Doctoral Research Showcase

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Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
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    Developing relations between spatial knowledge and spatial language in human children
    (2012-04-17) Scott, Nicole M.; Sera, Maria D.; Georgopoulos, Apostolos P.
    One of the hallmarks of human intelligence is the ability to quickly extract and encode spatial relations. Yet little is known about how this ability evolved, about its relation to human language, and about the neural mechanisms that support it. We have begun to examine the development of spatial cognition using a developmental approach to shed light on these issues. We have two alternative hypotheses: 1) the same underlying mechanisms operate in processing two sets of spatial relations – above/below (A/B) and left/right (L/R), or (2) different mechanisms are involved and are reflected by the order in which terms for these relations are learned by human children. We tested these hypotheses by examining the performance of children between 5 and 11 years old on a verbal and nonverbal task of spatial reasoning. We will follow up this study with an investigation of the neural processing of these relations in adults.
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    Efficiently Monitoring and Optimizing the Power Grid
    (2012) Zhu, Hao
    The smart grid vision is to revitalize the electric power grid by capitalizing on advanced sensing, machine learning, optimization, communication, and control technologies to address the pressing issues related to security, stability, environmental impact, market diversity, and renewable energy sources. This work aims to effectively realize this vision through integrating cyber-intelligence to the aging infrastructure. It proposes to markedly improve power system monitorability even in the face of adversarial effects such as noisy and compromised measurements, as well as equip the power system operators with tools to quickly diagnose and effectively respond to faults, instabilities, and attacks in the grid.
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    Structure determination of zeolite nanosheets
    (2012) Zhang, Xueyi; Tsapatsis, Michael
    MFI and MWW zeolite nanosheets are building units for state-of-the-art zeolite thin films for gas separation. In this study, the structures of exfoliated MFI and MWW zeolite nanosheets were determined using a combination of experimental and simulation methods. Based on characterization results from atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy, the structures and thicknesses of the exfoliated zeolite nanosheets were proposed. After optimization with Car-Parrinello molecular dynamics, X-ray diffraction patterns and electron diffraction patterns are simulated from these structures. The agreement between experimental and simulated characterization data suggested that the proposed structures should represent the actual structures of the exfoliated zeolite nanosheets. The methods used in this study can be extended to determining structures of other zeolite nanostructures.
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    Impacts of online financial literacy training on battered women
    (2012) Nguyen, Hoa T.
    Economic security is critical to enable battered women to escape and not return to an abusive relationship. Financial literacy training has gained greater attention in the United States recently, especially since the economic crisis. This study attempts to measure the impacts of an online financial literacy training on battered women’s (1) financial literacy; (2) financial self-efficacy; and (3) self-esteem, using a quasi-experimental design. Standardized measurement for financial literacy and financial self-efficacy will be developed as a part of this study. Feedback from participants on how best to deliver the training and their financial needs will also be collected.