The Research Center at Pacific University
Jim Sheedy - College of Optometry
Director, Vision Ergonimics Research Laboratory; Professor of Optometry
The human eye is a marvelous, complex organ, with amazing versatility. It’s safe to say, though, that our eyes were never designed for artiﬁcial lighting and computer screens. Optometry Professor Jim Sheedy has made a career studying how the work environment affects vision. Sheedy and a team of researchers explore how different lenses, lighting and computer screens affect comfort, work efﬁciency and vision performance in the work place. The research, which has also looked into the readability of different type fonts and pixel density, is funded by Microsoft, among others.
Sarah Phillips - College of Arts & Sciences
Associate Dean of Arts & Sciences; Professor of Sociology
Sociologist Sarah Phillips was taking a sculpting class when she suddenly became aware that the female nude model posing in the class was one of her Yale students. The chance encounter and her uncomfortable reaction to it resulted in ten years of research on models in the Western art tradition, and the book "Modeling Life" from the State University of New York Press, 2006. Told through the experiences of the models themselves, the book explores how society views nudity, sexuality and the creative process, part of Phillip's ongoing drive to better understand human behavior.
Student/faculty research: 2011 Pacific University Undergraduate Research Conference
Amber Buhler - College of Health Professions
Assistant Professor of Pharmacy
It’s a painful world out there and Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Amber Buhler is out to make things better. Her specialty: understanding the pathways involved in blocking pain transmission in humans. Employing a subﬁeld of cell chemistry called immunohistochemistry and ﬂuorescence microscopy to study the anatomy and neurotransmitter receptors of pain modulating neurons, she hopes to better identify pain pathways in order to make them better pharmaceutical targets for pain relief. The work could be useful in the treatment of a variety of chronic pain disorders.
Donna Kalmbach Phillips - College of Education
Associate Professor of Education
For ten years Donna Kalmbach Phillips has been researching how preservice teachers acquire teacher identity, with her most recent project focusing on a linguistically and culturally diverse group. With fellow researchers Robert Nava and Kristin Dixon, she asks: How do students of color identify with teachers when surrounded by overwhelming "whiteness?" How do they keep their sense of self? Does a truly diverse classroom allow more space for this to happen? Employing such questions and discourse analysis (analysis of language use), she examines the conﬂuence of race, gender and learning.