BUILD PODER

College of Health and Human Development

 

Child & Adolescent Development

Tissyana Camacho

Tissyana Camacho

Mentor Bio

Dr. Camacho obtained a B.A. in Psychology from CSU Northridge and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at the University of Michigan. Her research examines ethnic identity development among students of color across the educational pipeline, with a focus on Latino college students.

Research Project

My research examines the developmental nature of ethnic identity (i.e., how ethnic identity changes over time), how ethnic identity develops (i.e., the experiences that contribute to changes in ethnic identity), and how ethnic identity is related to psychological and academic outcomes. I study these topics using multiple methods (e.g., longitudinal survey data and semi-structured interviews) and with ethnically and racially diverse adolescent and young adult populations. My BUILD PODER research assistants will focus on a mixed-methods project where approximately 30-40 self-identified Latino/a college students were interviewed regarding their ethnicity-related experiences in college. The purpose of this project was to explore how academic and social experiences in college contribute to how one understands his or herself in terms of ethnic identity. For this project, research assistants will be expected transcribe audio files, code semi-structured interview data, and conduct quantitative and qualitative data analysis under the my supervision.

Conferences

I primarily attend the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) conference and the Society for Research in Adolescence (SRA) conference. In the future, I expect to attend the Society for the Study of Emerging Adulthood (SSEA) conference and the Western Psychological Association (WPA) conference.

Publications

Previous publications can be found on my Google Scholar Page

Kandice Grote

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

Mentor Bio

The opportunity to mentor students through the research process, at the undergraduate level, is a part of my career that has proved to be an invaluable opportunity. I am a developmental cognitive research psychologist by training. At my previous institution (UC Merced), I mentored 8 students and 12 students from CSUN who have gone onto successful graduate careers.

Title of Research Project

The cognitive flexibility of bilingualism.
Lab website – www.csunorangelab.com 

Background and Purpose

The current research examines cognitive flexibility and benefits of bilingualism and possible mechanisms related to advanced cognition by which such benefits operate. Although older balanced bilinguals (proficient in two languages) display several cognitive advantages (Bialystok, 2001; Hakuta & Gould, 1987) when compared to monolinguals, less is known about when such benefits begin during early development. In an effort to examine potential advantages of early bilinguals, this research utilizes a series of visual-spatial memory (spatial cues to remember where missing objects are located), executive functioning tasks, and growth mindset. In addition, this research investigates the influence of several methodological factors on cognitive performance including socioeconomic status (SES), age, and language group.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

#1: What possible visual-spatial memory and executive functioning advantages exist among early bilingual children vs. monolingual children? #2: Is there a relationship between executive functioning and advanced visual-spatial memory?
#3: What is the relationship between components of growth mindset and bilingual cognitive flexibility?

Method

Mixed method designs. Tools include: SPSS, experimental designs. Please see “Student Roles” for more information.

Expectations

Mentees should be excited to share their own expertise and apply their on-training. I expect mentees to have an ‘evolutionary approach’ to their experiences in my lab and be excited to learn and contributed to their own research training.

Student Roles

All students (regardless of school year) will have an opportunity to participate in all aspects of the research process, including literature review (e.g. how to identify relevant articles and summarize findings), experimental design and stimuli creation (e.g. collaborative discussion of experimentation methodology), working with participants (e.g. how to recruit participants, obtaining consent, executing research protocols), and coding/SPSS analysis (e.g. how to transcribe, code, and analyze data). All language group performances are coded for success on each task within each experiment.

Conferences Typically Attended

Association for Psychological Sciences (APS) Society of Research in Child Development (SRCD) Cognitive Development Society (CDS) Western Psychological Association (WPA)

Shu-Sha Angie Guan

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

Mentor Bio

Dr. Guan earned her BA in Psychology at UC Berkeley and her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at UCLA. She studies the psychology & physiology of social bonding across contexts (e.g., cultural contexts, technology/digital media contexts), particularly among ethnic minority and immigrant adolescents and young adults. Please check out my lab website for more info on projects & people: http://angiesguan.wixsite.com/guancultrelab.

Title of Research Project

Social Experiences and Relationships on Cross-Cultural Health (SEARCH)

Purpose and Background

Social relationships have a powerful effect on well-being, such that supportive experiences can get “under the skin” to affect physical health outcomes (Guan, Bower, Almeida, Cole, Dahl, Irwin, Seeman, & Fuligni, 2016). Positive social relationships may affect health by buffering against the negative effect of stress on physiological, stress-response systems (e.g., neuroendocrine, cardiovascular, immune). However, individuals from different cultural backgrounds may have different support needs and norms (Guan & Fuligni, 2015).

Research Questions or Hypothesis

The study examines how receiving and providing social support affects stress reduction among young adults from diverse backgrounds within an experimental paradigm.

Method

We use primary quantitative methods. Within the experimental design, we collect survey, behavioral, and physiological data.

Student Roles

Students have opportunities to be involved in many various steps of the scientific method -- from reviewing literature, designing a study, analyzing data, writing up the results in an APA-formatted presentation or manuscript.

Expectations

My research assistants meet with me regularly. They learn to collect, analyze, and interpret empirical data. They practice the craft of research methods in developmental psychology.

Conferences Typically Attended

Western Psychological Association (WPA), American Psychological Association (APA)

Publications

Please check out my faculty page for more publications: https://www.csun.edu/health-human-development/child-adolescent-development/shu-sha-angie-guan-0.

Rika Meyer

Rika Meyer

Mentor Bio

Dr. Meyer received her BA in Psychology at UCLA and her MA and PhD in Developmental Psychology at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her research interests include health, chronic pain, trauma, and stress in children, adolescents, and their families. She explores ways to promote academic success and well-being from childhood to emerging adulthood.

Title of Research Project

Trauma and Mindfulness Study conducted by the Child and Adolescent Trauma, Chronic Pain, and Health (CATCH) Lab in collaboration with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA)

Background and Purpose

Children and adolescents who have been exposed to multiple Adverse Childhood Experiences (e.g., child abuse, domestic violence, alcoholic parents) are at risk for developing a number of negative outcomes such as suicidality (Dube, Anda, Felitti, Chapman, Williamson, & Giles, 2001), violent behavior (Duke, Pettingell, McMorris, & Borowsky, 2010), and other negative mental health outcomes (Chapman, Dube, & Anda, 2007). Mindfulness has been shown to be an effective intervention for adolescents who are under stress (Biegel, Brown, Shapiro, & Schubert, 2009; Brown, West, Loverich, & Biegel, 2011; Ciesla, Reilly, Dickson, Emanuel, & Updegraff, 2012; Edwards, Adams, Waldo, Hadfield, & Biegel, 2014; Sibinga, Kerrigan, Stewart, Johnson, Magyari, & Ellen, 2011; White, 2012). However, there is currently limited amount of studies that have rigorously examined the effectiveness of mindfulness interventions on children and adolescents with significant traumatic experiences, like child abuse. Therefore, the current study will examine the effectiveness of a mindfulness intervention with children and adolescents who have experienced trauma and a high number of ACEs.

Research Aims

The current study will employ a Randomized Control Trial comparing two treatment groups: 1) Treatment as Usual (TAU) and 2) Mindfulness Mobile Application + TAU. Standardized measures and qualitative open-ended questions will be collected weekly to determine the comparative effectiveness of the treatment groups.

