Amping up the human factor in hot-button discussions

SMU Magazine Originally Posted: Dec. 6, 2019 Professor Jill DeTemple teaches students how to take topics that drive people apart and reframe the conversation around personal experiences to promote understanding. Through curious questioning and thoughtful listening, students learn they don’t have to agree with their political opposites to understand where they’re coming from. Columnist Sharon Grigsby wrote about the class published for The Dallas Morning News on October 16, 2019. READ MORE EXCERPT: Professor Jill DeTemple, in the religious studies department of SMU’s Dedman College, has developed a discussion tool, dubbed reflective structured dialogue, that she is using in her own classrooms and sharing with professors here and across the nation. The idea is to take topics that drive people apart — gun rights, abortion, [...]

By | 2020-01-07T07:32:04-08:00 January 6th, 2020|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, Religious Studies|Comments Off on Amping up the human factor in hot-button discussions

SMU Study Finds Drug to Prevent Spread of HIV Cousin

D Healthcare Daily Originally Posted: December 9, 2019 Research from SMU may have found a way to prevent the spread of HTLV-1, a cousin of HIV that infects 10-15 million people. The virus causes cells to divide uncontrollably, which can lead to leukemia, neurological disease, and an inflammatory disease of the nervous system whose symptoms include affecting one’s ability to walk, coma, and even death. The drug is called Oleandrin and is derived from the Nerium oleander plant. It targets a stage in the reproduction process of the virus that has yet to be attempted by other treatment. There is no known treatment for the virus, which attacks white blood cells and is spread in a similar manner to HIV, through bodily fluid and breastmilk. “Our [...]

By | 2019-12-17T07:47:24-08:00 December 17th, 2019|Biology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on SMU Study Finds Drug to Prevent Spread of HIV Cousin

Can Being Happy Really Be a Matter of Being Healthy?

Psychology Today Originally Posted: December 7, 2019 When you think about the features of your life that make you happy, you’re likely to count off such factors as how well your relationships are going, whether you have enough money to pay your bills, how you feel about your work, and whether you’re having a good day so far. How often, in this listing of contributors to your happiness, do you include how healthy you’re feeling? From the opposite perspective, if you’ve got a headache, a cold, or a sore toe, you’re probably not feeling all that happy. However, as soon as you’re better, you forget how much your body’s status affected that of your mind’s. What if your happiness was affected more by your overall [...]

By | 2019-12-09T07:52:15-08:00 December 9th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, Psychology|Comments Off on Can Being Happy Really Be a Matter of Being Healthy?

SMU study finds possible new way to treat HTLV-1 virus

Dallas Voice Originally Posted: December 6, 2019 A study led by SMU suggests that oleandrin — a drug derived from the Nerium oleander plant — could prevent the HTLV-1 virus from spreading by targeting a stage of the reproduction process that is not currently targeted by existing drugs. That is significant because there is currently no cure or treatment for the virus, which is related to HIV. About 38 million people have HIV worldwide while about 20 million people have the HTLV-1 virus. “Our research findings suggest that oleandrin could possibly limit the transmission and spread of HTLV-1 by targeting a unique stage in the retroviral life cycle,” said Robert Harrod, associate professor and director of Graduate Studies in SMU’s Department of Biological Sciences. Harrod is a [...]

By | 2019-12-09T07:49:52-08:00 December 9th, 2019|Biology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on SMU study finds possible new way to treat HTLV-1 virus

Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over 40 years

Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: December 1, 2019 Dec. 1, Rick Halperin, director of the SMU Human Rights Program, co-authored by Roger C. Barnes for a piece about Texas being “ground zero” in the U.S. for carrying out capital punishment. Thus far in 2019, there have been 20 executions carried out in the United States. Eight of them have been in Texas. There are four more executions scheduled in the country by year’s end, and one of them is to be carried out in Texas. Since the death penalty in the U.S. was reinstated in 1976, there have been a total of 1,510 executions. A staggering 566 of them have been in Texas. In other words, Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over [...]

