The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the depth and significance of healthcare inequality in the United States. Xiao, Xiao, and Gong examine healthcare disparities in the Richmond (Virginia) metropolitan area by analyzing whether people from disadvantaged populations must travel for longer to reach healthcare facilities.
Natural selection shapes the evolution of all organisms, and one question of interest is whether natural selection will reach a "stopping point": a stable, ideal, value for any particular trait. Madhan and Kanagavel tackle this question by building a computer simulation of trait evolution in organisms.
This study collected samples from water bodies near hog farms and an aquatic environment not near a hog farm. It was hypothesized that water bodies near the hog farms would have lower water quality with higher turbidity, total dissolved solids (TDS), and pH than the water body not in proximity to a hog farm because of water contamination with hog waste. Results showed that the turbidity was 4–6 times higher, TDS was 1.5–2 times higher, and pH was 3 units higher in the 2 experimental locations compared to the control location. This study and its findings are important for understanding the impact of hog farming on the proximal water bodies.
In this study the author undertakes a careful characterization of a special type of chemical reaction, called an oscillating Belousov-Zhabotinsky (or B-Z) reaction, which has a number of existing applications in biomedical engineering as well as the potential to be useful in future developments in other fields of science and engineering. Specifically, she uses experimental measurements in combination with computational analysis to investigate whether the reaction is cohesive – that is, whether the oscillations between chemical states will remain consistent or change over time as the reaction progresses. Her results indicate that the reaction is not cohesive, providing an important foundation for the development of future technologies using B-Z reactions.
Climate change is an important and contentious issue that has far-reaching implications for our future. The authors here compare primary temperature and precipitation data from almost 200 years ago against the present day. They find that the average annual temperature in Brooklyn, NY has risen significantly over this time, as has the frequency of precipitation, though not the amount of precipitation. These data stress the need for more ecologically-conscious choices in our daily lives.
In this study, the biodiversity of marine animals was studied at different locations along a mangrove, which is a salt-tolerant shrub with elaborate root structures that is found on tropical coastlines.
Cosmic rays are high-energy astronomical particles originating from various sources across the universe. Here, The authors sought to understand how surface-level cosmic-ray muon flux is affected by atmospheric attenuation by measuring the variation in relative muon-flux rate relative to zenith angle, testing the hypothesis that muons follow an exponential attenuation model. The attenuation model predicts an attenuation length of 6.3 km. This result implies that only a maximum of 24% of muons can reach the Earth’s surface, due to both decay and atmospheric interactions.
Reaching one’s maximum jump height requires optimizing one’s jump techniques. In order to find this optimal jump technique, three high school participants with varying vertical jump (VJ) abilities recorded videos of themselves with varying degrees of maximum/minimum shoulder, knee, and hip angles—with or without respect to the horizontal—at the isometric phase of a regular countermovement (CM) VJ or countermovement jump (CMJ). Results showed that the shoulder angle without respect to the horizontal (SA), knee angle with respect to the horizontal (KAH), and the hip angle with respect to the horizontal (HAH) possessed a more consistent correlation with VJ height across the subjects compared to the same respective angles with opposite relations to the horizontal.
Whether it is through implicit association or intentional practice, yoga has been known to help individuals maintain good mental health. However, many communities, such as South Asian communities, often project the stereotype that embodies neglecting topics such as mental health and considering them taboo. In this online survey-based study, the authors focused on examining whether yoga would alter individuals’ attitudes toward mental health. They hypothesized that 1) participants who regularly practiced yoga would be more familiar with the term mental health, 2) participants who practiced yoga would value their mental health more, and 3) participants who practiced yoga regularly would be more open about their mental health and be more likely to reach out for professional help if needed. They did not find a statistical significance for any of our hypotheses which suggests that yoga may not have an effect on perceptions of mental health in yoga-practicing Indian adults.
Every year, around 40% of undergraduate students in the United States discontinue their studies, resulting in a loss of valuable education for students and a loss of money for colleges. Even so, colleges across the nation struggle to discover the underlying causes of these high dropout rates. In this paper, the authors discuss the use of machine learning to find correlations between the built environment factors and the retention rates of colleges. They hypothesized that one way for colleges to improve their retention rates could be to improve the physical characteristics of their campus to be more pleasing. The authors used image classification techniques to look at images of colleges and correlate certain features like colors, cars, and people to higher or lower retention rates. With three possible options of high, medium, and low retention rates, the probability that their models reached the right conclusion if they simply chose randomly was 33%. After finding that this 33%, or 0.33 mark, always fell outside of the 99% confidence intervals built around their models’ accuracies, the authors concluded that their machine learning techniques can be used to find correlations between certain environmental factors and retention rates.