Method

Quantitative (Surveys); SPSS

Student Roles

Students will complete a variety of research tasks to build their skills by: 1) Conducting literature reviews, 2) Leading data collection (e.g., conducting consent conferences, administering surveys), 3) Taking part in Data Entry, Cleaning and Analysis, 4) Developing individual and group research projects, and 5) Presenting data findings at conferences and assisting with write-ups of publications.

Expectations

Mentees in this lab should: 

  1. Have experience working with children and adolescents
  2. Have experience with data entry in SPSS
  3. Be passionate about learning research processes
  4. Work well in a group setting
  5. Be respectful, punctual, and accountable

 I strive for all my mentoring relationships to be a positive and productive learning experience. Therefore, we will check in weekly to make sure that tasks are being completed, but also to make sure that students are getting what they need out of the experience. I work to maintain a comfortable environment where mentees feel at home, foster new academic and professional connections, and build their skills in a supportive atmosphere.

Conferences Typically Attended

SRCD, SRA, ISTSS, WPA, APA

Publications

Selected Relevant Publications
Yang, E., Schamber, L., Meyer, R., Gold, J. I. (2018). Happier Healers: Randomized-controlled trial of mobile mindfulness for stress management in medical students. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine.
Morrison, C., Mahrer, N. E., Meyer, R. M. L., & Gold, J. I. (2017). Mindfulness for novice pediatric nurses: Smartphone application versus traditional intervention. Pediatric Nursing, 36, 205-212.
Meyer, R. M. L., Gauthier, T., Grefe, D., & Gold, J. I. (2015). An on-the-job mindfulness-based intervention for pediatric ICU nurses: A pilot. Journal of Pediatric Nursing. doi:10.1016/j.pedn.2014.10.005
Meyer, R. M. L., Gold, J. I., Beas, V. N., Young, C., & Kassam-Adams, N. (2014). Examining the Psychometric Properties of the Child PTSD Symptom Scale Spanish Version. Child Psychiatry and Human Development. doi: 10.1007/s10578-014-0482-2.

Key Words

Chronic pain, Trauma, Stress, PTSD, Children, Adolescents

Nancy Miodrag

 

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

Mentor Bio

Autism Spectrum Disorders and Intellectual Disabilities; Maternal Health and Wellbeing; Psychological Stress; Positive Psychology. Ph.D. 2010, McGill University M.A. 2004, Concordia University B.A. 1999, Brock University

Purpose and Background

To: (1) enhance the health and psychological well-being of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and their caregivers; and (2) evaluate the effectiveness of a 10-week mindfulness intervention for mothers of children with ASD using psychosocial measures and activity tracking devices (i.e., Fitbit).

Research Questions or Hypothesis

This is an applied research project working with families and children.

Method

We will explore both quantitative and qualitative data on psychological stress, coping, and various health outcomes in female caregivers of individuals with ASD.

Student Roles

BUILD PODER students will participate in all aspects of the research including weekly meetings with Dr. Miodrag and an interdisciplinary team of CSUN researchers, research design, assessments, data collection, data entry, analysis, and dissemination of findings.

Expectations

Students will gain valuable research skills including analytical thinking by analyzing data; critical thinking by reviewing and synthesizing literature; effective communication through public speaking in meetings, at conferences (i.e., local and national conferences in the social sciences), and with families; and team work by collaborating with other students and faculty on the project. Participation on this project can also help facilitate lifelong learning skills such as scholarly writing, work ethics, time management, and organization. 

Emily Russell

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

 In the language development lab, our research seeks to understand better the ways bilingual children build their vocabularies. We are currently comparing monolingual and bilingual children’s word-learning behavior and vocabulary content using experimental and survey-based studies. Students at every level are involved all aspects of the research process, including: study planning, participant recruitment, data collection and analysis (using Excel and SPSS), and sharing of findings with the wider scientific community at local and national conferences (e.g., Cognitive Development Society, Society for Research in Child Development). I encourage students to gain independence and increase their responsibilities as they advance in the lab.  Students who join our team have the opportunity to increase their knowledge of the research process, form instructor-to-peer and peer-to-peer mentorship relationships, and gain experience working with 15- to 30-month-old children and their families. Lab members will learn more about the development of children from a diverse array of language backgrounds; they may also gain insight into their own development.  We are particularly interested in English-Spanish bilingual students applying to join our lab—though all applicants will be considered. 

April Taylor

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

Mentor Bio

Ph.D. 2001, University of California Los Angeles. B.A. 1993, Pomona College

Purpose and Background

Motivational researchers have consistently documented that as students move into middle school many experience a decline in academic achievement and orientation towards school. This is particularly the case for ethnic-minorities who experience disproportionate declines in academic indicators compared to their non-ethnic minority counterparts.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Guided by the expectancy-value framework this work examines 1) perceptions of barriers and achievement values as mediators for the relationship between experiences with discrimination and academic outcomes, and 2) how this mediational model may be moderated by ethnicity.

Method

Analyses will include sociometric and nonparametric analyses, multilevel regressions, and multivariate analyses of variance.

Student Roles

Undergraduates will participate in recruitment, data collection, analysis, reporting, and presentation.

Communication Disorders & Sciences

Vickie Yu

*New Mentor*

Mentor Bio

Along with clinical experience as a speech-language pathologist, I am a well-trained speech scientist with extensive experience in behavioral studies. My primary research interest includes speech-language processing in bilinguals, second language acquisition, and acoustics of speech. I have great passion for research and am always excited about helping students come up interesting research topics. I have been working as a faculty member at California State University Northridge since 2015 teaching Phonetics and Speech Science at the undergraduate level and subjects on neurogenic communication disorders at the graduate level. 

Purpose and Background

Atypical speech sound production can impact speech intelligibility and pose a barrier to communication in participation across life domain with potentially negative effect on self-esteem, academic/occupational outcomes and life quality. My study is aimed to investigate the acoustic aspect of the speech features in second language (L2) learners of English to better understand how the different phonetic components between their native language and English affect their speech production in English. The ultimate goal of this study is to improve effective communication skills for L2 learners by providing insight into the speech diagnostics in bilingual individuals and resources for effective management on pronunciation enhancement in the clinic and ESL settings.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

1) What components affect speech intelligibility in speakers who learn English as a second language? 2) What is the relation between the English speech production and perception patterns in L2 learners of English?

Method

This study involves both auditory perception and speech production tasks. L2 adult learners complete both tasks. The analysis of this study involves acoustic analysis, speech intelligibility measures and a survey about language learning.

Student Roles

Students can be sophomore, junior and senior level Students involved in this study will engage in different types of research activities in line with the progress of the project. The students will learn how to 1) Conduct literature review (i.e., what to look for in a research article to help them understand and think beyond the article and summarize findings), 2) Understand the process of designing experimental tasks, 3) Conduct data collection (e.g., how to recruit participants, obtaining consent, executing research protocols), 3) Perform data analysis (e.g., transfer/backup data, code, and analyze data), and 4) Present/Report the results (e.g., learn how to make interpretations based on the results and to relate the current findings to evidence in the literature, how to write a summary of the findings and how to make a scientific research presentation).

