College of Liberal Arts

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Itzik Gottesman is a senior lecturer in the Department of Germanic Studies

Yiddish on the Rise

Mon, Nov 18, 2019

Mercedes Holmes (left) and Isaac James (right)

Rising Stars: Q&A with the 2019 Larry Temple Scholars

Fri, Nov 8, 2019

Starting the semester with an extra $11,000 in the bank is an experience that two liberal arts sophomores have every fall, thanks to the Larry Temple Scholarship Endowment.

When asked whom they want as the Democratic nominee, the majority (23%) of likely Texas Democratic presidential primary voters chose Joe Biden. (Photo by Tommy Gilligan/USMA Public Affairs)

UT/TT Poll: Texas Voters Prefer Trump in 2020, With Some Reservations

Mon, Nov 4, 2019

Although a slight majority of Texas voters say they would rather vote for someone else than reelect President Donald Trump in 2020, none of the leading Democratic candidates currently has enough support to turn the Lone Star State blue in the presidential election, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

Secretary Johnson looks out over Levi’s Stadium during security preparations for Super Bowl 50. Photo by Jetta Disco, DHS Office of Public Affairs.

Research Debunks Myth of Super Bowl Sex Trafficking, Improves Media Narrative

Wed, Oct 30, 2019

For years news outlets have tied major sporting events to an increase in sex trafficking, but researchers have now revealed that assumption is a myth and that misleading news stories foster distorted views and misguided interventions that do not reduce harm or protect victims.

Photo by iStock

Deaf Infants’ Gaze Behavior More Advanced Than That of Hearing Infants

Wed, Oct 16, 2019

Deaf infants who have been exposed to American Sign Language are better at following an adult’s gaze than their hearing peers, supporting the idea that social-cognitive development is sensitive to different kinds of life experiences.

Illustration by Abriella Corker and Thuy Nguyen, UT Austin LAITS.

Three Questions to Ask When You're Stressed Out

Tue, Oct 8, 2019

From big class presentations and midterms to navigating the social scene and balancing a large workload, the school year — and life in general — brings on stress, but asking yourself three questions can help fight anxiety with curiosity rather than panic.

A lidar-derived model of the Birds of Paradise ancient Maya wetland field system and parts of the nearby Maya sites in Northwestern Belize. Image courtesy of Tim Beach, UT Austin.

Ancient Maya Canals and Fields Show Early and Extensive Impacts on Tropical Forests

Mon, Oct 7, 2019

New evidence in Belize shows the ancient Maya responded to population and environmental pressures by creating massive agricultural features in wetlands, potentially increasing atmospheric CO2 and methane through burn events and farming, according to geographical research at The University of Texas at Austin published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Photo courtesy of The Gender Spectrum Collection

Women's and Gender Studies Offers New Five-Year BA/MA Degree

Wed, Sep 25, 2019

Women’s and Gender Studies (WGS) at The University of Texas is offering a new combined five-year bachelor’s and master’s program.

A smock maker in Tamale, northern Ghana.

The Color Complex: Student Research Abroad in Ghana

Tue, Sep 24, 2019

This summer, an International Relations and Global Studies senior was awarded the experience of a lifetime when her student research team received the UT President’s Award for Global Learning. Christina Cho and a team of three other undergraduates traveled to Accra, Ghana, for 10 weeks to research colorism and how to mitigate its effect on mental health.

In a close race, the less popular candidate has a 45% chance of becoming president.

Why the Most Popular Candidate in a Close Election Will Probably Lose

Thu, Sep 19, 2019

, the researchers estimate that if someone loses the popular vote by within 1%, or 1.3 million votes, he or she has a 45% chance of winning the election.

Photo by Christopher Dilts, flikr

UT/TT Poll: Biden Leads Democratic Presidential Nomination Race in Texas

Wed, Sep 11, 2019

On the eve of the latest debate among the 10 qualifying Democratic presidential candidates, a University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll finds former Vice President Joe Biden the top choice among Texans who plan to vote in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary.

A Voudou flag by Myrlande Constate. Image courtesy of AGBS.

Art Galleries at Black Studies Presents: "Lingua Franca"

Wed, Sep 4, 2019

From Hatian Voudou flags to surrealists prints and paintings, “Lingua Franca: Black Spirit Speaks in Common Tongues,” on view now at the Idea Lab, exposes the deep and shared roots of African spiritual culture across the Back diaspora.

Photo by Adobe Stock.

New Testosterone Nasal Spray Offers Patients an Alternative

Tue, Sep 3, 2019

A newly patented, testosterone-containing nasal spray developed by a psychology professor at The University of Texas at Austin could provide those suffering from testosterone deficiency and other ailments, such as anxiety disorders, with easily modulated, fast-acting results.

Patton Hall

New Year, New Liberal Arts Faculty

Tue, Aug 27, 2019

This academic year, the College of Liberal Arts welcomes 17 new faculty members to the 40 acres.

The Housing Authority of the City of Austin headquarters, Austin, Texas, United States.  Photo by Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 3.0.

Unlocking affordable housing in Austin

Wed, Aug 14, 2019

While Austin as a whole may not be rent burdened, the majority of its black and Latino households are. Equally as frustrating, these communities are also more frequently targeted by investors chasing lower housing values.

Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay

Testosterone has a Complicated Relationship with Moral Reasoning, Study Finds

Wed, Aug 14, 2019

Although some studies have linked high levels of testosterone to immoral behavior, a new study published in Nature Human Behaviour finds testosterone supplements actually made people more sensitive to moral norms, suggesting that testosterone’s influence on behavior is more complicated than previously thought.

The black-handed spider monkey sits in a tree depicting the major threats to the species’ existence in its root system — agriculture, farming. Illustration by Michelle Bezanson, Santa Clara University

Research Bias May Leave Some Primates at Risk

Tue, Aug 13, 2019

Recent primate research has had a heavy focus on a few charismatic species and nationally protected parks and forests, leaving some lesser known primates and their habitats at risk, according researchers at The University of Texas at Austin and Santa Clara University.

Image by UT Austin.

Timeline Tool Connects the Dots

Thu, Aug 8, 2019

History professor Erika Bsumek designed a timeline tool to help students track and connect historic events in a visual and collaborative way.

Image by Kevin Rathge, UT Austin

A Growth Mindset Intervention Can Change Students’ Grades if School Culture is Supportive

Wed, Aug 7, 2019

Boosting academic success does not have to derive from new teachers or curriculum; it can also come from changing students’ attitudes about their abilities through a short online intervention, according to the latest findings from the National Study of Learning Mindsets published in Nature on Aug. 7.

Camp Alba students. Photo by Kitty Murray.

Camp Alba

Mon, Aug 5, 2019

After spending three days on the University of Texas at Austin campus, sixth graders from Martin Middle School left with a greater sense of connection to their communities and their first single track, produced by hip-hop artist and activist Olmeca.

Image by Winold Reiss.

On the Road with Langston Hughes: A Newly Discovered Essay on Race in America

Mon, Jul 15, 2019

Historical research can be exhausting work. Hours spent sifting through archives in search of elusive details from the past may yield nothing, but it may lead to an extraordinary discovery.

Fighting for Change: A Q&A with the 2019 Randy Diehl Prize Recipient

Fighting for Change: A Q&A with the 2019 Randy Diehl Prize Recipient

Thu, Jul 11, 2019

Megan Abrameit, a psychology and humanities double major from Tyler, Texas, has received the 2019 Randy Diehl Prize in Liberal Arts.

The Texas Capitol

UT/TT Poll: Texas Voters Split Evenly on Reelecting Trump in 2020; Biden and O’Rourke Lead Democratic Pack

Mon, Jun 17, 2019

Given the choice of reelecting President Donald Trump or voting for someone else, Texas voters are equally divided, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll. Among Democrats vying for the Democratic presidential nomination, former Vice President Joe Biden leads the crowded pack.

Aerial view of center-pivot irrigation farming in Kansas. Image: NASA

Finding Common Ground in Water

Tue, Jun 4, 2019

When pressed to summarize the path of his wide spanning career, Paul Adams offers one word, “discourse.”

