2016 Fulton Mentored Learning Conference: a Whole Degree Above

A record number of students participated in this year’s annual Mary Lou Fulton Mentored Learning Conference. Six-hundred and sixty-six students, including both graduate and undergraduate students, participated with 299 posters.Their efforts were led by 75 FHSS faculty members.

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What is Mentored Learning?

Mentored learning is significant hands-on research that engages BYU faculty or qualified adjunct faculty with students. It may be one-on-one or in small groups. The Mentored Learning Conference provides an avenue for undergraduate and graduate students from all departments in the The College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences to showcase their mentored research in the form of a concise poster. The conference is a full day event sponsored by the Mary Lou Fulton Chair.

A Life Changer for Price

For Dr. Joe Price, a professor of Economics who spoke to the conference participants

Price, Joseph
Dr. Joe Price by Cheryl Fowers/BYU Copyright All Rights Reserved

during a special luncheon in their honor, mentored learning proved to be his most impactful experience at BYU. He said it changed his life as an undergrad student. He became a mentor when he joined the faculty, and that has allowed him to return the favor. Since 2007, he has employed over 300 students as research assistants. He shared some words of advice for students doing mentored research:

  • Recognize that your mentors love and care about you.
  • Find a way to see the big picture in what you’re doing.
  • Try to become part of the idea-generating process.
  • Find your passion.

President Worthen also offered his congratulations to conference participants. He recognized that a lot of time and effort goes into these projects – probably more than the student initially anticipates. He encouraged them to take time to express gratitude to everyone who helped make their work possible. He acknowledged the meaning in the work they are doing. “What goes on here is important to God. You are not here by accident,” he said.

Faculty representatives from the college selected first place winners from each department. Some departments also awarded second, third place winners, as well as honorable mentions. Evaluation of the posters was based on quality of research, overall poster clarity and visual appeal.

If You’re not Doing Research, You’re Only Getting Half a Degree”

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Photo by Aaron Cornia © BYU PHOTO 2015 All Rights Reserved

“If you’re not doing research, you’re only getting 50% of a degree,” said Clarissa Gregory, a senior Political Science major, who won 3rd place in her department. Her poster was titled, The Senator Who Cried Filibuster: Using Game Theory to Explain the Dynamics of Filibuster Threats. Gregory is extremely grateful for the University’s emphasis on undergraduate research. She could not say enough good about her mentor, Dr. Magleby, who has assisted in her research, and helped her make plans for post graduation.

First time participant Laura Hovey says she plans on doing the conference again next year.  Her Winter 2016 sociology class required participation in the conference, but she said that her experience with the conference was better than she ever expected. The students picked a research question at the beginning of the semester and their professor, Carter Rees, was there to help them along the research process. Hovey chose to study how parents pass down religious commitment to their children. “I am grateful that we were pushed to do this conference somewhat early [in our education],” Hovey said.

Congratulations to all who participated, and especially to our winners!