Expectations

Prior knowledge of phonetics is recommended, though all applicants will be considered. The students in this study will receive an intensive training on acoustic analysis for speech sounds. Students will be encouraged to create their own research projects, collect data and present their studies as a poster at the conference.

Conferences Typically Attended

American Speech-Language, and Hearing Association (ASHA), The Acoustical Society of America (ASA).

Publications

Visit my research page for more.

Yu VY, De Nil LF & Pang EW. (2015). Effects of age, sex and syllable structure on voice onset time: Evidence from children’s voiceless aspirated stops. Language and Speech, 58, 152-167.

Yu VY, Pang EW, McDonald M & De Nil L. (2014). Age-related sex differences in language lateralization: a magnetoencephalography (MEG) study in children. Developmental Psychology, 50, 2276-2284.

Yu VY, Kadis DS, Oh, A, Goshulak D, Namasivayam A, Pukonen M, Kroll R, De Nil LF & Pang EW. (2014). Changes in voice onset time and motor speech skills in children after motor speech therapy. Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics, 26, 396-412. 

Environmental & Occupational Health

Nola Kennedy

Nola Kennedy, Associate Professor

NOT ACCEPTING NEW MENTEES*

Mentor Bio

Dr. Kennedy is a graduate of UC Berkeley and UCLA. She is currently the EOH Internship Coordinator. She is interested in occupational health and most of her research has focused on the quantification of exposures. She has worked on grants from NIOSH and NIH and currently has a grant from NIEHS to train undergraduates seeking a career in research. She is a board member of the Southern California section of the American Industrial Hygiene Association and of the California Industrial Hygiene Council. Ph.D. 2000, University of California Los Angeles M.S. 1997, University of California Los Angeles B.A. 1984, University of California Berkeley.

Purpose and Background

The objective of this project is to evaluate environmental exposure to noise experienced by dance students. Current understanding of non-occupational exposures to noise is limited because these exposures are often accepted as part of the recreational experience.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

The investigation seeks to measure (1) noise exposure levels and (2) exposure durations. The research will investigate control technologies for reducing noise exposures in the dance studio environment. 

Method

Health outcomes, related to noise exposure, will be evaluated using a questionnaire.  Students will work with the collection and analysis of noise exposure data, including dosimetry and octave band source characterization. These data will be analyzed using statistical analyses for correlation, variance and significance. 

Student Roles

Students will be responsible for survey scheduling, data collection, interaction with test subjects, data analysis and presentation.

Expectations

Students will gain a broad set of research-related skills, including survey management, environmental mentoring, equipment calibration, data analysis and public communication of findings.

Family and Consumer Sciences

Annette Besnillian

Mentor Bio

Annette Besnilian’s dedicated academic leadership focuses on serving and educating the next generation of dietitians, public health nutritionists, and food scientists. Today, she serves as the Executive Director of the Marilyn Magaram Center for Food Science, Nutrition, and Dietetics (MMC) and works tirelessly to provide robust educational and professional opportunities for students, who like her, have the passion to advance the understanding of nutrition, dietetics, and food in diverse communities. In addition, at CSUN she is the Dietetic Internship Program Director; and faculty teaching Nutrition and Dietetic Classes to graduate students in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), and a Certified Lactation Educator (CLE). She also serves as a NIH BUILD PODER Mentor for CSUN. For more than seventeen years she has obtained research and program development grants that have resulted in more than $3,000,000 in funds. She has been a DI Director for over 16 years and has trained and graduated approximately 160 dietetic interns and Registered Dietitians/Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDs/RDNs) in both Community and Nutrition Therapy Concentrations.

Purpose and Background

The research project goals are to implement, evaluate and conduct follow up to determine the effectiveness of school-based and community childhood obesity and diabetes (chronic disease) prevention programs (e.g., parent/family nutrition and activity workshops, cooking demonstrations, gardening programs, educational theater) designed to affect healthful behavior in parent participants and their families in schools with a high percentage of Latino families in LAUSD and the low income families in LA County. The programs focus on increasing awareness and providing guidelines on healthy nutrition choices, food-label reading, recipe modification, smart shopping, and related nutritional and healthy lifestyle information.  Other research projects include body composition testing and education for athletes, and testing of antioxidant levels, sensory analysis, microbial content and growth in hydroponics, aquaponics, and conventionally grown plants.  Additionally, a peer mentorship program has been developed to ensure student success and increase diversity in the field of dietetics. 

Method

Baseline, Six-month and one-year follow-ups will determine long-term effects of school-based and community obesity and diabetes (chronic disease) prevention programs.  Research variables are: participants’ knowledge regarding nutrition, cooking, physical activity, gardening, sodium  (pretest, posttest, follow up); cooking, eating, gardening, physical activity behaviors at pretest, posttest and follow up; changes in body mass index (BMI) and percent body fat, three-six months and one-year follow-ups. Focus groups and one on one interviews with participants to determine changes they have made to their eating, cooking, gardening and physical activity. 

Student Roles

Students will assist with data collection, taking field notes, taking height, weight and calculating BMI.   Students will learn to administer surveys, analysis and interpretation; organization skills, professional development, curriculum development, use SPSS, Compusense, Genesis and Esha Computer software.  They will also learn to conduct body composition testing using the BodPod in the Health assessment lab.  They will learn to conduct antioxidant level testing in the food chemistry labs and biology microbial testing in the microbiology labs.  They will learn to conduct focus groups and interviews, coding and determining themes. 

Nelida Duran

Student Roles

Nelida Duran, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences. She is a registered dietitian with extensive experience in maternal and child health, and HIV/AIDS care. Her research interests include arctic indigenous food systems, global environmental change and its impact on food and nutrition security, the role of nutrition in eliminating health disparities, and the translation of nutrigenetics, nutrigenomics, and epigenetics in clinical and public health nutrition. Education: Ph.D. 2015, University of California Los Angeles, M.S. 2000, California State University Los Angeles, B.S. 1998, California State University Los Angeles.

Background and Purpose

Genomic based health care provides an opportunity to address the health disparities experienced by Latinos but only when Latinos have an adequate understanding of and access to genomic-based health care, including behavioral interventions. The proposed project aims to leverage genomic information that is tailored and integrated into nutrition behavioral interventions utilizing the extended parallel process model to improve the health and nutritional well-being of Latinos living with pre-diabetes in the San Fernando Valley and reduce health disparities.

Research QuestionBackground and Purpose

Latinos diagnosed with pre-diabetes that receive genomic information that is tailored and integrated into a nutrition behavioral intervention are more likely to control hemoglobin A1C levels (below 7.0%) than individuals with pre-diabetes that do not receive genomic information.

Method

An experimental, non-randomized controlled trial, research design will be utilized to study the effectiveness of using genomic information that is tailored and integrated into a nutrition behavioral intervention that utilizes the extended parallel process model to improve the health and nutritional well-being of Latinos living with pre-diabetes in the San Fernando Valley.

Analysis

Regression Analysis

Students Roles

Sophomore level students can support the research staff in delivering the intervention (pre-workshop setup, distributing handouts, collecting data forms). Junior and Senior level students can contribute to the recruitment, adaptation, and tailoring of the lesson plans, lead a workshop (must be a Spanish speaker), assist in data collection and analyses, and help prepare abstracts and manuscripts for professional conference and publication, respectively.

