The Ohio State University to Participate in University Innovation Alliance Study

Ohio State will be one member of an 11-institution team gathering data to evaluate the effectiveness of advising. The University Innovation Alliance wants to determine if current advising techniques and programs are effective in retaining, progressing and graduating low-income and first-generation students.

The UIA is a year-old consortium of public research universities dedicated to to helping more students from all backgrounds graduate from college. This project will study some ten-thousand students. Using a variety of research methods to study whether or not systematic, proactive advising helps retain students at risk of not graduating.

The eleven universities will study advising methods such as: helping students develop individualized academic maps to plan out their college career, real-time alerts to track when they may be struggling and timely, targeted ad visor interventions to get students back on track.

Jody Victor

Invasive Species: Nature’s Junk Food?

Lauren Pintor, assistant professor of aquatic ecology at the Ohio State University, co-authored a study that appeared in Ecology Letters in which she and her colleague studied the effect of invasive species on the diet of native predators.

What they found suggests that invasive species might be nature’s junk food for local predators. The study suggests that native predators do best when reserving their consumption of foreign species as an occasional snack. Reasons can range from nutrition to the ability to eat or digest unfamiliar creatures. Most often foreign species help predators only when they become a supplemental food source.

However, there are cases in which an invasive species have become successful primary food sources and in some cases have even saved an endangered species. Familiar to many Ohioans, the European round goby that has been wreaking havoc in the depths of Lake Erie has probably saved a local endangered species, the Lake Erie watersnake. The clever watersnake adapted to eating the round goby and is no longer considered endangered.

Ohio State University Research Center Turns 50

The Ohio State University’s Center for Human Resource Research — known as the CHRR for those of us into brevity — will celebrate its fiftieth year as a pioneering research center in the development of survey methodology and as global leader in social science research. The CHRR has experience all over the world designing and managing research and policy studies.

The Center for Human Resource Research was founded in 1965 and is a multidisciplinary research center which is affiliated with the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Ohio State University. The CHRR researches a variety of contemporary problems related to developing and conserving human resources.

CHRR is responsible for designing survey instruments, overseeing field work, and generating and disseminating fully documented data sets to researchers in government, private research organizations, and universities around the world. These interests range from the production of substantive analyses of economic, social, and psychological aspects of individual labor market behavior to examining the impact of government programs and policies.

In addition to conducting a diverse number of surveys, CHRR staff members continue to contribute innovative applications of ideas and technology to the field of survey methodology.

Collaboration to Bring Health Care to Malawi, Africa

The people of Malawi live with chronic uncertainty: their money’s value may drop dramatically overnight; loved ones dying of treatable disease; if they are going to get enough food.

In light of this seemingly impossible situation, Alison Norris, assistant professor of epidemiology in the Ohio State University’s College of Public Health, along with a team of other faculty and students from Ohio State have joined forces with Malawi aid group Child Legacy International.

There mission is to study what exactly keeps people in poor health and develop interventions to improve and save their lives.

Working together in a local clinic Norris and her team have already conducted a study of 1,500 residents in the community which tries to understand how they make health care decisions, especially in the light of such pervasive uncertainty.

The Ohio State team is testing ways to connect more people to available health care.

Jody Victor