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. Tania Betancourt, Lead Researcher of Biomaterials and Nanomedicine Laboratory; Associate Professor, College of Science and Engineering

“I provide hands-on training to help students become competent scientists or engineers who can contribute in their own right. I love mentoring students—many of them may not have had any experience with science, and it is so rewarding to watch them learn and grow, realizing that they can have a career in this field.”


Nanomaterials in biomedicine

Dr. Emily Brunson, Associate Professor and Associate Chair, College of Liberal Arts

“We have the opportunity to change the way that public health works in the state and in the country, especially how it works with communities of color. We can repair the wrongs and oversights that have caused lack of trust and inequity in the past. We can move forward in a better direction than where we started.”


Medical anthropology

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.” 


Prescription drug misuse among young people 

Recent coverage

Breaking Bad Habits

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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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.”

Semih Aslan, associate professor, College of Science and Engineering


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


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


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


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


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


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.