Expectations

Students are expected to be self-starters and take initiative. Students should be willing to learn and enjoy the learning process. In addition, they are expected to apply for grants, not only for themselves but for future research projects.

Conferences Typically Attended

Conferences Typically Attended — American Public Health Association’s Annual Meeting and Expo; Congress of the International Society of Nutrigenetics/Nutrigenomics

Dena Herman-Mendes

Mentor Bio

Dr. Herman’s research has focused on improving dietary quality and food security among low-income, ethnically diverse populations. Her earlier projects focused on the assessment of dietary quality of mothers and families participating in the WIC program. Her site-randomized trial of an economic intervention to increase fruit and vegetable intake, demonstrated the efficacy of adding fruits and vegetables to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) food package became national policy and was initiated in California in October 2009. Her current research endeavors focus on childhood obesity prevention and its relationship to the microbiome. As a registered dietitian, she has worked with children with special needs, women getting ready to get pregnant (preconception care), and is now working with patients and their families in UCLA’s FIT for Healthy Weight Program. Ph.D. 2002, University of California Los Angeles M.P.H 1997, University of California Los Angeles B.S.c. 1993, Fredrich-Wilhelms University

Purpose and Background

The goals of the LA ROCCS evaluation project are to: 1) Reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity among children 3-5 years of age participating in an intervention to inform parents of children’s weight status using a parent BMI letter; and 2) To evaluate if a provider training on healthy lifestyle habits results in lower BMI values for children ages 3-5 years attending child care services in Los Angeles County.

Methods

The primary variables are: Body mass index (BMI) (kg/m2); knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs of child care providers regarding their personal healthy lifestyle habits including: healthy eating, exercise, and screen time; and demographic variables (e.g., age, race, education, and income).

Student Roles

Students will work with survey data including the variables listed above, and they will be responsible for measuring and weighing children, data entry, recruitment of childcare sites.

Expectations

Students will gain skills in anthropometry, experience in community-based participatory research, data management.

Elizabeth Sussman

Mentor Bio

My research focuses on nutritional deficiencies in kidney failure patients. I’ve looked at micronutrition deficiencies (including selenium and vitamin C) as well as malnutrition. As a Registered Dietitian, member of the medical advisory board for the National Kidney Foundation of AZ, a fellow and Board of Directors member for the CardioRenal Society of America, I continually work to improve the health of people with Chronic Kidney Disease. Ph.D. 2013, Arizona State University M.S. 2010, Teachers College, Columbia University B.S. 2006, California State University, Long Beach.

Research Project Title

Nutrition and Renal Disease

Background and Purpose

The purpose of my research is to improve the lives of people with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). I’m currently working on a few review papers to bring greater attention to improving the nutrient profile of CKD patients. These papers will focus on micronutrient deficiencies as well as the diet as a whole. I collaborate with well-known and well-respected Medical Doctors (MD) to further this agenda.

Student Roles

Students that work with Dr. Sussman will learn how to do literature reviews, read and understand research, improve their critical thinking skills, and work toward improving the nutrient profile of CKD patients, culminating with published papers.

Expectations

Students are expected to be self-starters and take initiative. Students should be willing to learn and enjoy the learning process. In addition, they are expected to apply for grants, not only for themselves but for future research projects.

Conferences Typically Attended

Dr. Sussman attends the International Society of Renal Nutrition and Metabolism’s Congress on Renal Nutrition every two years as well as the Southwest Nephrology Conference in Arizona every March.

Yoko Mimura

Mentor Bio

I grew up in Japan and received Ph.D. from the University of Georgia. Starting with master's thesis preparation, I have been involved in social science research for over 20 years. I joined CSUN in 2012. My research primarily focuses on intergenerational transmission of financial values and advantages.

entor Bio

Intergenerational Transmission of Values and Advantages 

Purpose and Background

The aim of our work is to better understand the conditions that promote bias, so that we can ultimately create interventions that might attenuate stereotyping and prejudice.

Research Questions or Hypotheses

What do people learn about certain values, such as money and health, from their parents when growing up?

Methods

Quantitative and Qualitative. Data collection - survey & interview. Data analysis - multivariate statistics, grounded theory

Student Roles

Student Roles: literature review, working with the data, among others

Expectations

I expect my students bring in new perspectives. Students can expect personal attention from me. The skills the students may gain will depend on what we both see as beneficial and interests to the students.

h2 style="font-size: 14px;">Conferences Typically Attended:

American Council on Consumer Interests 

h2 style="font-size: 14px;">Publications

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS ON HOUSEHOLD FINANCE

  • Mimura, Y., Yi, C., Tonyan, H., & Koonce, J. (Forthcoming). Resource well-being among family child care business owners. Journal of Family and Economic Issues. doi:10.1007/s10834-019-09620-8
  • Mimura, Y., Koonce, J., Plunkett, S. W., & Pleskus, L. (2015). Financial information source, knowledge, and practices of college students from diverse backgrounds. Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning, 26(1), 63-78. Available from: https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1074650.pdf
  • Mimura, Y. (2014). The relationship between life satisfaction among wives and financial preparedness of households in Japan. Journal of Family and Economic Issues, 35(4), 532-541. DOI: 10.1007/s10834-014-9390-7 Available from: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10834-014-9390-7
  • Mimura, Y. (2014). Family characteristics and educational expenditures in Japan and the United States. The Japanese Political Economy, 40(1), 1-23.DOI: 10.2753/JES2329-194X400101 Available from: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.2753/JES2329-194X400101?needAccess=true&journalCode=mjes20
  • Mimura, Y. (2013). Variations in retirement account holdings among women: Native and immigrants in the U.S. International Journal of Business and Finance Research, 7(5), 11-22. Available from: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2261980

Health Sciences

Kacie Blackman

Mentor Bio

Dr. Kacie Blackman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Health Equity Research and Education Center. She is an expert in health literacy, maternal and infant health, related health behaviors (e.g., infant feeding practices, physical activity, eating/drinking), health policy, built environment (e.g., stores), and food marketing/advertising. Lastly, she has experience in developing and testing culturally responsive technology interventions with underserved populations.

Title of Research Project

Black Birth Equity Workers: Glowing Through Covid-19

Title of Lab

Health Opportunities M-health Mamas Equity

Background and Purpose

In the US, burnout among birth equity workers (e.g., peer counselors, childbirth doulas, pregnancy program facilitators is high. This burnout may be exacerbated for birth equity workers that work with black mothers and infants who experience disproportionately higher morbidity and mortality compared to their counterparts. Specifically, structural and interpersonal racism and discrimination underlie much of the physical and mental health risk for black, pregnant persons and their newborns. Though research shows that positive birthing outcomes are associated with doula-assisted births, birth equity workers such as doulas (non-clinical paraprofessionals that provide informational, emotional, and physical support for pregnant and postpartum families) during the COVID-19 pandemic are not considered essential workers and are not under the same protections as those implemented for hospital staff; yet continue to service their pregnant and postpartum clients. The purpose of the current study is to determine the effects of physiological stress (salivary cortisol, salivary alpha-amylase (sAA), salivary uric acid (sUA)) on risk of burnout and wellbeing among doulas.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Doulas who 1) are black and 2) have primarily black clients will have higher salivary cortisol, sAA, and sUA compared to their counterparts. There will be an interaction between the doula race and client race.

