UW-Stout News Story

Students, faculty present research at conference in Italy

October 28, 2013

Five UW-Stout students and three faculty members presented research internationally after their work was accepted for the 53rd annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research in Florence, Italy.

The recent conference drew experts from around the world in cognitive science, cognitive neuroscience, neuroscience and psychology.

"The conference is dominated by top research institutions in the U.S. and Europe," said Desiree Budd, professor of psychology.

"Only a very small number of undergraduates present research at this conference. The majority of researchers who present are from large Ph.D.-granting institutions," she added.

Students on the trip were: Mary Brodhagen, of Abbotsford; Daniel Comstock, of Eau Claire; Steffanie Fisher, of Lake Villa, Ill.; Katherine Hardy, of Minneapolis; and Sophie Sigel, of Minneapolis.

From left, Daniel Comstock, Mary Brodhagen and Steffanie Fisher in Italy.Brodhagen, Comstock and Fisher are cognitive science majors. Sigel is an applied science major and Hardy a psychology major.

Along with Budd, the students were joined by Jo Hopp, associate professor of physics; and Sarah Wood, associate professor of psychology.

"Co-presenting the research allows faculty to mentor students on dissemination and presentation aspects of the research process," said Budd, who noted that conference officials were impressed with UW-Stout students' work and are considering a symposium to highlight undergraduate research.

Six other UW-Stout students worked on the projects but couldn't attend the conference.

Grants from Research Services on campus and the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences helped pay for the trip. The College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics also supported the trip.

UW-Stout presentations were:

- "Problems and Solutions Associated with Creating a Laboratory Infrastructure at a Small Primarily Undergraduate Institution," by Budd, Wood and Michael Donnelly of Sulcus Scientific Consulting.″

- "Don't Tell Anyone: The Influence of Anticipatory Cues on Responses to Revelations of Mundane and Exciting Secrets," by Jesse Bruce, of Andover, Minn.; Donnelly; Wood; and Jessica Swanner, on staff at Iowa State University.

- "To Play or Not to Play: Long-term Neurological Changes Associated with Sports-related, Non-concussive, Repetitive Head Impacts Received During Adolescence," by Budd; Brodhagen; Comstock; Donnelly; Fisher; Katelyn Hartung, of Durand; Hopp; and Matthew McNutt, of Menomonie.

- "Perceived Fat Content of Food, Neural Activity and Food Choices," by Sarah Bjork, of Elmwood; Brodhagen; Budd; Brettina Davis, of Minneapolis; Donnelly; Hardy; Tina Lee, of Menomonie; and Sigel.

"The conference allows us to disseminate our findings to international experts and receive critical feedback as to the continued collection, analysis and interpretation of our data," said Budd, who added that speakers, vendors and other educational aspects of the conference also were valuable.

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