College of Liberal Arts

Current News

Leah Hampton

Michener Fellow’s Short Stories on Political Catastrophe Selected for $50,000 Keene Prize

Fri, May 19, 2017

“Boomer,” a short story by Leah Hampton that illustrated the impact of Trump’s election against the backdrop of destructive Appalachian wildfire, won the $50,000 Keene Prize for Literature at The University of Texas at Austin.

David Yeager

UT Researcher Awarded for Transformative Work in Developmental Psychology

Fri, May 19, 2017

David Yeager will receive the American Psychological Association’s 2018 Boyd McCandless Award for his substantial early career achievements in developmental psychology at The University of Texas at Austin.

A check ceremony of a previous Philanthropy: The Power of Giving class.

After Lesson in Philanthropy, UT Freshmen Give $75,000 to Charity

Wed, May 10, 2017

Freshmen at The University of Texas at Austin were given the task of designating $75,000 to nonprofit organizations who they believed needed it most — an annual assignment that teaches students the impact of philanthropy.

Nicole Wen

Finding the Right Fit: Psychology Graduate Student Discovers Her Calling in Cognitive Development

Thu, May 4, 2017

Nicole Wen always knew she wanted to work with children, but she wasn’t quite sure where that might lead. After exploring various career paths, she switched her major to psychology and discovered a newfound passion in cognitive development.

Drea Brown

Black Studies Celebrates First Doctoral Dissertation Defense

Thu, May 4, 2017

Drea Brown made University of Texas at Austin history this spring as the first doctoral candidate to defend a dissertation in the Department of African & African Diaspora Studies.

UT Army ROTC field training (1992).

Army Strong: UT Army ROTC Celebrates 70 Years

Mon, May 1, 2017

It's been 70 years since UT first established the Army ROTC program on campus, but getting the unit here wasn't easy.

The study published in

Hormone-Influenced Social Strategies Shape Social Hierarchy, Study Shows

Mon, Apr 24, 2017

In a game of chicken, the most aggressive players are fueled by testosterone and are more willing to harm others; and while it may be easy to demonize such hawkish behaviors, psychology researchers from The University of Texas at Austin say there is sound evolutionary reason for their existence.

LLILAS Benson director Virginia Gerrard will serve as the project director.

LLILAS Benson Receives Mellon Grant to Pioneer Archival Projects in Latin America

Mon, Apr 24, 2017

A $700,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation will fund a project that will help preserve vulnerable human rights documentation from Latin America and create a digitally accessible archive within LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections at The University of Texas at Austin.

Gabryella Desporte tells Dean Randy Diehl about her research.

Investigations on Display: Undergraduate Research Week 2017

Thu, Apr 20, 2017

On April 19, 16 liberal arts student researchers presented their projects to faculty and staff members, college administrators and Dean Randy Diehl at the Dean’s Research Reception.

The full report is available at

Research Team Tracks Complex Web of Monetary Sanctions in Nine States

Thu, Apr 20, 2017

The phrase “criminal justice system” may conjure images of courtrooms, juries and prison. But when justice is doled out, it can have a harsh impact on a person’s pocketbook, depending on where he or she lives, according to a cross-state analysis.

Sera Bonds (left) and Cameron Allen.

Humanities Institute Awards Local Non-Profit Professionals with Community Sabbaticals

Wed, Apr 19, 2017

The Humanities Institute at The University of Texas at Austin has announced the 2017 recipients of the Community Sabbatical program, which provides paid flexible leave time, faculty collaborators, and access to library resources to selected staff members of non-profit organizations in central Texas.

The new central Austin Public Library

Humanities Institute Community Sabbatical Grant Helps Shape Austin's New Public Library

Tue, Apr 18, 2017

Central public libraries in the 21st century are transforming to benefit modern communities through cultural programing, access to digital materials, providing more public space and educational partnerships.

Richard Flores and Esther Raizen.

UT Austin Receives $2 Million Grant for Interdisciplinary Training of Future Humanities Scholars

Thu, Apr 13, 2017

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded The University of Texas at Austin a $2 million, 4½-year grant to support a program that will provide specialized training and research skills to doctoral students in the humanities.

New research from the Human Brain Stimulation and Electrophysiology lab illuminate the fabric of the human memory and spatial navigation.

Human Cognitive Map Scales According to Surroundings

Wed, Apr 12, 2017

A new study published this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences refines our understanding of a human skill — the ability to instantaneously assess a new environment and get oriented thanks to visual cues.

Madison Gehler, an international relations and global studies senior, flashes a

UT Austin Army ROTC No. 1 in the Nation at Annual Sandhurst Competition

Tue, Apr 11, 2017

After two days of traversing 25 miles of mountainous, heavily wooded terrain with full packs, Army cadets from The University of Texas at Austin can now relax as the No. 1 ROTC team in the nation after the 50th annual Sandhurst Military Skills Competition.

kihana miraya ross is an IUPRA postdoctoral researcher.

Ford Foundation Awards Fellowship to Advance the Study of Black Student Activism and Identities

Fri, Apr 7, 2017

The Ford Foundation has awarded a postdoctoral fellowship to UT Austin Black Studies researcher kihana miraya ross for her research on black student identity development and the conflict between widespread student activism and the current sociopolitical environment.

The study showed high impostor feelings were a positive predictor of anxiety and worsened the impact of perceived discrimination on depression.

Impostor Feelings Fuel Negative Mental Health Outcomes for Minority Students, Study

Wed, Apr 5, 2017

While perceived discrimination on college campuses compromises the self-esteem, well-being and mental health of ethnic minority students, new psychology research from The University of Texas at Austin suggests the impostor phenomenon may worsen these effects.

