Time”
- Jordan Frith, “Locative media and urban spaces: New discourses on politics, community construction, journalism, and individualization”
- Amy L. Housley Gaffney, “Class participation and syllabus expectations: An examination of disciplinary expectations with implications for communication”
- “Keeping your Communication Across the Curriculum Program Afloat: Funding, Assessment, and Innovation during Economic Instability”
- “The Dissertation as Product of Stability and Change: Experiences of Graduate Education, Mentoring and Being Mentored”
- Jason Kalin, “Synthetic or Sin-thetic Biology? Rhetoric, Religion, and Emerging Technologies” — (Nominated for Top Student Paper in The Rhetoric of Science)
- Kelly Martin, “Monumental Argument: Arguments about Monuments and Public Art and Counter-monuments and Public Art as Argument”
- Visual Discourse and Pedagogy – How Visual Communication Teaches and is Taught”
- “Novel Forms of Visual Communication”
- Kathy Oswald, “Communication in Transition: Rethinking Raymond Williams’ ‘Mobile Privatization’”
- Shayne Pepper, “HBO and the AIDS Epidemic: Subscribing to a Neoliberal Solution”
- “Invisible Children and the Cyberactivist Spectator”
- Christin Phelps, “Advancing Online Community: The Internet, Artificial Intelligence, and Religion”
- Zach Rash, “One Conflict, Two Stories: Practitioners’ and Scientists’ Incommensurable Narratives about APA’s History”
- Dawn Shepherd, “Professional Matchmaking and the Problem of Being Single”
- Daniel M. Sutko, “My mobile maneuver: Technology, the rhetorical maneuver, and kairotic subjectification” — (Winner, Top Student Papers in The Rhetoric of Science)
- “Decibels of Control: Colors of Control, Disciplinarity, Control and Disaster Management
- “Locative Media and the Democratization, Disconnection, and Destabilization of Urban Communities”
- Anna Turnage, “Public Art, Symbolism and Social Hierarchical Order”
Additionally, two second-year students, Jason Kalin and Dan Sutko, received nominations for “Best Student Paper” in the Rhetoric of Science division. Dan won the award for his paper, “My mobile maneuver: Technology, the rhetorical maneuver, and kairotic subjectification.”
Congrats to all students for making NCA another big success this year.