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College of Arts and Sciences Published research/scholarship/creative work

Archaeologist plays major role in UN climate report

Tim Kohler.There is perhaps no one in the Inland Northwest who understands the dire consequences laid out in the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) report better than Tim Kohler, a WSU emeritus professor of archaeology and evolutionary anthropology.

He holds the distinction of being the first archaeologist to contribute to an IPCC report as a lead author.  He is also » More …

Discordant couples divided on vaccination

Closeup of the upper arms of a couple—one with a blue bandage after receiving a vaccination; one without receiving a vaccination.A small but significant portion of couples contain one partner who is vaccinated against COVID-19 and another partner who is not, a Washington State University survey has found. Reasons for not getting the shot also differed depending on which partner in the couple was reporting it, particularly when it came to religious reasons. » More …

Cheek swab potential predictor of preterm birth

Premature newborn baby girl in a hospital incubator.A signature found by WSU researchers in the cheek cells of mothers and fathers of preterm infants may help develop a test to determine whether a pregnancy may end too early. Such a test could help prevent premature births and the many resulting health impacts on infants by alerting medical providers to the need for early intervention measures. » More …

Successful recording in the COVID era

Chris Dickey.At the onset of the pandemic, performers around the world had to come to terms with what safe music making would look like for the foreseeable future. Many instrumentalists hoping to perform had to play solo or utilize music with electronics to accompany them.

“When I think of performing, I immediately envision playing with other musicians in the same space. » More …

Getting the ratio right

A polar bear eating lard.A high protein diet appears linked to kidney disease and shortened lifespans for captive polar bears, a relationship similarly suspected in humans, according to a review led by WSU wildlife biologist Charlie Robbins.

“Zoos made some assumptions in the past about the nutritional requirements of polar bears because their diet is almost exclusively » More …

Book Review: Sugar Birds

Cheryl Grey Bostrom with book cover for Sugar Birds.When Agate “Aggie” Hayes, a spirited and outdoorsy 10-year-old who sketches birds and climbs trees too high, unintentionally causes a devastating fire, she flees in an inflatable boat and hides out in the backwoods, riddled with guilt, dodging bird dogs, and evading rescue. She survives on cattails, salmonberries, and her own instincts and resourcefulness⁠—until someone catches on. » More …

Increasing trend of concurrent wildfire air pollution and severe heat

Orange skyline resulting from wildfiresLarge wildfires and severe heat events are happening more often at the same time, worsening air pollution across the western United States, a study led by Washington State University researchers has found. In 2020, more than 68% of the western U.S.—representing about 43 million people—were affected in one day by the resulting harmful-levels of air pollution, the highest number in 20 years.

“We have seen an increasing trend in » More …