Monday, July 17, 2006

Three Doctors All in a Row!

It has been terribly long since my last posting. Often, when this happens it is because I don't know what to blog about. Right now, though, I'm BACKED UP with topics I'd like to share with you about really exciting things that are happening in the IU Dept. of Telecommunications.

Let's get caught up by congratulating two more Ph.D. recipients. The picture above was taken at a celebration party on Friday night. The man in the middle is Byungho Park, who I congratulated below. Then, things got busy...with Chen-Chao (the man on the left) and Mija Shin (on the right) defending their dissertations in two successive days!

First came Mija, whose dissertation was entitled "THE ROLE OF MOTIVATION ACTIVATION, POSITIVITY OFFSET AND NEGATIVITY BIAS IN PROCESSING EMOTIONAL MEDIA MESSAGES". Again, I would do it injustice if I tried to explain it in this little space. I would say, however, that it certainly helped to move the theoretical approach to embodied cognitive response to media forward. I encourage those interested to contact Mija directly. She is an Assitant Professor at the Murrow School of Communications at Washington State University. Growing up in Washington State myself (about 2 hours from WSU in a town called Richland) I have a special connection to the Murrow School and am at times envious of Mija...a quick look around Bloomington and the IU campus usually solves that, though! :)

The next day, Chen-Chao defended his dissertation entitled: "COGNITIVE PROCESSING DURING WEB SEARCH: THE ROLE OF WORKING MEMORY LOAD IN SELECTIVE ATTENTION AND INHIBITORY CONTROL". As a reader (and committee member) I liked Chen-Chao's dissertation for several reasons. First, it was very applicable to industry questions. Search engines like Google are searching for ways to make paide search more effective for their customers, and Chen-Chao approaches this question with a focused experiment. Secondly, the theoretical basis for his work was a working-memory theory of attention...which is a different approach than the limited-capacity theory under which I conduct my work. It was very interesting to read a series of well-constructed hypotheses based upon a different point of view. Again, I'll let you contact Chen-Chao directly to find out more about his study and the results. Chen-Chao also has an Assistant Professor position at National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan.

Congratulations to both of them...and again to Byungho who is seen below offering advice to Johnny Sparks, the next doctoral candidate in line to defend--sometime in mid-August.

No comments: