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Texas State University

Featured Researchers

We’re proud of our advancing research at Texas State. The following cross-section of projects represents just some of the exciting research happening every day in every department of the university.

Dr. Christine Norton, associate professor, College of Applied Arts

“Adventure  therapy is the prescriptive use of outdoor adventure activities by  licensed mental health professionals that kinesthetically engage clients  affectively, cognitively and behaviorally on their path to mental  health and wellbeing.”

Focus

Adventure therapy

Dr. Araceli Martinez Ortiz, executive director of the LBJ Institute for STEM Education and Research; research associate professor, College of Education

“Women  entering the field are historically underrepresented, as are many other  minority populations. There are psychological and social barriers that  make it difficult for women to remain in STEM fields. They often feel  that they don’t belong because they don’t have the support they need. My  job is to discover and implement interventions that mitigate these  barriers.”

Focus

Systemic barriers and supports in STEM education and careers

Dr. Ty Schepis, associate professor, College of Liberal Arts

“A  lot of folks who use [drugs] do mature out of it, but a lot of folks  don’t, and if you can catch the folks who aren’t going to, who are more  likely to have problems, and set them on a better path, the impact that  you could have is much larger than if you’re intervening when they’re 45.” 

Focus

Prescription drug misuse among young people 

Recent coverage

Breaking Bad Habits

Dr. Jose Garza, lecturer, College of Fine Arts and Communication

Focus

Music theory

“Music theorists, especially the handful of researchers discussing metal music, tend to focus on things like pitch, melody, harmony and lyrics. I felt that there were techniques artists were using in relation to rhythm and meter that were being somewhat taken for granted.”

Dr. Missy Fraser, assistant professor, College of Education

Focus

Biomechanics and sports medicine

“The heart of our mission is to have all of the research we do be clinically relevant. We want our work to directly benefit the athletes, coaches and athletic trainers.”

Dr. Toni Watt, professor, College of Liberal Arts

Focus

Child and adolescent health

“If we have a better understanding of how trauma affects the mind, body and behavior, then we can develop interventions that address the root cause of the problem, rather than offering treatments that only suppress the symptoms.”

Dr. Tahir Ekin, associate professor, McCoy College of Business Administration

Focus

Data analysis for detecting healthcare fraud

“We can flag specific transactions or provider networks for auditors or law enforcement to take the next step and investigate.”

Dr. Mark Wistey, associate professor, College of Science and Engineering

Focus

Materials science

“Our major strength in the Epitaxy Research Service Center is our ability to grow different kinds of materials on top of one another. Then we test them experimentally and with computer models.”

Dr. Son Chae Kim, professor, College of Health Professions

Focus

Prevention of patient violence in healthcare settings

“As healthcare providers, it is our duty to provide safety, comfort and care, to alleviate their suffering and pain, so that we can restore health. But if we are concerned about our own safety, our focus on patient care will be undermined.”

Dr. Robert McLean, Regents’ Professor, College of Science and Engineering

Focus

Polymicrobial growth in low-gravity environments

“In relative terms, there’s a small number of people who have sent this work to space… A discovery that was made here might help us get to Mars.”

Ivilina Popova, Tom and Jo Roddy Professor in Finance, McCoy College of Business

Focus

Derivatives pricing and portfolio management

“Standard models do not allow for default risk, extreme events and volatility regimes. I consider all of them in my research.”

Jiyun Kang, associate professor, College of Applied Arts

Focus

Corporate social responsibility initiatives

“Because of the global environment we live in, we are all global consumers. There are well-known challenges in the fashion industry involving labor, transparency and the environment. My research seeks to bridge the gap between companies’ socially responsible behavior and consumer decision-making so that both companies and consumers can be better informed to meet their needs.”

Semih Aslan, associate professor, College of Science and Engineering

Focus

Signal processing, internet of things

“One of the biggest problems we’re going to face in the future is freshwater shortage. Water will always need to be transported from point A to point B. We can determine if there are problems along the way and address them.”

Nathan Cannon, Scott Emerson Professor in Business Administration, McCoy College of Business

Focus

Auditing and financial reporting

“The bulk of my research to date focuses on specialized areas in accounting where I have developed a recognized expertise: fair value measurements and the broker dealer industry. I have been able to consult with U.S. regulators — including the SEC — on these research endeavors.”

Christopher Rhodes, assistant professor, College of Science and Engineering

Focus

Electrochemical energy storage and conversion

“We’re designing new materials and, broadly, looking at how their structure and properties correlate to give us something with some improvement. We mostly focus on nanomaterials that are going to have some improved performance or lower cost, that may be practical at the end of the day.”

Erica Nason, assistant professor, College of Applied Arts

Focus

Trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder

“Given some of the barriers that exist in rural communities, such as a lack of mental health providers, it’s important to think outside the box and identify mechanisms for increasing support.”

Ana Baer Carrillo, associate professor, College of Fine Arts and Communication

Focus

Dance choreography

“As a video-choreographer, my philosophy is to provide a habitat for experimentation, creation and reflection. I craft dance and video with the purpose of expressing the inner condition of underrepresented communities.”

Farzan Irani, associate professor, College of Health Professions

Focus

Interventions for stuttering

“The goal is not just that a person will take the two-week program and leave fluent, but rather to increase confidence in their speech to the point that they do not have to constantly think about how they are talking.”

Looking for more researchers?

To find more Texas State researchers, visit our faculty experts directory.