College of Liberal Arts Building

Awards, Fellowships Recognize Teaching Excellence

Mon, Jun 3, 2019

The University of Texas at Austin and the College of Liberal Arts are honoring 22 faculty members in the college for their teaching excellence. Recipients of university-wide teaching awards for 2018-19 include:

Design Thinking

Design Thinking

Fri, May 31, 2019

Daunting problems require new ideas and a new way of thinking — design thinking.

A $12.9 million grant from NIA will fund research on how high school education effects brain health later in life.

Grading Brain Health

Mon, May 13, 2019

High school experiences follow you long after you’ve graduated, shaping your professional success and even your health. Now, researchers are investigating how it could contribute to your future brain health and maybe even impact your likelihood of getting Alzheimer’s Disease.

Harris, Tarrant and Travis counties in Texas are among the top 25 U.S. counties at-risk for a measles outbreak, researchers warned.

25 U.S. Counties Identified as Most at Risk for Measles Outbreaks

Mon, May 13, 2019

Twenty-five counties across the country have been identified to be most at risk for a measles outbreak due to low-vaccination rates compounded by a high volume of international travel, according to an analysis by researchers at The University of Texas at Austin and Johns Hopkins University.

From left: Tracey Rose, Sindya Bhanoo, Raye Hendrix and Hedgie Choi. Photo by Brian Birzer.

2019 Keene Prize Winners

Mon, May 6, 2019

For her poetry on life and death in the rural South, Raye Hendrix was awarded the $50,000 Keene Prize for Literature at The University of Texas at Austin, the largest literary prize for students in the United States.

Marina Alexandrova. Photo by Matt Wright-Steel

The 2019 Texas Ten

Fri, May 3, 2019

Ten talented University of Texas at Austin professors have been selected by the Alcalde to be a part of the annual Texas Ten awards.

Rep. Lance Gooden, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Professor Sean Theriault during Gooden's swearing-in ceremony

From UT to DC

Thu, May 2, 2019

Lance Gooden exemplified what it means to be a University of Texas at Austin graduate as he stepped into the role of United States Representative earlier this year.

Photo by Sadham Yathra, Pixabay.

The Earth's Keepers

Mon, Apr 22, 2019

If you knew in the next life you’d become a tree, you might hesitate before you cut one down.

Thomaia Pamplin speaks to Dean Randy Diehl about her research project.

Student Projects Shine During Dean's Research Reception

Fri, Apr 19, 2019

On April 18, a group of hand-picked liberal arts students who have conducted exceptional research projects presented their posters at the Dean’s Research Reception. College faculty and staff, administrators and Dean Randy Diehl all gathered to learn about the outstanding work liberal arts students have conducted.

Illustration by George Wylesol

Teens’ Appetite for Rebellion Can Counter Their Appetite for Junk Food

Mon, Apr 15, 2019

Researchers have suggested for years that the enormous amount of food marketing bombarding kids and teens contributes to rising levels of obesity. New research published in Nature Human Behaviour suggests an ingenious workaround: exposing teenagers to the food industry’s manipulative marketing techniques to tap into their natural desire to rebel — this time, against the snack makers themselves.

Dean Randy Diehl shaking hands with a student.

2019 Dean's Distinguished Graduates Announced

Sun, Apr 14, 2019

Twelve graduating liberal arts seniors have been named Dean’s Distinguished Graduates.

Alyssa Ashcraft

UT Government and Humanities Student Named Truman Scholar

Fri, Apr 12, 2019

One of the country’s premier graduate awards, the Harry S. Truman Scholarship, has been awarded to Alyssa Ashcraft, a government and humanities junior at The University of Texas at Austin, who will use the award to pursue a dual degree in law and public policy.

Detachment 825

Team of the Year

Mon, Apr 8, 2019

Out of 145 Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) detachments across the country, Detachment 825 of the University of Texas at Austin was named the Team of the Year.

Image courtesy of the Thinkery.

Simple Directions From Parents Can Guide Children’s Discovery

Thu, Mar 14, 2019

Whether it’s probing a child’s understanding of a topic through questions or engaging in hands-on activities alongside them, parents can guide their children to learn in new ways through simple directions, according to a study by psychology researchers at The University of Texas at Austin.

Follow Your Arts Desire

Thu, Mar 14, 2019

There are two shows currently on display at the Art Galleries at Black Studies (AGBS) and the Benson Latin American Collection which spotlight both diverse artists and the wealth or art resources here at UT Austin.

UT Austin research represented a fifth of the articles recognized in the LSA's third edition of

UT studies recognized as “The Best of Language” research

Thu, Mar 14, 2019

Research by four University of Texas at Austin liberal arts faculty members has been named The Best of Language research by the Linguistic Society of America.

Researchers found that successful intentional forgetting required “moderate levels” of brain activity in these sensory and perceptual areas of the brain.

Forgetting Uses More Brain Power Than Remembering

Mon, Mar 11, 2019

Choosing to forget something might take more mental effort than trying to remember it, researchers at The University of Texas at Austin discovered through neuroimaging.

A fossil mandible of the newly discovered ancient Old World monkey, Alophia. It is dated to 22 million years in age and measures 3.7 cm in length.

Fossil Teeth from Kenya Solve Ancient Monkey Mystery

Mon, Mar 11, 2019

The teeth of a new fossil monkey, unearthed in the badlands of northwest Kenya, help fill a 6-million-year void in Old World monkey evolution, according to a study by U.S. and Kenyan scientists published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Crosnoe, sociology professor and chair

Sociology Chair Recognized for Career Achievement

Thu, Mar 7, 2019

The Society for Research in Child Development has recognized University of Texas at Austin sociologist Rob Crosnoe for his distinguished career contributions to the study of child development.

Beto O’Rourke being interviewed at the 2012 Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce Candidate Forum for Democratic Candidates for the 16th Congressional District of Texas. Photo courtesy of the Beto O’Rou

UT/TT Poll: O’Rourke Outpacing Castro; Trump Position Stable as Texans Look to 2020

Tue, Mar 5, 2019

Former Democratic U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke is more widely known among both Democrats and Republicans in Texas than fellow Democrat Julián Castro, former mayor of San Antonio, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll. Castro announced his candidacy Jan. 12. O’Rourke is expected to announce his presidential bid within weeks.

The Texas Capitol.

UT/TT Poll: Texans Embrace Legislative Focus on Public Education, Property Taxes

Mon, Mar 4, 2019

Public education and property taxes are dominating the agenda of the 140-day Texas legislative session now underway, and findings in the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll suggest that these efforts resonate with the concerns of Texas voters.

Madison Gehler (Army ROTC alum, 2017) flashes a

UT Austin Army ROTC Named a Nation’s Top Program, Recognizes Teaching Excellence

Wed, Feb 27, 2019

The University of Texas at Austin Army ROTC program was one of eight programs selected nationwide as a 2018 General Douglas MacArthur Award winner for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Having acquaintances or peripheral ties may encourage older adults to be more physically active, researchers said.

Interacting With More People is Shown to Keep Older Adults More Active

Wed, Feb 20, 2019

It’s been said that variety is the spice of life, and now scientists say variety in your social circle may help you live longer. Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have found that older adults who spend more time interacting with a wide range of people were more likely to be physically active and had greater emotional well-being.

Last year's participants from Sweden post with  IC² staff and Austin Technology Incubator director Mitch Jacobson and the Bureau of Business Research director J. Bruce Kellison.

UT Invites EU Startups to SXSW

Tue, Feb 12, 2019

The University of Texas at Austin will bring twelve budding European companies to learn and explore with local business experts at this year’s South by Southwest Interactive Festival (SXSW), March 8 – March 16 in Austin, Texas.

Donald Trump at a campaign rally in Prescott Valley, Arizona. Photo by Gage Skidmore, Flickr.

Trump’s Simple, Confident Language Has Strong Historical Roots

Mon, Feb 11, 2019

To many, President Donald Trump’s use of nontraditional, off-the-cuff language seems unlike that of any other politician, but new research on the language of past and present world leaders reveals simple, straightforward messaging that exudes confidence may be the new norm — making Trump a man of his time, rhetorically speaking.

