Curious

Robert & Mihaela Vicol, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=18653150

We depend on language a lot, often taking for granted how speech works. 

It only takes one slight hiccup--in either speaking or hearing--for "excuse me while I kiss the sky" to become "excuse me while I kiss this guy." 

This is the research zone in which the University of Oregon's Melissa Baese-Berk works.  She's an associate professor in the Department of Linguistics, studying speech production and perception. 

An example of her work: trying to figure out if Neil Armstrong said "small step for A man." 

Wikimedia

Washington was one of the first states to legalize marijuana for personal use.  And you can bet people in Oregon counties bordering Washington crossed that border to buy pot. 

And then Oregon passed its own personal use law, and the cross-border traffic cooled. 

A study led by University of Oregon health economist Ben Hansen finds that much of the marijuana grown in Washington stays in Washington, counter to concerns that much of it is exported to the black market. 

Wikimedia

"All science is either physics or stamp collecting," said Lord Rutherford, the nuclear physicist. 

A little harsh, perhaps, but Raghu Parthasarathy can probably relate.  Parthasarathy is a physicist at the University of Oregon whose work crosses over into biology, chemistry and neuroscience. 

His work includes researching the microbiome of the gut, which influences a person's overall health. 

U.S. Army/Public Domain

Your child may know all the letters in the alphabet and reads aloud pretty well... but can't seem to tell you what the paragraph is about. 

This is where reading and comprehension come apart.  And it's what Gina Biancarosa studies in her research at the University of Oregon Center on Teaching and Learning

Dr. Biancarosa helps develop systems to assess reading comprehension in elementary school students. 

University of Oregon

The academic year is drawing to a close at the University of Oregon, but the work never stops. 

This month we visit with Leslie Leve from UO's Counseling Psychology and Human Services Department. She updates us on the University's Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact, UO's $1 billion initiative fueled by the Knights' $500 million gift last fall.  Dr. Leve will talk about her own research and how the Knight Campus' approach will help. 

University of Oregon

At least one journalism professor we know reports more people signing up for classes in the Donald Trump/Fake News age. 

And the business of journalism got a shot in the arm from the 2016 campaign and its outcome: more people paying for some major newspapers and their web pages. 

We get a perspective on the news business and renewed interest in it from Ed Madison at the University of Oregon School of Journalism

He worked for CNN when it started up and has worked many places since. 

BLM

The area around Clovis, New Mexico yielded many archaeological treasures over the years. 

That's why the earliest human inhabitants of North America are generally referred to as The Clovis People.  But digs in Southeastern Oregon continue to turn up finds that pre-date Clovis sites. 

The University of Oregon has devoted faculty and students to digs in the region, including at the Rimrock Draw site. 

Yves Picq, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=28335609

About a third of American adults are considered obese, and the percentage among children is growing close to that rate. 

Science is looking at obesity from a number of angles, including at the University of Oregon. 

The Health Promotion and Obesity Prevention Initiative is one focus of the Prevention Science Institute at the U of O. 

cUriOus: University Focuses On Volcanoes

Feb 10, 2017
NASA/Public Domain

Even volcanoes in remote places can cause problems for people. 

Example: the eruption of a volcano in Iceland in 2010; the ash plume shut down airports across Europe. 

Volcanology is one of the study areas addressed by a "Cluster of Excellence" at the University of Oregon. 

Volcanoes in and near Oregon made this a natural program emphasis. 

In this month's installment of "cUriOus: Research Meets Radio," Professor Paul Wallace lays out the cluster of excellence model and how it will help study volcanoes. 

cUriOus: Weather And Ocean Explorers

Jan 6, 2017
Francis Sinclair/Public Domain

You have to admit, it took courage for our ancestors to get in rickety boats and travel across vast expanses of ocean to find lands new to them. 

It took luck, too... and ocean currents and a number of other factors. 

Archaeologist Scott Fitzpatrick at the University of Oregon studies the history of colonization in the Pacific and in the Caribbean.  And his studies take in weather patterns and other forces that may have forced choices on ancient explorers. 

cUriOus: Lights Up On Happier Holidays

Dec 9, 2016
Wikimedia/JPArt

There's a good chance the Halloween decorations and supplies were still on the shelves at your local store when the Christmas music started playing on the speakers. 

The winter holidays can be filled with great joy... and also stress, frustration, and even depression. 

How to avoid the negatives?  Troy Campbell of the University of Oregon has some ideas in this month's installment of "Curious: Research Meets Radio."

Dr. Campbell, with degrees in psychology AND marketing, can provide insights into what wears people out at Christmas... and what they and commercial enterprises can do to provide more joy. 

cUriOus: Students Designing Sports Gear

Nov 14, 2016
University of Oregon

The University of Oregon's football team gained fame in recent years for the variety of its uniforms and accessories (and for winning a bunch of games). 

Another part of the university is involved in designing products athletes use. 

That is the recently opened Sports Product Design Program at the Portland campus of UO. 

This month's installment of "cUriOus: Research Meets Radio" focuses on the PD program and its specialization in sports equipment for athletes with disabilities. 

cUriOus: Things That Go Bump

Oct 9, 2016
University of Oregon

Stephanie Majewski likes it when things bump into each other. 

Which is a huge OVER-simplification of her work in the field of physics at the University of Oregon. 

But it IS true that she learns a lot from atoms crashing into each other, especially at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Switzerland. 

Dr. Majewski's work is the topic of this month's installment of "cUriOus: Research Meets Radio." 

cUriOus: Immigration Law In History

Sep 9, 2016

The constant debates about what's wrong with the American immigration system make you wonder when it was right--if ever.

Political Scientist Dan Tichenor at the University of Oregon can take us back into the history of immigration law.  And he will, when he visits The Exchange with the first installment in what we envision as a continuing series highlighting research at the U of O. 

We call it CURIOUS/Research Meets Radio--with capital U and O.