Method

Data are collected via self-reported surveys, anthropometrics (e.g., blood pressure), physiological measures from biospecimens (e.g., saliva), and open-ended questions.

Analytic Process

The analytic process includes identifying that using a breast pump to express breast milk is difficult for mothers to reach the health recommendations, developing a personalized photo memory reflection AR app as a motivation tool and testing the feasibility of this app during breast pumping sessions. Lastly, examining the amounts of salivary analytes in before and after each breast pumping session.

Student Roles

Assisting in the field work (working with participantsvirtually), conducting literature reviews, data management and cleaning, developing research protocols, designing secondary research questions, analyzing data, and drafting results for conferences (local, state, national). Mentees will have opportunities to virtually attend local maternal and infant health meetings with Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Department of Mental Health, community-based organizations, and medical and mental health professionals.

Expectations

Mentees will be expected to be committed, problem-solvers, think outside of the box, and passionate about health equity. They will be able to identify how research skills are transferable in different career paths and how they can make the research relatable. As a mentor, I will provide environmental, current, and historical context to the research and an opportunity to excel in the research field for emerging investigators.

Conferences Typically Attended

American Public Health Association, California Breastfeeding Coalition, United States Breastfeeding Committee

Publications

Please visit: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/myncbi/browse/collection/46088241/?sort=date&direction=descending

Stephan (Kyusuk) Chung

Mentor Bio

Dr. Chung’s research focuses on issues related to health disparities, such as end-of-life care in medically underserved communities. He has produced a video featuring a Mexican-American patient at the end stage of Alzheimer’s, along with her primary caregiver, husband, and hospice interdisciplinary team. Appointed as a 2018 CSUN Research Fellow, he has been able to devote his time to disseminating the video to clinics and hospitals in predominantly Latino communities in Southern California to support timely referrals to hospice (the video can be found here: http://csunshinetoday.csun.edu/media-releases/csun-spanish-language-video-explores-end-of-life-care-options/). He was selected as a health disparities scholar at NIH in 2013. He served as a consultant for the Illinois Department of Public Health from 2002 to 2009, helping to amend Certificate of Need program regulating new healthcare services and facility construction, generating $1 million in research grants. He has published more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles and given more than 60 presentations. One of his recent papers was cited in a Washington Post article (“Terminal neglect? How some hospices decline to treat the dying” May 3, 2014). He is working on three projects: 1) looking at state policies on hospice providers; 2) analyzing the cancer (SEER)-Medicare joint dataset to investigate the reasons underlying live hospice discharge; and 3) promoting the awareness of hospice care among the Hispanic population. Ph.D. 1999, University of Illinois at Chicago M.S. 1991, Wayne State University B.S. 1986, Chonnam National University

Background and Purpose

Racial difference in healthcare use pattern is well documented: Minorities are less likely than their white counterparts to use preventive and primary care and more likely to use aggressive inpatient care at the end of life. My recent research has been focused on barriers for Latinos to the use of end of life care options including hospice care. In particular, I look for explanations for low hospice use among beneficiaries of In-Home Support Service (IHSS) program. IHSS is the largest long-term care program with nearly 50,000 low-income individuals with disabilities and another 50,000 caregivers. Half of the caregivers are beneficiaries’ own family members who are paid for their care services.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Latino IHSS beneficiaries who died without hospice did so 1) because they were mistaken that they would lose IHSS benefit if they enrolled in hospice; 2) because they were not aware of hospice availability; 3) because they were concerned about hospice cost.

Method

Focus group meetings and telephone/in-person interview targeting (1) IHSS caregivers; (2) hospice workers; (3) hospital discharge planners. Data will be analyzed through qualitative analysis of interviews using Nvivo

Student Roles

Conduct Literature review. Develop a survey questionnaire, Conduct a focus group meeting/phone/in-person interview. Analyze qualitative data collected and identify themes. Write a method/result section for a journal manuscript. Write an abstract to submit for a conference.  

Expectations

Students will have: (1) opportunity to present/publish research findings at national level conference/journals; (2) a promising career in long-term care research and policy as the old population rapidly increases over the next two decades; (3) an experience with various research methods—for example, students from the CTVA and Journalism departments recently collaborated with me to produce a video featuring a Mexican-American patient at the end stage of Alzheimer’s, along with her primary caregiver, husband, and hospice interdisciplinary team.

Conferences Typically Attended

American Public Health Association and Academy Health

Publications

I have published more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles and given more than 60 presentations at professional health services research conferences. 

Bobbie Emetu

Mentor Bio

Dr. Bobbie Emetu's research focus is in sexual transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV/AIDS risk behaviors. Her research interests include condom use errors, innovative methods for STI testing, HIV-related stigma, and the association between sexual abuse and sexual risk behaviors. She continues to conduct applied research within the areas of health education, disease prevention, and sexual health. Ph.D. 2014, Indiana University M.P.H 2014, Indiana University M.L.S 2009, University of Wisconsin B.S. 2007, Middle Tennessee State University.

Background and Purpose

Research conducted on male sexual minorities are limited to disease or sexual behavior, even though the definition of sexual health incorporates other dimensions. The aim of this study was to examine the physical, emotional, and mental sexual health components of young men who have sex with men (YMSM) with a previous history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA). The data was collected in the Midwest. Participants had to be a male, ages of 18-29, with a history of CSA, and currently engaging in same-sex behaviors.

Research Question(s) or Hypothesis1. What is the meaning of other sexual health components such as physical, emotional, and mental sexual health to YMSM who have experienced CSA? 2. What are the perceived risk factors related to the physical, emotional, and mental components of sexual health among YMSM with CSA histories?

Method

Phenomenology is both a conceptual framework and a methodology (Marton, 1986; Moustakas, 1994). Semi-structured interviews are the primary method of data collection for phenomenological studies (Creswell, 2012; Merriam, 2002). The interview guide consisted of questions that covered the comprehensive components of sexual health. During the interview, notes were taken and an audio recorder was utilized to assure accuracy of interview responses. The face-to-face interviews lasted approximately an hour. Sixteen (N=16) interviews were conducted. The data collection and transcription are completed for this study. The data will be analyzed and prepared for two journal submissions through the context of the physical, emotional, and mental components of sexual health. A semiotic phenomenological procedure will be used for analyzing the data. The semiotic procedure is the methodological schema of description-reduction-interpretation (Merriam, 2002). As part of thematic and content analysis to develop independent themes, preliminarily themes will be further analyzed by the utilization of NVivo (qualitative data analysis software). The first manuscript will focus on the physical components of sexual health, and the second manuscript will highlight the emotional and mental components of sexual health among the participants of this study.

Student Roles

The assistance of one student is needed for this project. Regardless of college level, the selected student will be trained by the researcher on qualitative methods and analysis, including NVivo (qualitative data analysis software). Then, the selected student along with the researcher will analyze the data separately, and afterwards will compare results. The researcher and student will reanalysis the data using NVivo. After the thematic analysis, the student will assist with the manuscript development.

Expectations — This project will provide an opportunity for a student to become familiar with qualitative methods and manuscript development. Also, the student could potentially be included in a publication and an opportunity to attend and present at a conference

Conferences Typically Attended

American Public Health Association; American Association of Behavioral and Social Sciences; Ethnographic and Qualitative Research; Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality; Society of Public Health Education

Claudia Toledo-Corral

Claudia Toledo-Corral headshot

Mentor Bio

Claudia Toledo-Corral is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences at CSUN and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Southern California (USC). Dr. Toledo-Corral has a background in biological sciences, health psychology, and anthropology/cultural studies, and obtained her M.P.H. and Ph.D. in Preventive Medicine from USC. She has a long-standing research agenda in the field of obesity and associated disease risk in minority populations. Dr. Toledo-Corral’s past work includes the study of the biological underpinnings of pediatric obesity and diabetes risk, assessing the efficacy of clinical diagnostic methods of diabetes, and examining the physiological role of stress on obesity and cardiometabolic risk.

Title of Research Project

Metabolism and Stress Assessment (MeSA) pilot study

Background and Purpose

Background & Purpose – Everyday life stressors and community level burdens have been shown to alter brain biology. Psychoendocrinology literature shows compelling evidence that stress-induced changes to the body may contribute to obesity and metabolic diseases. Specifically, psychosocial and environmental stressors can disrupt hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity, which in turn will alter cortisol levels throughout the day. Disrupted cortisol patterns have been shown to be associated with increased risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes. Work in this area of research has implications for public health and health care practitioners by raising awareness of health risks associated with stress and the need for stress-reduction programs and interventions.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

The overarching research aim of the MeSA pilot study to understand the complex relationship between various stressors, HPA-axis activity, and body fat. In this effort, we will characterize perceived, community, and biological stress and assess their relationships with body fat measures.

Method

Since our lab is grounded in clinical epidemiological design, we only use quantitative methods. Our data are collected via self-reported surveys, health behavior assessments, and physiological measures from biospecimens.

Student Roles

Depending on the stage of the research project, students may participate in a variety of tasks including: assisting in the field research (working directly with the participants), conducting literature reviews, data management, and cleaning, designing secondary research questions, analyzing data and writing up results for local and possibly national level conferences. During the period of the Covid-19 pandemic, student roles will be limited to remote work only. This includes mostly statistical analyses, extensive literature reviews, and writing up data reports.

Expectations

Enthusiasm, commitment, and an open mind are three key expectations of potential mentees. As a mentor, I strive to provide context to the research environment and opportunity to excel in the research field for young investigators.

Conferences Typically Attended

American Public Health Association (APHA), American Psychosomatic Society (APS), American Diabetes Association (ADA), The Obesity Society (TOS)

Publications

For full-list of publications, please visit her Publons profile.

Kathleen Young

The main goals of this research are to provide comprehensive breast health services (prevention education and health screening programs) for low income and uninsured women (marginalized populations) throughout the LA-Region and to also advocate for marginalized populations  at the local, state, and federal level(s).   I take students to Sacramento and Washington D.C. yearly to receive training in order to advocate for the key public health bills that effect the nation as a whole (e.g. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act:  P.L. 111-148; REACH U.S. Racial & Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (provide funding for line item via CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion).  Our goal in this is two-fold (1) provide public health education students with formal health advocacy training and (2) advocate for health equity policies, programs and best practices that address the nation’s health across all populations.  Students will work closely with me and other members of various research teams utilizing the Community Based Participatory Research Model (Minkler & Wallerstein, 2012).  This may include (but not be limited to) community needs assessment(s), program implementation, evaluation, data analyses, and dissemination of findings.  Students will gain exposure and hands-on work in research and program development, implementation, and outcome assessment(s).  Students are also required to create dissemination materials, assist in publication and conference abstracts.

Stephanie Benjamin

Mentor Bio

Stephanie Benjamin, Ph.D., M.P.H. is an Associate Professor in the Health Sciences Department at California State University, Northridge. She earned her Ph.D. and M.P.H. in epidemiology from Tulane University and her B.A. in biological basis of behavior from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to this position, Dr. Benjamin worked as an epidemiologist in the Division of Diabetes Translation at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Benjamin’s research interests include diabetes, obesity and college health.

Title of Research Project

Behaviors that Influence the Health of College Students

Purpose & Background

College is a critical period of transition when students must balance the demands of obtaining a college degree while adapting to their increasing autonomy and responsibility. Research suggests that college students are an especially vulnerable subset of the population for risky behaviors, such as substance use and misuse. These types of behaviors can threaten students' ability to successfully navigate challenges faced in college and can have lasting implications for future employment and health.

Research Question

Do CSUN students have a high prevalence of risky behaviors (such as substance abuse)?

Method

Data from the American College Health Association - National College Health Assessment (a nationally recognized research survey that is conducted at CSUN periodically and provides precise data about students’ health habits, behaviors, and perceptions) will be analyzed.

Student Roles

Literature review and analysis of data using SPSS software

Expectations

Students will gain experience in conducting a literature review and analyzing data. Prior experience with SPSS software is necessary.

Conferences Typically Attended

American Public Health Association Conference

Publications

Forster, Myriam & Grigsby, Timothy & Rogers, Christopher & M. Benjamin, Stephanie. (2017). The relationship between family-based adverse childhood experiences and substance use behaviors among a diverse sample of college students. Addictive Behaviors. 76. 10.1016/j.addbeh.2017.08.037.

Patty Kwan

Mentor Bio

Dr. Patty Kwan teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses in the Public Health program. She has extensive research experience in health disparities, particularly in chronic diseases and health behaviors that disproportionately affect minority populations such as Asian Americans (AA) and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders (NHPIs). Dr. Kwan's current research projects include a qualitative study looking at the impacts of COVID-19 among Pacific Islanders and a quantitative study assessing current health and mental health status of Southeast Asian young adults.

Kinesiology

Sean Flanagan

Mentor Bio

Sean P. Flanagan received a B.S. degree in Exercise Science (emphasis in Athletic Training) from Penn State University, an M.S. in Exercise and Sport Science (emphasis in Exercise Physiology) from the University of Dayton, and a Ph.D. in Biokinesiology (emphasis in Biomechanics) from the University of Southern California. He is certified as an Athletic Trainer (NATA), Strength and Conditioning Specialist (NSCA), and Exercise Physiologist (American College of Sports Medicine). Ph.D. 2004, University of Southern California M.S. 2000, University of Dayton B.S. 1990, Pennsylvania State University

Background and Purpose

The main purpose of my research is to understand how the various joints of the body work together as an integrated chain. I am particularly interested in how these joints must work together to maintain a healthy and robust locomotor system, and how impairment at one joint may lead to compensatory motion and/or injury at another.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Which joint motions and torques are necessary for a given task? How do the joints involved in the movement compensate for one another? What are the implications of these compensations?

Method

1) simple models of kinematic chains; 2) experiments; and 3) complex musculoskeletal models. I use simple models to uncover fundamental principles of multi-joint movement, which are then tested via experiments with human subjects. Some of the experiments involve quantifying coordination and compensation amongst different joints during fundamental movement patterns, while others involve creating an artificial impairment (such as a decrease in strength, range of motion, etc.) and examining the consequences of that impairment. Experiments make use motion capture and force platforms to conduct 3-D analysis of a movement. Since there is a limitation to the extent in which you can create an artificial impairment on people, the next step is to use complex musculoskeletal models to examine the role of an impairment and/or compensatory motion in producing injury. Students work with several types of data, including: motion capture, inverse dynamics, computer simulation, electromyography, and strength and range of motion assessments.

