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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Subject
Date Range
2011 2020


Despite the minor differences in the inclusiveness of the word, there is a general assumption among the scientific community that the 'pursuit of knowledge' is the most fundamental element in defining the word 'science'. However, a closer examination of how science is being conducted in modern-day South Korea reveals a value system starkly different from the value of knowledge. By analyzing the political discourse of the South Korean policymakers, mass media, and government documents, this study examines the definition of science in South Korea. The analysis revealed that the Korean science, informed by the cultural, historical, and societal contexts, is …

Contributors
Hyun, Byunghun, Hurlbut, Ben, Maienschein, Jane, et al.
Created Date
2011

The present essay addresses the epistemic difficulties involved in achieving consensus with respect to the Hayek-Keynes debate. In particular, it is argued that the debate cannot be settled on the basis of the observable evidence; or, more precisely, that the empirical implications of the theories of Hayek and Keynes are such that, regardless of what is observed, both of the theories can be interpreted as true, or at least, not falsified. Regardless of the evidence, both Hayek and Keynes can be interpreted as right. The underdetermination of theories by evidence is an old and ubiquitous problem in science. The present …

Contributors
Scheall, Scott Davis, Creath, Richard, Armendt, Brad, et al.
Created Date
2012

This thesis explores the conceptual span and plausibility of emergence and its applicability to the problem of mental causation. The early parts of the project explicate a distinction between weak and strong emergence as described by Jaegwon Kim. They also consider Kim's objections regarding the conceptual incoherence of strong emergence and the otiose nature of weak emergence. The paper then explores Mark Bedau's in-between conception of emergence and ultimately finds that middle conception to be both coherent and useful. With these three emergence distinctions in hand, the thesis goes on to explore Evan Thompson's recent work - Mind in Life …

Contributors
Fournier, Thomas, Kobes, Bernard W, Reynolds, Steven L, et al.
Created Date
2013

This is a study of scientific realism, and of the extent to which it is undermined by objections that have been raised by advocates of various forms of antirealism. I seek to develop and present a version of scientific realism that improves on past formulations, and then to show that standard antirealist arguments against it do not succeed. In this paper, I will first present my formulation of scientific realism, which conceives of theories as model-based and as fundamentally non-linguistic. I advocate an epistemic position that accords with indirect realism, and I review and assess the threat posed by theses …

Contributors
Novack, Alexander Dion, Armendt, Brad, Creath, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2013

This dissertation addresses the tendency among some disability scholars to overlook the importance of congenital deformity and disability in the pre-modern West. It argues that congenital deformity and disability deviated so greatly from able-bodied norms that they have played a pivotal role in the history of Western Civilization. In particular, it explores the evolution of two seemingly separate, but ultimately related, ideas from classical antiquity through the First World War: (1) the idea that there was some type of significance, whether supernatural or natural, to the existence of congenital deformity and (2) the idea that the existence of disabled people …

Contributors
Parry, Matthew, Fuchs, Rachel, Tirosh-Samuelson, Hava, et al.
Created Date
2013

Emergentism offers a promising compromise in the philosophy of mind between Cartesian substance dualism and reductivistic physicalism. The ontological emergentist holds that conscious mental phenomena supervene on physical phenomena, but that they have a nature over and above the physical. However, emergentist views have been subjected to a variety of powerful objections: they are alleged to be self-contradictory, incompatible with mental causation, justified by unreliable intuitions, and in conflict with our contemporary scientific understanding of the world. I defend the emergentist position against these objections. I clarify the concepts of supervenience and of ontological novelty in a way that ensures …

Contributors
Watson, Jeffrey J., Kobes, Bernard W, Pinillos, Nestor, et al.
Created Date
2013

Health and healing in the United States is in a moment of deep and broad transformation. Underpinning this transformation is a shift in focus from practitioner- and system-centric perspectives to patient and family expectations and their accompanying localized narratives. Situated within this transformation are patients and families of all kinds. This shift's interpretation lies in the converging and diverging trails of biomedicine, a patient-centric perspective of consensus between practitioner and patient, and postmodern philosophy, a break from prevailing norms and systems. Lending context is the dynamic interplay between increasing ethnic/cultural diversity, acculturation/biculturalism, and medical pluralism. Diverse populations continue to navigate …

Contributors
Krahe, Jennifer Anne Eve, Lamb, Gerri, Evans, Bronwynne, et al.
Created Date
2013

The landscape of science education is changing. Scientific research and the academy are both becoming increasingly complex, competitive, interdisciplinary, and international. Many federal research agencies, scientific professional societies, and science educators seem to agree on the importance of strong ethics education to help young scientists navigate this increasingly craggy terrain. But, what actually should be done? When it comes to teaching ethics to future scientists, is the apparent current emphasis on basic responsible conduct of research (RCR) sufficient, or should moral theory also be taught in science ethics education? In this thesis I try engage this question by focusing on …

Contributors
Milleson, Valerye Michelle, Robert, Jason, Herkert, Joseph, et al.
Created Date
2014

During the 1960s, the long-standing idea that traits or behaviors could be explained by natural selection acting on traits that persisted "for the good of the group" prompted a series of debates about group-level selection and the effectiveness with which natural selection could act at or across multiple levels of biological organization. For some this topic remains contentious, while others consider the debate settled, even while disagreeing about when and how resolution occurred, raising the question: "Why have these debates continued?" Here I explore the biology, history, and philosophy of the possibility of natural selection operating at levels of biological …

Contributors
Dimond, Christopher C., Collins, James P., Gadau, Juergen, et al.
Created Date
2014

