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Barrett, The Honors College Thesis/Creative Project Collection


Barrett, the Honors College accepts high performing, academically engaged students and works with them in collaboration with all of the other academic units at Arizona State University. All Barrett students complete a thesis or creative project, supervised and defended in front of a faculty committee. The thesis or creative project allows students to explore an intellectual interest and produce an original piece of scholarly research. The thesis or creative project is a student’s opportunity to explore areas of academic interest with greater intensity than is possible in a single course. It is also an opportunity to engage with professors, nationally recognized in their fields and specifically interested and committed to working with honors students. This work provides tangible evidence of a student’s research, writing and creative skills to graduate schools and/or prospective employers.


Date Range
2013 2018


Rhesus (Macaca mulatta) and cynomolgus (M. fascicularis) macaques are the most commonly used nonhuman primate models in biomedical research. It is therefore critical to correctly infer each study animal’s ABO blood group phenotype to prevent fatal transfusion- and transplantation-induced immune responses. While most macaques can be efficiently and accurately phenotyped using a DNA-based assay, we have identified some animals that are unable to be classified as type A, B, or AB and therefore exhibit an indeterminate phenotype. The purpose of this study was to develop a protocol for resolving indeterminate blood group phenotypes and consequently determine if these animals do ...

Contributors
Vizor, Choice Popsira, Kanthaswamy, Sreetharan, Oldt, Robert, et al.
Created Date
2018-05

Since its discovery in 1524, many people have characterized the vermiform appendix. Charles Darwin considered the human appendix to be a vestige and a useless structure. Others at the time opposed this hypothesis. However, Darwin’s hypothesis became prevalent one until recently when there became a renewed interest in the appendix because of advancements in microscopes, knowledge of the immune system, and phylogenetics. In this review, I will argue that the vermiform appendix, although still not completely understood, has important functions. First, I will give the anatomy of the appendix. I will discuss the comparative anatomy between different animals and also ...

Contributors
Prestwich, Shelby Elizabeth, Cartwright, Reed, Lynch, John, et al.
Created Date
2018-05

In today’s world, critical thinking and using a systems approach to problem solving are skills that are far too rare. In the age of information, the truth has become muddled by “fake news” and a constant barrage of exaggerations or blatant falsehoods. Without critical thinking skills, “many members of our society do not command the scientific literacy necessary to address important societal issues and concerns” (NCES 2012, p.11). Additionally, far too many people are incapable of thinking long term and understanding how their actions affect others. Because of this shortsightedness our world is facing one of its biggest ecological crises ...

Contributors
Votaw, Alexandra Lindsay, Larson, Kelli, Herrmann, Lisa, et al.
Created Date
2018-05

Three populations of experimentally evolved Drosophila melanogaster populations made up of high temperature (H, constant 25 ᵒC), low temperature (C, constant 16 ᵒC) and temporal homogeneity (T, environment changes between 16 ᵒC and 25 ᵒC) were prepared and assayed to determine difference in citrate synthase activity. Between the three groups, the results were inconclusive: the resulting reaction rates in units of nmol min-1mgfly-1 were 81.8 + 20.6, 101 + 15.6, and 96.9 + 25.2 for the hot (H), cold (C), and temporally homogeneous (T) groups, respectively. We conclude that the high associated variability was due to a lack of control ...

Contributors
Belohlavek, David, Angilletta, Michael, Francisco, Wilson, et al.
Created Date
2015-05

Photosynthesis is the process by which plants, algae, and bacteria use light energy to synthesize organic compounds to use as energy. Among these organisms are a kind of purple photosynthetic bacteria called Rhodobacter sphaeroides, a non-sulfur purple bacteria that grows aerobically in the dark by respiration. There have been many contributions throughout the history of this group of bacteria. Rhodobacter sphaeroides is metabolically very diverse as it has many different ways to obtain energy--aerobic respiration and anoxygenic photosynthesis being just a couple of the ways to do so. This project is part of a larger ongoing project to study different ...

Contributors
Nucuta, Diana Ileana, Woodbury, Neal, Lin, Su, et al.
Created Date
2014-05

This work examines one dimension of the effect that complex human transport systems have on the spread of Chikungunya Virus (CHIKV) in the Caribbean from 2013 to 2015. CHIKV is transmitted by mosquitos and its novel spread through the Caribbean islands provided a chance to examine disease transmission through complex human transportation systems. Previous work by Cauchemez et al. had shown a simple distance-based model successfully predict CHIKV spread in the Caribbean using Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) statistical methods. A MCMC simulation is used to evaluate different transportation methods (air travel, cruise ships, and local maritime traffic) for the ...

Contributors
Fries, Brendan F, Perrings, Charles, Wilson Sayres, Melissa, et al.
Created Date
2015-12

“Going back as far as the time of Hippocrates, ancient Egyptians, tribal African nations, and many other early civilizations, humans used herbal remedies to treat their ailments. One such remedy was willow bark, used in tea form, to treat rheumatism and fevers. This remedy was around for many thousands of years, along with other treatments containing salicylates, although this was not understood at the time. As time has gone on, the willow bark tea has been transformed into aspirin as we know it today. In addition to its medicinal uses, aspirin has become versatile in its uses, including use in ...

Contributors
Montes, Ariana, Huffman, Holly, Garg, Vikas, et al.
Created Date
2017-05

Abstract As we move forward in education reform in the globalized 21st century, the United States must visit new ways to teach science in high school classrooms. The goal of this investigation is to analyze the current research literature for the best and most promising teaching strategies and techniques in secondary education biology classrooms that promote academic excellence for all students. Looking at policy and school reform literature in science education to establish the context of the current system, the paper will not focus on the political as or systematic changes needed to ground an overall successful system. However, because ...

Contributors
Hildebrandt, Kevin Andrew, Ovando, Carlos, Schugurensky, Daniel, et al.
Created Date
2013-05

One hypothesis for why insects are smaller than vertebrates is that the blind-ended tracheal respiratory system challenges oxygen delivery for larger insects. Supporting this hypothesis, several studies have documented that larger insect species have larger gas transport structures than expected by isometric scaling. To further test this hypothesis, we performed the first inter-specific study of the scaling of spiracle size, using ten scarab beetle species, including some of the most massive insects. Using micro-CT, we measured the cross sectional area and depth of all eight spiracles. Areas of large spiracles in the anterior portion of the animal showed hypermetric scaling, ...

Contributors
Wagner, Julian Morgan, Harrison, Jon F., VandenBrooks, John, et al.
Created Date
2017-05

We examined the evolutionary morphological responses of Drosophila melanogaster that had evolved at constant cold (16°), constant hot (25°C), and fluctuating (16° and 25°C). Flies that were exposed to the constant low mean temperature developed larger thorax, wing, and cell sizes than those exposed to constant high mean temperatures. Males and females both responded similarly to thermal treatments in average wing and cell size. The resulting cell area for a given wing size in thermal fluctuating populations remains unclear and remains a subject for future research.

Contributors
Adrian, Gregory John, Angilletta, Michael, Harrison, Jon, et al.
Created Date
2015-05