Student Roles

Students are gradually responsible for data collection and computer modeling techniques (sophomore/junior/senior), hypothesis generation and testing (junior/senior), experimental design (junior/senior), and teaching less experienced students (junior/senior). Additionally, seniors have the opportunity to conduct an independent investigation of their own design. Students gain skills that are applicable to research in such diverse fields as biomechanics, motor control, orthopedics, and biomedical engineering.

Expectations

I like to tailor lab experiences to individual student interests, and hope that by doing so we can learn together and from each other in a dynamic and fun environment.

Conferences Typically Attended

Typical conferences I attend include: American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), American Society of Biomechanics (ASB), National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA), and National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).

Danielle Jarvis

Danielle Jarvis

Mentor Bio

Dr. Jarvis is the director of LEAAP, the Laboratory for Evaluating Athletic & Aesthetic Performance. She teaches courses in biomechanics, dance, research methods, and athletic training. Her research interests are in movement coordination during skilled activities. She also regularly choreographs and performs with the Los Angeles-based dance company LA Unbound, and she is an avid football and hockey fan.

Background and Purpose

My work investigates the strategies underlying complex movement patterns and compensations in movement patterns that may contribute to or result from injuries.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Some projects I am currently working on include: (1) Determining the effects of different footwear on jumping performance in dancers, as measured by lower extremity joint motion (kinematics) and joint forces (kinetics) (2) Examining the differences in movement and coordination patterns during gross motor skills performed by college students with and without Autism Spectrum Disorders (3) Comparing measurement of joint motion using traditional 3D motion capture and portable inertial sensors (4) Comparing the differences in lower extremity dynamics during walking, running, and jumping when using different methods of marking and tracking the foot.

Method

My research uses a computer-aided video motion analysis system and force plates to collect data regarding kinematics and kinetics. Markers are placed on subjects and video data is collected as movements are performed. Software is then used to process the data and draw conclusions about motion and forces, particularly at lower extremity joints such as the hip, knee, ankle, and toes. I am also implementing a portable inertial sensor-based system to collect similar data outside of a laboratory setting, in a gymnasium, dance studio, or outdoors.

Student Roles

Students will learn how to collect biomechanical data, process the data using specialized software programs, and analyze and interpret the results. Software programs used include Cortex (Motion Analysis), Visual3D (CMotion), MATLAB (Mathworks), and SPSS.

Expectations

Students will be exposed to the entire research process, including the presentation of the results in the forms of posters, presentations, and publications. Seniors will also have the opportunity to develop and investigate their own biomechanical research question. I work closely with mentees early on and am looking for students who are interested in taking on more independent projects as they gain the skills to investigate questions. I enjoy spending time in the lab with students and try to create an open, welcoming space for all!

Conferences Typically Attended – Conferences I typically attend include American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), International Association for Dance Medicine & Science (IADMS), and American Society of Biomechanics (ASB).

Publications

Jarvis, D.N., & Abergel, R.E. (2019). What do we know about how acute physical fatigue affects movement in dancers? A systematic review of the literature. Medical Problems of Performing Artists. 34(3), 161-168.

Mikkelsen, P., Jarvis, D.N., & Kulig K. (2018). Heeled shoes increase knee work demand during repeated hopping in dancers. Medical Problems of Performing Artists. 33(4), 243-250.

Key Words

jumping, athletes, dance, injuries, fatigue, ASD, biomechanics

Taeyou Jung

Mentor Bio

Dr. Taeyou Jung is the Executive Director of the Center of Achievement, which provides internationally recognized clinical exercise programs. He is a professor in the Department of Kinesiology and an adjunct professor in Assistive Technology Engineering Program. He earned his doctoral degree in Kinesiology with emphases on Sports Medicine and Adapted Physical Activity at the University of Virginia. Prior to joining CSUN in 2003, he had worked at the Gait and Motor Performance Laboratory in the Kluge Children’s Rehabilitation Center and the McCue Sports Medicine Center in Virginia.

Dr. Jung enjoys mentoring aspiring future researchers in Kinesiology, Neuroscience, Rehabilitation Science, and Biomedical Science & Engineering. An active group of graduate researchers and interns participate in various projects at the Adapted Motor Performance Laboratory. Many of his former mentees have successfully advanced to and completed a doctoral training. They are currently working as academic faculty or a research scientist in various institutions, such as NIH, NYU, University of Delaware, University of Alabama Birmingham, and CSUF. 

His research interests focus on investigating movements of people with disabilities and clinical outcomes following therapeutic interventions. Some of recently published works include a) 3D gait analysis of children with cerebral palsy on treadmill, b) underwater 3D gait analysis in people with traumatic brain injury, c) cardiorespitory responses to aquatic walking in people post-stroke and d) post-exercise hypotensive response following aquatic exercise in people post-stroke.

Background and Purpose

Current research projects include:

1) Study of brain activity corresponding to exercise via functional neuro-imaging tool (fNIRs):    a) To analysis cortical hemodynamics during forced cycling in people with Parkinson's disease (PD)
  b) To compare prefrontal lobe activity of people post-stroke when using chopsticks vs. fork
  c) To examine motor cortex activity during backward walking in people-post stroke
2) Clinical investigation of using Virtual Reality (VR) applications in rehabilitation:
  a) To study the effect of VR on pain and fatigue during exercise in people with spinal cord injury
  b) To examine the use of VR game for improving reaction time of people with PD
3) Evaluation of gait and balance outcomes following various locomotive training modes:  
  a) To investigate the effect of backward walking on gait and balance in people post-stroke
  b) To compare energy expenditure among various locomotive training modes in people with PD
  c) To examine gait and balance outcomes following elliptical training in people with PD

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Each research group is to address: 1) How does the brain response to various modes of exercise?; b) Can the use of VR be effective for rehabilitation?; and c) Which locomotive training would be most effective for improving motor and fitness outcomes?

Method

Various biomedical research instrumentations are used, including neuroimaging device for brain study, 3D motion analysis system for gait study, posturographic system for balance evaluation, and telemetric metabolic system for energy expenditure study, and VR equipped workstation.

Student Roles

Students will learn to use research instruments and participate in projects of their interest while assisting literature review, data collection & analysis, and manuscript preparation.

Expectations

Students will develop clinical research skills from data collection to data analysis. They will learn how to utilize biomedical research instruments for clinical trials. They are expected to deliver professional presentations in collaboration with graduate researchers and faculty mentors.

Conference typically attend with students

ACSM: American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting, ISAPA: International Symposium on Adapted Physical Activity, NAFAPA: North American Federation of Adapted Physical Activity Conference, GCMAS: Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society Annual Meeting, NASPSPA: North American Society of Psychology of Sports and Physical Activity.