Image courtesy of Elena Poiata.

New Approach Developed by Humanists and Scientists Maps Evolution of Literature

Wed, Apr 5, 2017

A classicist, biologist and computer scientist all walk into a room — what comes next isn’t the punchline but a new method to analyze relationships among ancient Latin and Greek texts, developed in part by researchers from The University of Texas at Austin.

Dean Randy Diehl

2017 Dean's Distinguished Graduates Announced

Tue, Apr 4, 2017

Twelve graduating seniors have been named Dean’s Distinguished Graduates, the highest award offered by the College of Liberal Arts.

Rudy Ramirez (director), Jeffery Johnson (actor), Lisa B. Thompson (playwright) and Marc Pouhe´ (actor). Photo credit: Errich Petersen.

Original Play "Underground" Premiers in Austin

Wed, Mar 29, 2017

“Underground,” a play written by African and African Diaspora studies associate professor Lisa B. Thompson, considers the ways in which African American activists, artists and intellectuals have responded from the civil rights movement to the Black Lives Matter movement and beyond.

Alina Tonu

Wise Wanderer: Alina Tonu Travels to Cambodia

Wed, Mar 22, 2017

Studying abroad is central to a liberal arts education, allowing students to experience culture and perspectives that differ from their own firsthand.

From left: Nate Powell, John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

MEDIA ADVISORY: MARCH! Authors to Discuss Memoir on Civil Rights

Tue, Mar 21, 2017

Co-authors of the graphic memoir “MARCH,” which exposes the fear, fight and freedom won through political engagement during the civil rights era, will visit The University of Texas at Austin for a book talk. The conversation will follow a screening of the newly released film “Get in the Way: The Journey of John Lewis.”

James Henson interviews Speaker Joe Straus (right), 2015. Photo by Ryan Miller, Texas Politics Project

Texas Politics Speaker Series Presents a Live-Streamed Conversation with House Speaker Joe Straus

Tue, Mar 21, 2017

Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Joe Straus will address policy issues facing the 85th Texas Legislature, including state’s budget, public education, as well as the implications of the 2016 election for Texas, in a live-streamed interview, lead by James Henson, director of the Texas Politics Project.

Comparison of the positioning of the foramen magnum in a bipedal springhare (left) and its closest quadrupedal relative, the scaly-tailed squirrel (right).

Human Skull Evolved Along with Two-Legged Walking, Study Confirms

Fri, Mar 17, 2017

The evolution of bipedalism in fossil humans can be detected using a key feature of the skull — a claim that was previously contested but now has been further validated by researchers at Stony Brook University and The University of Texas at Austin.

Photo by Christina S. Murrey

Black Studies Professor Inducted into Academy of Distinguished Teachers

Thu, Mar 16, 2017

Director of the Institute for Urban Policy Research & Analysis Kevin O. Cokley has been selected as a Fellow in The University of Texas System Academy of Distinguished Teachers.

College of Liberal Arts building

U.S. News Ranks Two UT Liberal Arts Programs Among Nation's Top 10

Tue, Mar 14, 2017

The Latin American history and sociology of population programs landed No. 1 spots on this year’s list of “Best Graduate Schools” by U.S. News & World Report, released this morning.

Image by Dawn Hudson.

Conformity is not a universal indicator of intelligence in children, study says

Thu, Mar 9, 2017

Because innovation is part of the American culture, adults in the United States may be less likely to associate children’s conformity with intelligence than adults from other populations, according to research from developmental psychologists at The University of Texas at Austin.

Image by Marines from Arlington, VA, United States.

PTSD Risk Can Be Predicted by Hormone Levels Prior to Deployment, Study Says

Tue, Mar 7, 2017

Up to 20 percent of U.S. veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan developed symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder from trauma experienced during wartime, but new neuroscience research from The University of Texas at Austin suggests some soldiers might have a hormonal predisposition to experience such stress-related disorders.

Photo by Christina S. Murrey

Caring for Black Male Students Requires More Than Good Intentions

Mon, Mar 6, 2017

Earlier this year, a video of English teacher Barry White Jr.’s unique handshakes with each of his students went viral. In the video, White, who is black, greeted each of his students at the predominately black elementary school with elaborate high-fives that he said were based around each student’s personality and helped him connect with each child.

Evan Osnos

Evan Osnos to Deliver Ho Distinguished Lecture on China and the “Age of Ambition”

Mon, Mar 6, 2017

Using his years of experience as the New Yorker’s Beijing correspondent, Evan Osnos will share his 360-degree perspective of the most talked about country in the world — China — at this year’s Paul and Mary Ho Distinguished Lecture at The University of Texas at Austin.

Photo by Vic, Flickr.

New Research Examines Barriers to Texas Clinics Providing Vasectomy

Thu, Mar 2, 2017

New research from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) at The University of Texas at Austin provides insight into why vasectomy is not more widely available at family planning clinics in Texas.

Photo by Brian Birzer

Unveiling Stories of the Black Diaspora through Art Collecting

Tue, Feb 28, 2017

It all started with a limited edition print, titled “Carnival Clown” — a colorful depiction of a clown leaping with his whip in the air — purchased from an artist from Saint Kitts.

Photo by Gage Skidmore.

Gov. Abbott Receives Top Job Approval Ratings Among State Leaders in Latest UT/TT Poll

Thu, Feb 23, 2017

Texans gave Gov. Greg Abbott top ratings among the major statewide elected officials in results from the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll released today.