Dept. Place Student Mentor(s) Title of Poster
Anthropology 1st Taralea Forster John Clark Loose Threads:  Reconstructing the Cultural Contexts of Five Looted Pre-Columbian Peruvian Textiles
2nd Garret Nash Greg Thompson Two Sides to Every Story:  Using Ethnography to Study Conflict Among Refugees
Economics 1st Nicholas Hales, Ryan Allen, John Cannon Arden Pope A Quasi-experimental Analysis of Elementary School Absences and Air Pollution
Geography 1st Alan Barth Matt Bekker Landscape Ecology of Fire Recovery
History 1st David Ellison, Jeffrey Nokes Historical Films:  An Essential Resource for Nurturing Historical Literacy
2nd Jeffrey Jensen, Josh Smith, Daniel Merrill Aaron Skabelund Shiba Kokan
Neuroscience 1st Marcel Hall Sterling Sudweeks PAMs:  A growing Field in Pharmacological Drug Development
2nd Athena Howell, Daniel Bjornn Brock Kirwan Long term Memory Consolidation and Pattern Separation
2nd Amanda Ellegn, Nathan Muncy, Seth Spencer Brock Kirwan Effects of Testing Encoding on Pattern Separation
Political Science 1st James Martherus Chris Karpowitz Taking the Pulse:  What Can We Learn About Primary Candidates From Social Media
2nd Jenah House Chris Karpowitz The Divorce Experiment: Do Children Matter?
3rd Clarissa Gregory Jay Goodliffe The Senator Who Cried Filibuster: Using Game Theory to Explain the Dynamics of Filibuster Threats
Psychology 1st AnnaLisaWard, Max Maisel, Kevin Stephenson, Mikle South Anxiety in Autism and Autism in Anxiety:  Symptom Overlap on Adult Self-Report Measures
2nd Alex Nielson, Kaitlynn Wright, Jordan Sgro, Adiane Cavallini Wendy Birmingham I feel fat:  Spousal Support and Body Image
3rd Amanda Koci Patrick Steffan Alexithymia, Empathy, Avoidance, and Physiological Reactivity to Stress
Hon. Ment. William Hagee, Tiffany Migdat, Adam You, Sam Baker, Chelsea Romney Julianne Holt Lundstad Where is the Love?  Intransal Oxytocin is Associated with Increases in Hostility
School of Family Life 1st Savanah Keenan, Logan Dicus, Ty Gregson, Karli Engebretsen Sarah Coyne Daddy or Dumbies
2nd Nathan Leonhardt Brian Willoughby Pornography and sexual media: Differentiation between pornography and sexual media and their association with multiple aspects of sexual satisfaction
3rd Ashley Lebaron, Christina Rosa, Carly Schmutz, Travis Spencer, Josh Powell, Nick Jones Jeff Hill Effective Parental Practices for Teaching Children Sound Financial Principles: Retrospective Perceptions of Millennials and Their Parents and Grandparents
Hon.Ment. Leanna Stevenson,Courtney Stevenson, Lyndsey Gunnerson,Haley  Furstenau, McKayla Chambers, Melanie Anthony Sarah Coyne Teens and Screens: A Content Analysis of Media Use of Teens in Popular TV Shows
Sociology 1st Margo Taylor Renata Forste Family Planning and Women’s Empowerment in Nepal
2nd Lindsey Elmont Carol Ward Native American Vietnam-era Veterans:  Access to Healthcare in Rural Montana
3rd Vanessa Wilson Carter Rees How Deos Race Affect Perceived Risk of Contracting a Sexually Transmitted Disease?
Hon Ment Florencia Silveria Kristie Phillips Educational Inequality in the US and International Achievement Outcomes:  Are the Poor Really to Blame for the US Underperformance?
Dept Place Student (s) Mentor(s) Title of Poster
Anthro 1st Daniel King Michael Searcy Plant Microfossils Recovered from Dental Calculus at Casas Grandes, Mexico
Neuro 1st Doris Jackson, Marcel Hall, Brady Vance, Romaine Drecketts, Jeff Kolb, Bradley Kleinstuber, David Pugh, Bud Todd Ramona Hopkins Novel Pharmacological Target:  Characterization of alpha-3 beta-2 nAChRs expressed in Xenophus Laevis Oocytes
Psych 1st Brooke Dresden, Erika Lee, Kristen Grant, Jordann Parks, Alexander Dresden Robert Ridge Men exhibit more bias toward profeessional women and women experience more gender harassment in male  dominated university majors
SFL 1st Sarah Eliason Erin Holmes How relationship self-regulation influences relational aggression in different attachment groups
Social Work 1st Emily Steele David Wood Warrior Camp: An Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy Program for Combat Trauma in Military Veterans
2nd Rachel Thornton Gordon Limb Does growing up in stepfamily negatively impact views on relationships & marriage?
Social Work 3rd Kobie Chapman Renata Forste Support for Paid Maternity Leave: What Matters?
Hon Ment Shalisha Jessup DavidWood Military Self Mastery and Self-Esteem among military service members: an analysis of symptoms across time.
Sociology 1st Michelle Lucier Curtis Child More than constraints:  How low socio-economic parents go about making decisions concerning their children’s schooling
Dept Place Student (s) Mentor(s) Title of Poster
Economics 1st Nicholas Hales, Ryan Allen, John Cannon Arden Pope A Quasi-experimental Analysis of Elementary School Absences and Air Pollution
Geography 2nd Shawn Wortham, Dallan Wortham Matt Bekker Understanding Utah’s Water Resources:  The Bristlecone Pine
Anthropology 3rd Spencer Lambert, Joseph Bryce, Amanda Crandall James Allison Hearth and Home:  Faunal Use at Two Sites in Utah Valley




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