Keywords

Adapted Physical Activity, Sports Medicine, Rehabilitation Science, Neuromotor control, clinical biomechanics, Neurocognitive research, Motion analysis

Recent publications with students:

(selected from last 5 years & *  CSUN student)

  • Wagatsuma, M.* Kim, T.*, Sitagata, P.*, Lee, E.*, Vrongistinos, K. and Jung, T. (2019) “Biomechanical investigation of the relationship between balance and muscular strength in people with chronic stroke” Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation Feb. 11:1-7. doi: 10.1080/10749357.2019.1574417
  • Jung T., Kim Y.*, Lim H.*, and Vrongistinos K. (2018) “The influence of water depth on kinematic and spatiotemporal gait parameters during aquatic treadmill walking.” Sports Biomechanics Jan 16:1-11 DOI: 10.1080/14763141.2017.1409255 
  • Lim H.*, Jeng B.*, Azurdia D.*, and Jung T. (2018)  "Influence of water depth on energy expenditure during aquatic walking in people post-stroke" Physiotherapy Research International Jan. 23.  DOI: 10.1002/pri.1708 
  • Jeng B.*, Fujii T.*, Lim H.*, Vrongistinos K.and Jung T. (2017) “Cardiorespiratory responses to pool floor walking in people post-stroke.” Achieves of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 99 (3) 542-547  DOI: 10.1016/j.apmr.2017.09.112 
  • Kim, Y.*, Todd, T., Fujii, T.*, Lim, J.*, Vrongistinos, K. & Jung, T. (2016) “Effects of Taekowndo intervention on balance in children with autism spectrum disorder.”  Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation 12 (4): 314-319,  
  • Jung, T., Kim, Y.*, Kelly, L., & Abel, M. (2016) “Biomechanical and perceived differences between overground and treadmill walking in children with cerebral palsy.” Gait and Posture, V. 45 p. 1-6  
  • Lai, B., Jeng, B., Vrongistinos, K., & Jung, T. (2015) “Post-Exercise Hypotensive Responses Following an Acute Bout of Aquatic and Overground Treadmill Walking in People Post-Stroke: A Pilot Study.” Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation, DOI: 10.1179/1074935714Z.0000000016
  • Smith, K., Lange, A., Narasaki-Jara, M., Todd, T., Vrongistinos, K. & Jung, T.  (2015)  “Effects of Aquatic Exercise on Balance of People with Multiple Sclerosis.” Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 48(1):381 DOI: 10.1249/01.mss.0000486151.32566.85
  • Hurtado I.*, Lopez M.* Knudtson A.*, Jara M., Vrongistinos K., and Jung T. (2015) “Effects of Treadmill Walking with Visual Feedback on Gait Outcomes in People Post-Stroke” Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 47:465 DOI: 10.1249/01.mss.0000477710.69548.df
  • Lim J.*, Guzman U.*, Mache M., Todd T., and Jung T. (2015) “Postural Control Outcomes following Videogame-based Intervention in Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder” Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 47:67 DOI: 10.1249/01.mss.0000476583.51607.75
  • Nishiyori, R., Lai, B., Lee, D., Vrongistinos, K., & Jung, T. (2014). “The Use of Cuff Weights for Aquatic Gait Training in People Post-Stroke with Hemiparesis.” Physiotherapy Research International. DOI: 10.1002/pri.1617 

Teri Todd

Mentor Bio

Dr. Teri Todd is an Associate Professor of Kinesiology and the Clinical Director of the Center of Achievement through Adapted Physical Activity which provides internationally recognized clinical exercise programs for individuals with disabilities. Dr. Todd teaches classes in the area of Adapted Physical Activity and Motor Development, including courses with a focus on children with disabilities. Dr. Todd earned her degree in Educational Psychology with an emphasis on Adapted Physical Activity at McGill University in Montreal, QC, Canada. She earned her Masters degree in Adapted Physical Activity at McGill University and BSc in Exercise Science at Concordia University in Montreal, QC, Canada.
Dr. Todd enjoys teaching and research-related activities. She has a passion for promoting the field of adapted physical activity believing that everyone benefits from being active! Her specialty is with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). As a parent, practitioner, and researcher of individuals with ASD she has devoted the past 30 years to this area. Dr. Todd enjoys sharing her passion with students and mentoring students as practitioners and researchers with a hands-on approach. Presently Dr. Todd oversees several physical activity programs for children and young adults with ASD at CSUN. In addition to her interest in ASD Dr. Todd oversees the Valley GO! program at CSUN. Valley GO! provides adaptive sports for individuals with spinal cord injury and veterans with disabilities. Valley GO! offers monthly multi-sport clinics including hand-cycling, adapted canoeing, adapted kayaking, adapted waterski and wakeboarding, and once a year a High Ropes Challenge Course. This project is in its 3rd year and serves many individuals within our community.

Background and Purpose

I came to CSUN in 2012 and continued a line research focusing on physical activity and ASD. I have successfully mentored over 25 graduate students and several Build Poder students. Recent graduates have entered PhD programs in related areas of study, been accepted to DPT programs, been hired by gait labs, cardiovascular exercise labs for those recovering from cardiovascular surgery, Occupational Therapy programs, and Physical Education credential programs with the Adapted Physical Education added authorization. Recent graduate students have won inhouse and state-wide research awards. Recent and on-going areas of research include:
a) Surfing, self-determination, quality of life and young adults with ASD
b) The effect of a peer-mentored physical activity program on fitness and physical activity levels of college students with ASD
c) Biomechanical analysis of fundamental motor skills of college students with and without ASD, including differences in balance and the resulting effect on motor skill
d) The effect of cardiorespiratory exercise on visuospatial abilities of college students with and without ASD
e) The effect of IFiT-M (fitness and mindfulness program) on fitness and anxiety for college students with ASD.
Research tools include field testing (fitness), questionnaires, VICOM, Neurocom Balance master, accelerometers.

Research Questions or Hypothesis

Some projects I am currently working on include: (1) IFiT-M a peer mentor physical activity and mindfulness program for college students with autism; (2) motor skill development of individuals on the autism spectrum disorder; (3) kinematic analysis of motor skills of young adults on the autism spectrum.

Student Roles and Expectations

I encourage student mentees to be active in all aspects of research: planning, ethics training, data collection, data entry, analysis, and synthesis. Students are expected to present at International or National conferences including the International Symposium for Autism Research (INSAR) annual conference, North American Society for Psychology of Sports and Physical Activity (NASPSPA), North American Federation of Adapted Physical Activity (NAFAPA) biennial, and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) annual meeting.

Recent Publications

Todd, T., Miodrag, N., & Bougher, S. (2019). A peer mentored physical activity interventions: An emerging practice for autistic college students. Autism in Adulthood, 1(3).

Li, Y., Mache, M., Todd, T. (2019). Complexity of center of pressure in postural control with autism spectrum disorders was partially compromised. Journal of Applied Biomechanics.

Todd, T, & Mache, M. Inclusive Physical Education for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). In C. Ogelsby, K. Henige, and B. Stillwell (Ed.) Introduction to Kinesiology. Burlington, MA:Jones Barlett Learning , 2018.

Parsons, D., & Todd, T. Impact of Surf Therapy on Self-determination and Quality of Life for Yong Adults with ASD. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity, Denver, CO, June 21-23, 2018.

Kim, Y., Todd, T., Fujii, T., Lim, J., Vrongistinos, K., & Jung, T. (2016). Effects of Taekwondo intervention on balance in children with an autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation, 12, 314-3