The Texas Capitol

UT Austin Researchers Pull the Veil on Texas Enterprise Fund

Wed, Feb 6, 2019

Companies awarded grants from the Texas Enterprise Fund may not be upholding their end of the bargain, leaving taxpayers unprotected, researchers from the University of Texas at Austin found through an open records request.

The annual MLK march, held at UT Austin campus. Photo by Raul Buitrago.

Black Studies @ 50 Conference Looks Back to Move Forward

Mon, Feb 4, 2019

The Black Studies @ 50: 1968/1969 conference, hosted at The University of Texas at Austin, calls on scholars, artists and communities to continue the legacy of 1960s activists who helped institute black studies across American university campuses.

Sukjin Han in a spacesuit designed by RISD. Photo by Calum Hervieu.

A Week on Mars

Fri, Feb 1, 2019

For most, going to Mars is merely a childhood dream, but for Sukjin Han, that dream became a reality — all while never leaving Earth.

Co-directors Karen Fingerman and Deb Umberson at the Texas Aging & Longevity Center launch, Jan. 25, 2019. Photo by Edwin Rodriguez.

UT Austin Launches Texas Aging & Longevity Center

Thu, Jan 31, 2019

Not all people experience their twilight years in the same way. Some will be hearty triathletes traveling the world and writing novels, while others will be hobbled by chronic illness and dementia. Fifteen percent of Texans — nearly four million people — are aged 65 and older, and that number is growing. By 2040, older adults will make up 22 percent of the population.

Ann Huff Stevens

Meet Ann Huff Stevens: A Q&A with Our Next Dean

Wed, Jan 30, 2019

Ann Huff Stevens will begin as dean of the College of Liberal Arts on July 15, 2019.

Volunteer instructors Sarah Brayne, Lindsay Bing and Armando Tellez on the first day of class with TPEI.

A Different Kind of Prison Sentence

Tue, Jan 29, 2019

Texas has the largest prison population in the U.S., and among the highest rate of incarceration for all age groups. And yet when assistant professor of sociology Sarah Brayne arrived at The University of Texas at Austin she found no campus-wide prison education program, despite evidence that such programs significantly reduce recidivism rates.

When responding to unexpected disasters, public leaders should keep language simple, researchers said.

When an Unexpected Disaster Strikes, Abstract Language Helps

Mon, Jan 28, 2019

Shocking events, such as mass shootings and natural disasters, can create causal uncertainty, leading many to ask, “Why did this happen?” For public leaders, providing their communities with answers can be difficult, but new research on Twitter users shows the best messages are simple and on point.

TALC will serve as a hub for research and education on aging at UT Austin.

New Center to Address Future Needs of Texas’ Growing Elderly Population

Wed, Jan 23, 2019

To improve the longevity and well-being of aging individuals across all demographics, The University of Texas at Austin will launch the Texas Aging & Longevity Center.

Hancock has been invited to join the commission in charge of building the memorial for the Roma who were murdered during the Holocaust at Lety u Písku.

Queen Elizabeth II Honors Activism by UT Austin Romani Scholar

Fri, Jan 18, 2019

Romani linguist and University of Texas at Austin professor emeritus Ian Hancock was recently made an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II for his contributions to understanding of creole linguistics, the Romani language and to the emancipation of Romani people.

Ann Huff Stevens

Ann Huff Stevens Appointed Dean of UT Austin College of Liberal Arts

Wed, Jan 9, 2019

The University of Texas at Austin has named Ann Huff Stevens the next dean of the College of Liberal Arts. Her appointment will begin July 15, 2019.

40 percent of Texans believe Russian interference played a role in the outcome of the 2016 election (UT/TT poll)

Trolling the U.S.: Q&A on Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election

Wed, Jan 9, 2019

It’s been more than two years since the 2016 presidential election, and the United States is still piecing together Russia’s propaganda-filled interference in U.S. political conversations on social media.

Study participants identified 12 peer crowds and their positions in the social hierarchy.

How Today’s High School Cliques Compare to Yesterday’s

Tue, Jan 8, 2019

While many high school peer crowds and influences have remained constant over time, changing demographics, cultural influences and the increasing number of college-bound youth have led to the emergence of new peer groups and perceptions, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and the University of Texas at Austin.