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Math and computer science instructor published in two scientific journals


Math and computer science instructor published in two scientific journals

GREENVILLE, Pa.—Thiel College Instructor of Math and Computer Science Ronald Anderson ’07 has co-authored two scientific papers that were recently published in academic journals.

The first paper, “Visual, Auditory, and Cross Modal Sensory Processing in Adults with Autism: An EEG Power and BOLD fMRI Investigation,” was authored by Elizabeth C. Hames, Ph.D.; Brandi Murphy; Ravi Rajmohan, Ph.D.; Anderson; Mary Baker, Ph.D.; Stephen Zupancic, Ph.D.; Michael O’Boyle, Ph.D.; and David Richman, Ph.D. The study used neuroimaging methods to determine how a person with autism spectrum disorder processes various combined stimuli. The paper was published in the April edition of Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. The open-access journal endeavors to understand the brain mechanisms supporting cognitive and social behavior in humans and how these mechanisms might be altered in disease states.

The second paper, “An fMRI study of advertising appeals and their relationship to product attractiveness and buying intentions,” considered the effects of attractiveness and celebrity endorsements on brain activity surrounding advertising. Its findings suggest that using a celebrity endorsement for a product may boost the recollection of the brand while at the same time decreasing buying intentions in consumers. The paper was authored by Hyo Jung (Julie) Chang, Ph.D.; Michael O’Boyle, Ph.D.; Anderson; and Chompoonut Suttikun. It appears in the July issue of the Journal of Consumer Behavior. The journal aims to promote the understanding of consumer behavior, consumer research and consumption through the publication of double-blind, peer-reviewed and top-quality theoretical and empirical research.

Collaboration on the projects began several years ago, but the bulk of the studies were conducted in 2013 and 2014. Anderson worked with the neuroimaging systems hardware, assisted with volunteer preparation and data collection, and conducted some of the data analyses. He also wrote some of the software code used in the imaging technology for the first paper.

“The major takeaway for everyone is to realize that neuroimaging is an inherently multidisciplinary field,” Anderson said. “The brain is the most complicated parallel-processing system known. The perspectives and skills of people from a multitude of fields are necessary to crack the secrets of the human brain.”

Anderson graduated from Thiel College with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics in 2007. He earned a master’s degree in 2011 from Texas Tech University. He is completing a doctoral degree in electrical engineering from Texas Tech University.

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About Thiel College

Thiel College is an independent college founded in the Lutheran tradition. Located in Greenville, Pa., the College offers 60 majors and minors, 24 varsity sports, and an 11:1 student-faculty ratio. The College is also home to a Master of Science in speech-language pathology, a Leadership Master of Business Administration and a Management Master of Business Administration. Both master’s degree programs offer innovative and accelerated five-year paths which allow students to earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in five years. The speech-language pathology program also has an accelerated 15-month graduate-level program. The M.B.A. program also has a 12-month post-graduate program. A dedicated faculty paired with dynamic research and internship opportunities produce numerous graduate school and job placements. Coeducational from its beginnings, the College remains committed to combining tradition with innovation.

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