Posts Tagged ‘Research’

The power of baby animal pictures

Tuesday, October 9th, 2012


Good news for those of us who can’t stop looking at pictures of adorable baby animals – scientists in Japan have found that doing so gives us more than just a smile.


In a series of experiments, researches at Hiroshima University had university students look at pictures of baby animals, adult animals and pleasant food before doing various tasks. The students given pictures of baby animals did better than the other students, leading the researches to believe that looking at cute baby animal pictures narrows attentional focus and promotes careful behaviour – boosting productivity.


The Japanese scientists believe that “The Power of Kawaii (cute)” will help you perform better in your day-to-day life, particularly when driving or doing office work.

Works for me!

Click here to learn more about the study.


Student Summer Lecture Series

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

Stop by the Sydney Credit Union Room tomorrow (July 4) at noon to hear from two researchers at CBU.

The lectures are as follows:

Kelsey Aucoin: Environmental Analytical Chemistry and Green Energy Projects in Tamil Nadu

Brittany Morrison: Anxiety & Willingness to Communicate: Idiodynamic Patterns in Cross-Cultural Dyads

For more information about the Lecture Series or to find out more about CBU research, visit the following:!/cburesearch

Presenting Research – Guest Blog by Alyssa MacDougall

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

In late May, CBU student researcher Alyssa MacDougall had the opportunity to present our research with Dr. Ruby Ramji at “The Study of Religion in Atlantic Canada” conference in Halifax along with several graduate students from the Atlantic provinces. (That’s right – Alyssa was the only undergrad student presenting!)

Alyssa was kind enough to share her experience with us, as you’ll see below.

Thanks Alyssa!


This past school year I’ve had the pleasure of working with Dr. Ruby Ramji and Lucy on a database of media articles pertaining to the ban on the burqa in public places such as in France. My work was all done in French, while Lucy organized the database and acquired a plethora of information in English. The end product is not yet available online, but I believe it will be very soon.

I’ve always been a big believer in learning through experience so when Ruby approached me with the idea of presenting this research at “The Study of Religion in Atlantic Canada: Diverse Disciplines, Theories, Methods and Contexts” conference in Halifax, I wasted no time in sending in my abstract.

Luckily I’ve never been the type to be nervous about presentations because by the time that presentation rolled around I could barely sleep! I was the only undergrad presenting research at the conference. Can you say intimidated? Regardless, I got up and went through my PowerPoint and I was shocked at how easily it came to me. Everyone was extremely interested in our research and I was pleased that they took the time to ask questions.

I had a ton of fun presenting our research, not only because I am passionate about what I do, but also because it was so successful. It is extremely satisfying when you put a significant amount of work into something and the end product intrigues and interests people. It was a great experience and now the first time is over with; I have experience for any presentations I need to do in the future and, realistically that could be a major part of my career.

I’ve always been a big believer in diving into a daunting task headfirst and that philosophy certainly didn’t fail me in this case. I would encourage everyone to take an opportunity like this should it present itself. I was so glad that I did it, despite being nervous. Also, in the process I learned a lot about the other fascinating research being done in my field throughout the Atlantic Provinces.

In her presentation, Ruby made the point that academic networking is an important part of any career stemming from a university degree and learning about the research that others are doing, as well as presenting yours, is a great way to build that network. She is totally right and opportunities like this are ideal for helping to build that network. They bring scholars together in a central location where we can meet and shake hands and talk face-to-face rather than over email or text, which is typical in an area like the Atlantic Provinces in which academics tend to be secluded from one another.

The endeavour that began with Ruby approaching me with this project in October culminated very satisfactorily with the interest mine and Lucy’s colleagues showed in our research at this conference. As I said, it’s certainly been a pleasure working with them. I am looking forward to seeing what may spawn from this project and I am certainly anticipating learning about the work they will do in the future.

What’s Up?

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

How is everyone doing?

Since my full-time school schedule has been over, I have been keeping very busy. You already know some of the things I’ve been doing, like: baking delicious cookies, hiking, and vacationing in Cuba, but that’s not all I’m up to…

I also got a bike! I’ve been enjoying the warm weather by cruising around Sydney. Sales on bikes are frequent, so pick one up too and we can meet up!

Proud new bike owner!

Aside from the “fun” stuff, I’ve been taking a spring course online. I have really enjoyed the course thus far. At first I was hesitant of the online format but my classmates and I are still carrying on discussions, and I haven’t had a problem finding motivation to do the work. I’d definitely recommend taking an online course over the spring or summer as it will free up your time during the year and it keeps your mind challenged.

Introduction to Folklore (FOLK1103)

From there, I have been studying for my LSAT. This is a 4-hour long exam that is necessary to write if you want to apply to law school. I write the exam on June 11. I am not totally excited, but it has been an interesting process and I look forward to finally writing it soon! I will make sure to fill you in on all of the details when it’s over.

My two best friends!

I’m also researching for my professor. Our research is winding down because the database we are working on is slowly reaching completion. As I’ve worked on the research for over a year, I don’t know what I’ll do when it’s over. Suggestions?

That’s all I’ve been up to! What about you?

Research at CBU

Friday, May 27th, 2011

One of the best parts of being a student – particularly at CBU – is being able to do research with a professor.

There are many positions on campus, giving you a chance to get involved with your studies and make some money, while gaining invaluable experience on your CV.

Since my first year at CBU, I’ve been Dr. Rubina Ramji’s research assistant. Over the years we have done many different things, the bulk of which include studying multiculturalism in Atlantic Canada, putting on focus groups, transcribing interviews, and so on.

This year I am working on creating a database for academics, which include information on the history of the hijab and niqab. The research is definitely challenging, but is so interesting too. I have until the end of August to find roughly 300 sources, which will be books, journals, articles, videos and more. It will certainly be a masterpiece when finished (I hope)!

That’s what I have been up to, even while in Europe, but others are back at CBU and around the community doing other incredible research. Lucky for you, curious readers, CBU has put on a student lecture series this summer where student researches present the research they are participating in. How cool is that?

The lecture series begun May 25th, but upcoming lectures can be found here.

If you’re a student researcher looking to present your own research this summer, contact Emily MacLeod at

For more information on CBU’s research, visit: