And… “Welcome” Dr. Martin!

No, you’re not misreading that headline. Dr. Ryan Martin is the new Chair of Psychology, taking over from Dr. Wilson-Doenges who had served as Chair for past 6 years. If you need a course substitution form for psychology or have a psychology curriculum question, you should ask Dr. Martin. If you need your psychology internship, TA, or RA form signed, you still need to talk to Dr. Vespia instead, as that form is signed by the Interdisciplinary Unit (Human Development) Chair. As fellow co-editors of The Pink Flamingo, we can say with no bias whatsoever that we know Dr. Martin will do a great job.

Did You Know…About the Human Development Diversity Requirement?

In this recurring feature, we address common questions we hear and important facts we want to share. This month we highlight the Diversity Requirement for the Human Development major.

Did you know…that the diversity course (required only for Human Development majors under catalog years 2007-08, 2008-09, & 2009-10) shows up your SIS as “unmet” for every student until their advisor asks the Registrar’s Office to slot a course in for it (even if you have already fulfilled the requirement)? Unfortunately, the computer system just can’t handle the automatic programming for this one. To meet the requirement, you need to take an ADDITIONAL ethnic studies, world culture, or travel course (above and beyond what you took for your Gen Ed requirements and beyond those classes you will count as upper-level Human Development electives). If you are a foreign language major or minor, an upper-level foreign language class (not a grammar class) that is not counting for Gen Ed can also work. If you have taken a course that you believe meets this requirement, but it is still showing up as unmet (check your SIS report to confirm that FIRST), then contact your Human Development adviser so he/she can work with the Registrar’s Office to fix the issue.

Research Assistantships: A Student Perspective

When we first started writing The Pink Flamingo, we interviewed some students engaged in internships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships. We decided to conduct some new interviews with recent students. In our first installment, Matt Machnik tells us about his RA with Dr. Martin.

1. Who were you working with for your research assistantship (RA)?

Dr. Ryan Martin

2. How did you find out about the RA and go about getting it?

I first heard about the research assistant opportunities during classes. I talked to different professors about the opportunities that were available. I periodically checked the Human Development Want Ads until an RA opportunity became available that was of particular interest to me. Then, I simply emailed the professor involved with the project, filled out an application, had an interview, and was offered the RA.

3. What kinds of things did you get to do for your RA?

I was able to be involved in just about every step of the research process. There were weekly meetings held during which Dr. Martin, the other RAs, and I would discuss the different studies we were working on during the semester. We continually worked on the methodology for each of the studies, and each of the RAs was given opportunities to provide suggestions for how to improve, or “fine tune,” them.

In addition, I had the opportunity to run data collections. This was my favorite part. This involved actually carrying out the different studies we had planned. I thought it was especially enjoyable because it was great to see people completing the measures we spent so much time preparing. Afterward, I would code the data in SPSS. This process was especially helpful, as it allowed me additional practice with SPSS.

Beyond that, I completed a literature review on the subject of my choice. While the prospect of having to write a paper isn’t always exciting to students, I believe it was a great learning experience. It gave me the opportunity to spend time familiarizing myself with scientific literature, as well as hone my writing skills.

4. How do you think the RA related to what you have learned in your classes?

Generally speaking, it gave me a better understanding of the research process. Since so much of what is taught at UWGB is research driven, it is apparent that this increased understanding will be of use when considering how scientific knowledge is gained. In addition, it helped improve my ability to critically analyze scientific literature – a skill that will come in handy when completing research related class assignments.

I also feel that my experience in the RA program will be of use when completing my Honors Project/Independent Study. The RA provided an excellent example of the type of work that will be involved in developing my project. In essence, the RA was a “warm up” to the research process that I will be carrying out. I would highly recommend that anyone considering doing an Honors Project or Independent Study participate in the RA program first, as it will help them become more familiar with research as a whole.

5. How important has this RA been to your educational experience at UWGB, and why?

Quite important. The experience has proved to be an asset not only when completing the coursework, but also in other projects, such as my Independent Study, as well as the internship that I am currently involved in. I strongly believe that I am a much more competent student than I was before doing the research assistantship, and this has helped enrich my educational experience here at UWGB. I also believe that the improved experience while doing my undergraduate work will also help me become a stronger graduate student. Thus, I believe the experience will pay off both immediately and in my future endeavors as well.

Editors’ Note: Wondering about getting a research assistantship of your own? Read the faculty profiles on the Human Development and Psychology websites to learn who typically works with RAs. These profiles also provide information about the research topics of interest to these professors. As registration time draws nearer for the next semester, you can also check out the department “Want Ads” to see if any openings are listed. Not all faculty members will list their opportunities there, so you should also feel free to contact professors directly to see if they are looking for RAs and find out how to apply.

Registration Tips: Understanding Priority Registration, Pre-Requisites, and Internet Courses

Keep reading for the most up-to-date tips on Fall 2011 registration!

Priority Registration
Our policy of priority registration for upper-level Human Development classes will continue this fall. That means that Human Development majors and minors (and for HUM DEV 331, 332, and 343 Psychology majors and minors, too!) will have first access to our classes during registration. You’ll notice these classes will say “Reserved” in the on-line schedule of classes. Don’t let that worry you – they are “reserved” for YOU!

Pre-Requisites and Internet Courses
We get a number of questions about pre-requisites at this time of year. If you are curious about pre-requisites for a class, click on the hyperlink for the course name in the on-line “Schedule of Classes” you can access on the UWGB website.

Note that things listed after “P:” are required to enroll (e.g., “P: HUM DEV 210” would mean HUM DEV 210 needed to be taken before you could enroll in this class).

On the other hand, things listed after “REC:” are recommended (e.g., it’s recommended that you take HUM DEV 331 before HUM DEV 332, but it’s not required). Classes might also have a pre-requisite that you have a certain major or a certain class year in order to register. Keep this in mind, especially if you look at Internet courses. Many of these are offered through Adult Degree and have as a pre-requisite a major in Interdisciplinary Studies, BAS-IST, or Nursing. You will get an error message if you try to enroll in one of those courses and are not a major in one of the above programs. These classes include Sections 183 ONLY of the following: PSYCH 102, HUM DEV 210, HUM DEV 331, HUM DEV 332, HUM DEV 343, HUM DEV 345, HUM DEV 346, and HUM DEV 424. Note that you can request special permission to enroll in these classes (from the instructor and Adult Degree), but not until some time after priority registration has ended. Additional fees may also apply because they are Internet classes, which carry an additional $60 fee and are not included in the “tuition plateau” for full-time students (i.e., have to pay separately for these classes beyond your full-time tuition).