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Research & Scholarship at Carleton

All around Carleton’s campus you’ll find faculty and students engaged in exciting, meaningful research and scholarship. Whether they are working to understand plant diseases, uncovering rural French life of the 19th century, or creating thought-provoking works of art, they are engaged together in the practice of deep inquiry and joy of learning that defines Carleton.

Three major types of research & scholarship take place at Carleton:

Research and Scholarship

1. Student Scholarship

Students are encouraged through Comps, independent study classes, and fellowship opportunities, to pursue significant scholarly work. Examples of student works include:

  • Zhi You Koh ’19 traveled to Nanjing, China. Through an investigation of historical topography and local archives, he researched the extent and particularities of popular support for the Taiping and 1911 Revolutions.  He received a Chang-Lan Fellowship to pursue this project.

    Urmila Kutikkad ’18 explored Siberian political resistance and cultural preservation in Buryatia through poetry. She worked closely with poet Bair Dugarov to translate his poetry into English in a way that retains his voice and cultural identity. Ultimately, she hopes to introduce indigenous voices into traditional Russian discourse. She received a Class of 1963 fellowship to pursue this project.

    Fiona Fraser ’18
    immersed herself in the works of Norwegian artist Edvard Munch by studying his original woodblocks and lesser-known prints in Oslo and Hamburg. She plans to create a collection of hand-printed fabric quilts inspired by Munch’s homeland, artistic process, and woodcut prints.  She received an Independent Research fellowship to pursue this project.

    Cory Renay Friendshuh ’19
    visited alternative communities in Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia, immersing herself in each place and recording her experiences through visual art and journalistic writing. She plans to explore links between the psychology of alternative living and artistic expression, and to write a book about it.  She received a Larson International fellowship to pursue this project.

    Gus Holley '20
    presented his paper, "Recapture the Ruanxian Techniques and Notation of the Medieval Round Lute" at the 20th International CHIME conference at UCLA, which draws presenters from around the world.  He was funded by the Parents Fund for Academic Excellence.

Student Scholarship

  • Research and Scholarship

2. Faculty Scholarship

Carleton faculty pursue rigorous, in-depth research and study as an integral part of their faculty role. Examples of recent faculty scholarship include:

  • Grawe, Nathan
    Grawe, Nathan D. Demographics and the Demand for Higher Education. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2018. 

  • Schier, Steven
    Schier, Steven E. and Todd E. Eberly. The Trump Presidency. Rowman & Littlefield, 2017. 

  • Flory, Andy
    Flory, Andrew. I Hear a Symphony. University of Michigan Press, 2017.

  • Vrtis, George
    McNeill, J.R. and George Vrtis. Mining North America: An Environmental History since 1522. University of California Press, 2017. 

  • Beck, Jay
    Beck Jay. Designing Sound: Audiovisual Aesthetics in 1970s American Cinema. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2016.

  • Dobrow, Bob
    Dobrow, Robert R. Introduction to Stochastic Processes with R. Wiley, 2016.

  • Feldman-Savelsberg, Pamela
    Feldman-Savelsberg, Pamela.  Mothers on the Move: Reproducing Belonging Between Africa and Europe. University of Chicago Press, 2016.
  • Hewett Greg
    Hewett, Greg. Blindsight. Coffee House Press, 2016.
  • Galotti, Kathie
    Glotti, Kathleen M. Cognitive Development: Infancy Through Adolescence, 2nd Edition. Sage Publishing, 2016.
  • Liben-Nowell, David
    Liben-Nowell, David. Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2016.
  • Salomon, Noah
    Salomon, Noah. For Love of the Prophet: An Ethnography of Sudan's Islamic State.  Princeton University Press, 2016.
  • Research and Scholarship

3. Student-Faculty Scholarship

Carleton students and faculty regularly collaborate on research. Students may assist faculty in their work, or faculty may advise student-directed scholarship.

  • Kiya Govek ’18 and Camden Sikes ’18
    Finding Consensus Phylogenetic Trees for Tumor Evolution
    Phylogenetic trees are a structure commonly used to represent the evolutionary history of a set of species. There exist a number of algorithms that solve the problem of building a consensus tree from a set of conflicting phylogenetic trees. This project considered a variant on this problem inspired by recent efforts to model cancer evolution with phylogenetic trees.

    Supervised by Layla Oesper.

  • Emma Halper ’18
    Anarchy! (a handbook)
    This project focused on creating a piece of devised theater centered around the ideas of anarchy and resistance. The goal was to devise a play that explored, through both form and content, the principles, uses, and critiques of anarchical thought.

Supervised by Roger Bechtel.

  • Andrew Hoyt ’19
    Solidago cover affects species richness and plant ecology in restored tallgrass prairies
    The Carleton GRASS project prairie is a restored tallgrass prairie in which two dominant grasses, Androprogon geradii and Sorghastrum nutan, have been planted selectively. The goal of this project was to study the ecological impact of these two species dominant plant species and their absence, but since the prairie has been planted, portions have become dominated by Solidago species, particularly Solidago altisimma and canadensis. This presented the unique opportunity to study the impact of these Solidago species on the ecology of the ecosystem.

Supervised by Dan Hernandez and Mark McKone.

  • Brittany Johnson ’18 and Claire Jensen ’18
    Spinning Room Data Analysis in the Workhouse
    In the early nineteenth century House of Industry children were often assigned to daily    work spinning skeins of yarn. This project worked to understand the role that work ethic and the possibility of social and economic reward played in the surprisingly industrial setting of early nineteenth century House of Industry spinning rooms.

Supervised by Susannah Ottaway.

Student-Faculty Scholarship