Senior Honors Students Present Research

Senior Honors Students Present Research

Senior Honors Students 2015

Nine School of Education and Social Policy seniors in the honors program presented posters of their research projects on June 5. All are students of Dean Penelope Peterson and teaching assistant Tracy Dobie, a Learning Sciences PhD student. Assistant dean Susan Olson coordinated the event. Following is a description of each student’s research.


Alex Baum

Alex Baum

Social Policy

Turn Up the Heat! A Study of Teaching and Learning during Family Board Game Play

This project examined learning during board game play with family members. The study found parents and children vocalized their thinking, attached meaning to game information and drew on real-life experiences to understand information.
Adviser: Michael Horn, PhD
Reader: Shirin Vossoughi, PhD


Luke Cianciotto

Luke Cianciotto

Social Policy

The Effect of Peacekeeping Coalition Composition on the Sustainability of Peace in Post Civil War Scenarios

This study indicates that coalition composition correlates with peace sustainability. The most successful coalition is small; composed primarily of economically powerful countries, but deploying troops from industrializing, militarily powerful nations; and overseen by the United Nations.
Adviser: Marina Henke, PhD
Reader: Kirabo Jackson, PhD


Amy Glazier-Torgerson

Amy Glazier-Torgerson

Social Policy

“I’m Not Here for Friends”: Emotional Support among Low-Income Mothers Enrolled in a Two-Generation Program

This project investigated emotional support for mothers in a two-generation education program. According to the study, participants starting with high emotional support were more likely to perceive high emotional support from the career coach and peer cohort than participants starting with low emotional support.
Adviser: Terri Sabol, PhD
Readers: Teresa Sommers, PhD, and Lilah Shapiro, PhD


Brenna Ledvora

Brenna Ledvora

Social Policy

Work and Family in German Corporations

In-depth interviews explored how female executives in Germany experience work and family. Cultural narratives encouraging women to have children and leave the workforce had significant impact on family and career decisions, as the women chose childcare, moved to less demanding jobs, and opted out of the management path.
Adviser: Lilah Shapiro, PhD
Reader: Franziska Lys, PhD


Rabeya Mallick

Rabeya Mallick

Human Development and Psychological Services

The Tumblr Support Community for Concerns Related to Eating Disorders

This study examined the Tumblr online support community for eating disorder concerns. Personal stories of eating disorder struggles and recovery, as well as support seeking, characterized “Eating Disorder” posts. “Body Image” posts focused on critiquing societal standards of beauty and health.
Adviser: Jolie Matthews, PhD
Reader: Renee Engeln, PhD


Ryan Miller

Ryan Miller

Social Policy

The Effect of High-Stakes Testing on Teacher Instructional Advice-Seeking

Teachers’ instructional advice seeking is important for the development of social capital. Comparing the advice seeking of elementary school teachers and staff in the years before and after a new high-stakes test, this study found that the new assessment led to an increase in interactions among teachers.
Adviser: Diane Schanzenbach, PhD
Readers: James Spillane, PhD, and Matthew Shirrell, PhD


Austin Schlatter

Austin Schlatter

Social Policy

The 20-Year Turnaround: Illinois’ 2005 Repeal of the 1985 Safe School Zone Act

This project investigated how national and state trends, political actors and policy-focused interest groups brought about the repeal of the Safe School Zone Act, which required that 15- and 16-year-olds be tried in adult criminal court for drug offenses within 1,000 feet of a school. Media scrutiny and an attitude shift on juvenile justice were key.
Advisers: Dan Lewis, PhD, and Heather Schoenfeld, PhD


Linzy Wagner

Linzy Wagner

Social Policy

Barriers to Mental Health Care Seeking on Northwestern University’s Campus: Understanding Undergraduate Student Mental Health Resource Utilization

What keeps students from seeking mental health help? This analysis revealed 10 major barriers for Northwestern students, with patient-based barriers the most significant but system-based barriers present as well. Future efforts should address concerns about being the ideal student and remove stigma and threat to sense of self, the study concludes.
Adviser: Mary Desler, PhD
Reader: Simone Ispa-Landa, PhD


Karen Wilber

Karen Wilber

Human Development and Psychological Services

Family and Religion in Cochabamba, Bolivia

Adults living in Cochabamba were interviewed about the Festival of Urkupiña, family and religion. This study found that while existing research of Western family structure and function may be inaccurate and inadequate in the Bolivian context, the theory and method of lived religion may be a significant tool for building new, dynamic and holistic theories on family in non-Western contexts.
Adviser: Lilah Shapiro, PhD
Reader: Shirin Vossoughi, PhD

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 6/10/15