By | 2019-12-02T08:03:45-08:00 December 2nd, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Embrey Human Rights Events, Faculty News, History|Comments Off on Texas has been ground zero for capital punishment for over 40 years

Wastewater leak in West Texas revealed

EurekaAlert Originally Posted: November 25, 2019 DALLAS (SMU) - Geophysicists at SMU say that evidence of leak occurring in a West Texas wastewater disposal well between 2007 and 2011 should raise concerns about the current potential for contaminated groundwater and damage to surrounding infrastructure. SMU geophysicist Zhong Lu and the rest of his team believe the leak happened at a wastewater disposal well in the Ken Regan field in northern Reeves County, which could have leaked toxic chemicals into the Rustler Aquifer. The same team of geophysicists at SMU has revealed that sinkholes are expanding and forming in West Texas at a startling rate. Wastewater is a byproduct of oil and gas production. Using a process called horizontal drilling, or "fracking," companies pump vast quantities [...]

By | 2019-11-26T13:48:52-08:00 November 26th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Wastewater leak in West Texas revealed

SMU Saves North Texas’ Archaeological History

D Magazine Originally Posted: Nov. 12, 2019 Remember Sunday Eiselt from our 2017 profile of her? She’s a former Marine, archaeologist, professor, and director of SMU’s Archaeological Research Collections (ARC). She’s also our best chance of saving some of North Texas’ oldest, most important history. Last week I met up with her to tour the ARC facilities, located in Heroy Hall. It’s been a little over two years since our initial interview, and in that amount of time she’s managed an amazing transformation of the three rooms that comprise ARC. What follows is an update, including before-and-after photos. But prior to getting there, give the photo above a look. That’s Eiselt in one of the rooms surrounded by musty brown boxes, each packed to capacity [...]

By | 2019-11-13T07:43:50-08:00 November 13th, 2019|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on SMU Saves North Texas’ Archaeological History

We were lucky to survive the Berlin Wall’s fall

Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: Nov. 9, 2019 Thirty years ago this week the impossible happened: the Berlin Wall fell. More accurately it was crushed by Berliners both East and West who’d had enough of the scar across their cityscape. Like crowds before them, in Leipzig and Dresden in East Germany, in Budapest and Warsaw too, demonstrators demanding change stared down soldiers and police, and won. We were lucky to survive. Crowds can be dangerous. Call that same group a mob and one immediately understands why. They spasm often without coordination or regard for their organizer’s peaceful intent, easily undone by a single protester who breaks rank to toss a brick, or by a trembling young recruit gripped by fear and too tightly gripping his [...]

By | 2019-11-11T09:31:03-08:00 November 11th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, History|Comments Off on We were lucky to survive the Berlin Wall’s fall

Is it possible to change your personality? Yes, if you’re willing to do the work involved

Fox 4 Originally Posted: Nov. 5, 2019 DALLAS (SMU) – Want to be more outgoing?  Or less uptight? In an interview with Fox4ward’s Dan Godwin, SMU psychology professor Nathan Hudson said that it is possible for people to change aspects of their personality.  But it will require some work on your part. You can view the video on Hudson’s website. Forbes and Psychology Today also did a piece on the research. Watch the Video  

By | 2019-11-05T09:22:31-08:00 November 5th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News, Psychology|Comments Off on Is it possible to change your personality? Yes, if you’re willing to do the work involved

Historical data confirms recent increase in West Texas earthquakes

SMU Research Originally Posted: Nov. 4, 2019 A new analysis of historical seismic data conducted by The University of Texas at Austin, SMU and other academies has found that earthquake activity in West Texas around Pecos has increased dramatically since 2009. The study, published Nov. 4, 2019, in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, is important because it leverages old, unmined data to track seismic activity over nearly the past two decades – much further back than other studies— to show that activity has increased during the past decade in an area of the Permian Basin that is being heavily developed for oil and gas. Although researchers have generally thought that to be true, the statewide TexNet earthquake monitoring system has been gathering data [...]

By | 2019-11-05T09:21:00-08:00 November 4th, 2019|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Historical data confirms recent increase in West Texas earthquakes
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