College of Arts and Sciences
Outstanding College Researchers Announced
photo of Jed Day, T.Y. Wang, Cynthia Huff

Jed Day, T.Y. Wang, Cynthia Huff

The College of Arts and Sciences is pleased to announce its 2014-2015 Outstanding College Researchers: Dr. James E. “Jed” Day, Department of Geography-Geology; Dr. Cynthia Huff, Department of English; and Dr. T.Y. Wang, Department of Politics and Government. “On behalf of the College of Arts and Sciences, I am delighted to extend congratulations to these professors,” said Dean Simpson. “They make valuable contributions to the body of knowledge in their respective fields and to Illinois State University.” One recipient is selected from each of the College’s three divisions—the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences/mathematics.

Professor Day is a geologist with expertise in Devonian stratigraphy and paleontology. He and his colleagues have developed the sea level curves for the Devonian and examined how the climate changed during the Devonian, as well as linkages between climate and sea level changes and mass extinctions during the Devonian. Through his work Dr. Day has become one of the foremost experts on the Devonian stratigraphy of the central (Illinois and Iowa) and western (western Canada) North American Basins. He has written five guidebooks detailing the Iowa and Illinois Basins, which have complemented numerous field trips for various organizations. His publications include an edited book, a book chapter, journal articles, and guidebooks. He has served as associate technical editor of Palaio and the Journal of Paleontology.

Professor Cynthia Huff has established a long and distinguished record of excellence in research since joining the faculty at ISU in 1989. She has established an international reputation in the fields of autobiography studies and women’s life writing. Dr. Huff currently has a number of scholarly works in progress. Her book manuscript, Family Fictions, expands on her foundational archival research and analysis of nineteenth-century women’s manuscript diaries and letters to draw broader attention to familial productions of prominent nineteenth-century British families. She was the recipient of a competitive Faculty Research Award in 2010 and was a Fulbright fellow at the prestigious Institute for Historical Research at the University of London from 1981 to 1982.

Professor T.Y. Wang is an exceptional scholar with national and international repute who has made significant contributions to the field of comparative politics, particularly to the study of political stability and democratization in non-Western societies, and empirical research methodology. Dr. Wang is the author of seven authored/edited volumes and more than 35 articles and book chapters. Two of his books, Quantitative Analysis in Political Science and Regression Analysis of Categorical and Limited Dependent Variables (both in Chinese) are widely circulated in China and Taiwan. He is currently one of the co-editors of the Journal of Asian and African Studies and has served as peer reviewer for various academic presses.

News from the College

Graduate Students Win Thesis Awards

cas emblemTwo graduate students in the College of Arts and Sciences are the winners of Illinois State University James L. Fisher Outstanding Thesis Awards. Melinda S. Harrison, an alumna of the Department of English, is the winner of the University’s 2014 James L. Fisher Outstanding Thesis Competition. Her thesis is titled U.S.-Educated Multilingual Students in Community College: Transitioning from ESL to English 101. Dr. Lisya Seloni chaired Harrison’s committee. Stephen M. Mitchell, an alumnus of the Department of History, was named runner-up in the University competition. His thesis is titled Modernism on Trial: An Analysis of Historic Preservation Debates in Chicago. Dr. Alan Lessoff directed Mitchell’s thesis. The Fisher awards honor theses of the highest quality. (more…)

Atmanspacher to Speak at ISU

Harald Atmanspacher

The Department of Philosophy, in conjunction with the Department of Psychology, will present a brown-bag talk with Dr. Harald Atmanspacher, Head of the Department of Theory and Data Analysis Institute for Frontier Areas of Psychology and Mental Health in Frieburg, Germany. His talk “The Potential of Quantum Concepts for Models of Cognition,” will be free and open to the public. The event will be from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, October 29 in room 401A, Stevenson Hall.

A Night Out with Neandertals

Ancient people against the evening landscape.Dr. Fred H. Smith, University Professor of Anthropology, will be the featured speaker at a Main Street College event at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 30 in Room 116 of the Alumni Center. His talk, “Visiting the Ancestors: A Night Out with Neandertals,” is free and designed for the public. Main Street College was created by Dr. Greg Simpson, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, to share with the public the exciting and often entertaining work being across the College of Arts and Sciences. “My hope is that people from throughout the community will join us on October 30,” said Dean Simpson. “Dr. Smith’s work is extraordinarily interesting, and he is a most engaging speaker.” (more…)

New Faculty Profile: Tara L. Lyons
photo of Tara Lyons

Tara Lyons

Tara L. Lyons joins the Illinois State University Department of English as an assistant professor. Professor Lyons is looking forward to teaching courses in British Literature, Early Modern Studies, Shakespeare, and Book History. Since earning her Ph.D. in English Literature at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2011, Lyons has been teaching at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, where she was awarded the Chancellor’s Innovative Teaching Award in 2012.


More News from the College

Greetings from the Dean!

Dean Gregory SimpsonWelcome to the College of Arts and Sciences at Illinois State University. I invite you to explore on this site the many programs, majors, and minors that we have to offer you.

New way of recognizing faculty accomplishments!

The College recognizes that the receipt of individual fellowships and awards is an honor and we would like to be able to acknowledge the accomplishment of those faculty who receive this type of external funding.

Please help us recognize these accomplishments by completing the short form found here. (DOC)

Events and Deadlines

October 28 – Department of Physics, Prof. Mats Selen, University of Illinois, will present “Interactive Online Laboratories,” Room 214, Moulton Hall (MLT), 4 p.m.

October 29 – Department of Philosophy, Philosophical Society Meeting, Room 131, Stevenson Hall (STV), 5:30 p.m.

October 29 – Office of International Studies and Programs, Dr. Oleksandra Wallo, will present, “International Seminar Series: Ukrainian Cities Between East and West,” 1st Floor West Lounge, Bone Student Center (BON), 12 p.m.

October 30 – College of Arts and Sciences Main Street College Event, University Professor of Anthropology Fred H. Smith, will present “Visiting the Ancestors: A Night Out with Neandertals,” Alumni Center, 7 p.m. Free and open to the public.

October 30 – Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures/Spanish Club, “DIA DE LOS MUERTOS Cultural Presentation and Halloween Party,” 104 Kong Room, Hewett Manchester Residence Halls, 6 p.m. Costumes are optional.

October 30 – School of Biological Sciences, Dr. Viktor Kirik, School of Biological Sciences, will present a seminar, Room 201, Moulton Hall (MLT), 4 p.m.

October 31 – Department of Chemistry, Eric Grabowski, Department of Chemistry, will present, “Synthesis and Characterization of Monocarbaporphyrins,” Room 225, Julian, 3 p.m.

October 31 – Department of Physics, Dr. Namrata Tripathi, will present “The physics of lithium batteries,” Room 309, Moulton Hall (MLT), 12 p.m.

October 31 – Department of Physics, “Timothy Ferris’ Galaxies at ISU Planetarium,” Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for children ages 5 to 12 and seniors, and $2 for children ages 3 to 4, Planetarium, 7:30 p.m.

October 31 – Department of English, Undergraduate English Studies Symposium, Room 401, Stevenson Hall (STV, 9:30 a.m.