Neuroimaging has appeared in the courtroom as a type of `evidence' to support claims about whether or not criminals should be held accountable for their crimes. Yet the ability to abstract notions of culpability and criminal behavior with confidence from these imagines is unclear. As there remains much to be discovered in the relationship between personal responsibility, criminal behavior, and neurological abnormalities, questions have been raised toward neuroimaging as an appropriate means to validate these claims. This project explores the limits and legitimacy of neuroimaging as a means of understanding behavior and culpability in determining appropriate criminal sentencing. It highlights …

Contributors
Taddeo, Sarah, Robert, Jason S, Marchant, Gary, et al.
Created Date
2014

Do emotions help explain our behaviors? Can they condemn us, excuse us, orr mitigate our moral responsibility orr blameworthiness? Can they explain our rationality and irrationality, orr warrant such attributions? Can they be justified orr warranted? Are they constitutive aspects of our consciousness, identity, characters, virtues, orr epistemic status? The answer to these questions, at least to a significant extent, depends on what emotions are. This illustrates the importance of what emotions are to academics across multiple disciplines, as well as to members of governing bodies, organizations, communities, and groups. Given the great importance of emotions to various aspects of …

Contributors
Mun, Cecilea, Calhoun, Cheshire, Kobes, Bernard, et al.
Created Date
2014

This dissertation explores the megamachine, a prominent metaphor in American humanist and philosopher of technology, Lewis Mumford's Myth of the Machine series. The term refers critically to dynamic, regimented human capacities that drive scientific and technical innovation in society. Mumford's view of the nature of collectives focuses on qualities and patterns that emerge from the behavior of groups, societies, systems, and ecologies. It is my aim to reenergize key concepts about collective capacities drawn from Lewis Mumford's critique of historical and modern sociotechnical arrangements. I investigate the possibility of accessing those capacities through improved design for Technology Assessment (TA), formal …

Contributors
Gano, Gretchen Lynn, Guston, David, Miller, Clark, et al.
Created Date
2014

The Modern Synthesis embodies a theory of natural selection where selection is to be fundamentally understood in terms of measures of fitness and the covariance of reproductive success and trait or character variables. Whether made explicit or left implicit, the notion that selection requires that some trait variable cause reproductive success has been deemphasized in our modern understanding of exactly what selection amounts to. The dissertation seeks to advance a theory of natural selection that is fundamentally causal. By focusing on the causal nature of natural selection (rather than on fitness or statistical formulae), certain conceptual and methodological problems are …

Contributors
Anderson, Wesley, Armendt, Brad, Creath, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2016

Systems biology studies complex biological systems. It is an interdisciplinary field, with biologists working with non-biologists such as computer scientists, engineers, chemists, and mathematicians to address research problems applying systems’ perspectives. How these different researchers and their disciplines differently contributed to the advancement of this field over time is a question worth examining. Did systems biology become a systems-oriented science or a biology-oriented science from 1992 to 2013? This project utilized computational tools to analyze large data sets and interpreted the results from historical and philosophical perspectives. Tools deployed were derived from scientometrics, corpus linguistics, text-based analysis, network analysis, and …

Contributors
Zou, Yawen, Laubichler, Manfred, Maienschein, Jane, et al.
Created Date
2016

At the interface of developmental biology and evolutionary biology, the very criteria of scientific knowledge are up for grabs. A central issue is the status of evolutionary genetics models, which some argue cannot coherently be used with complex gene regulatory network (GRN) models to explain the same evolutionary phenomena. Despite those claims, many researchers use evolutionary genetics models jointly with GRN models to study evolutionary phenomena. How do those researchers deploy those two kinds of models so that they are consistent and compatible with each other? To address that question, this dissertation closely examines, dissects, and compares two recent research …

Contributors
Elliott, Steve, Creath, Richard, Laubichler, Manfred D., et al.
Created Date
2017

This dissertation begins to lay out a small slice of the history of morphological research, and how it has changed, from the late 19th through the close of the 20th century. Investigators using different methods, addressing different questions, holding different assumptions, and coming from different research fields have pursued morphological research programs, i.e. research programs that explore the process of changing form. Subsequently, the way in which investigators have pursued and understood morphology has witnessed significant changes from the 19th century to modern day research. In order to trace this shifting history of morphology, I have selected a particular organ, …

Contributors
MacCord, Kate, Maienschein, Jane, Laubichler, Manfred, et al.
Created Date
2017

Over the last half century, global healthcare practices have increasingly relied on technological interventions for the detection, prevention, and treatment of disability and disease. As these technologies become routinized and normalized into medicine, the social and political dimensions require substantial consideration. Such consideration is particularly critical in the context of ableism, in which bodily and cognitive differences such as disabilities are perceived as deviance and demand intervention. Further, neoliberalism, with its overwhelming tendency to privatize and individualize, creates conditions under which social systems abdicate responsibility for social issues such as ableism, shifting accountability onto individuals to prevent or mitigate difference …

Contributors
Monteleone, Rebecca, Fonow, Mary Margaret, Ross, Heather, et al.
Created Date
2020

Cancer has a financial impact worldwide. According to a study published by the American Cancer Society, “cancer accounts for 1.5% of global gross domestic product loss per year” (John & Ross, 2010). The legal and economic costs of death are not something normally addressed with patients prior to the occurrence of death. With an integrative approach, education may help reduce financial stressors for both the patient and family, while offering cost saving benefits to the facilities involved. Studies have shown that education pertaining to advanced care planning help to reduce hospital visits and the costs associated with the last six …

Contributors
Simundson, Julie Lynn, Rodriguez, Yolanda, Scheall, Scott, et al.
Created Date
2020