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From the College of Natural Sciences

Marc Airhart is the Communications Coordinator for the College of Natural Sciences. A long time member of the National Association of Science Writers, he has written for national publications including Scientific American, Mercury, The Earth Scientist, Environmental Engineer & Scientist, and StarDate Magazine. He also spent 11 years as a writer and producer for the Earth & Sky radio series. Contact me

Erin Dolan Appointed First Director of the Texas Institute for Discovery Education in Science

Erin Dolan Appointed First Director of the Texas Institute for Discovery Education in Science

Erin Dolan has been appointed the first Executive Director of the Texas Institute for Discovery Education in Science (TIDES), a newly formed institute for education innovation in the College of Natural Sciences (CNS) at The University of Texas at Austin. The institute was proposed in the CNS 2013 Strategic Plan as a way to enhance the college’s leading role in STEM education.

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University of Texas at Austin Unveils Cognitive Computing Course Based on IBM Watson

University of Texas at Austin Unveils Cognitive Computing Course Based on IBM Watson

IBM Watson LogoThe University of Texas at Austin's Department of Computer Science is partnering with IBM to launch a new cognitive computing course titled “Automated Question Answering” that gives students unprecedented access to one of IBM’s most prized innovations: Watson. The University of Texas at Austin is one of seven universities offering the new course this fall.

Three Members of Natural Sciences Named to UT Austin's Academy of Distinguished Teachers

Three Members of Natural Sciences Named to UT Austin's Academy of Distinguished Teachers

Three members in the College of Natural Sciences at The University of Texas at Austin that have been named to the university's respected Academy of Distinguished Teachers for 2014, said Gregory L. Fenves, executive vice president and provost. They are: John Stanton, professor, Department of Chemistry Peter Stone, professor, Depa...
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UT Austin Evolutionary Ecologist Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

UT Austin Evolutionary Ecologist Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced this week the election of 204 new members, including Eric Pianka, an evolutionary ecologist in The University of Texas at Austin's College of Natural Sciences.

Neurons in the Brain Tune into Different Frequencies for Different Spatial Memory Tasks

Neurons in the Brain Tune into Different Frequencies for Different Spatial Memory Tasks

The hippocampus. Image courtesy of the Colgin lab.

Your brain transmits information about your current location and memories of past locations over the same neural pathways using different frequencies of a rhythmic electrical activity called gamma waves, report neuroscientists at The University of Texas at Austin.

Shade Grown Coffee Shrinking as a Proportion of Global Coffee Production

Shade Grown Coffee Shrinking as a Proportion of Global Coffee Production

Coffee Management Map

The proportion of land used to cultivate shade grown coffee, relative to the total land area of coffee cultivation, has fallen by nearly 20 percent globally since 1996, according to a new study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and five other institutions.

Researchers Discover Possible New Target to Attack Flu Virus

Researchers Discover Possible New Target to Attack Flu Virus

Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin have discovered that a protein produced by the influenza A virus helps it outwit one of our body's natural defense mechanisms. That makes the protein a potentially good target for antiviral drugs directed against the influenza A virus.

The Horn: Junk Food, Good Science

The Horn: Junk Food, Good Science

Think you’ll always pick chocolate over a bag of chips? Don’t be so sure. Researchers have found that if they can get people to pay more attention to a particular type of junk food, they will begin to prefer it—even weeks or months after the experiment. The finding suggests a new way to manipulate our decisions and perhaps even encourage us to pick...
Possible Explanation for Human Diseases Caused by Defective Ribosomes

Possible Explanation for Human Diseases Caused by Defective Ribosomes

Ribosomes are essential for life, generating all of the proteins required for cells to grow. Mutations in some of the proteins that make ribosomes cause disorders characterized by bone marrow failure and anemia early in life, followed by elevated cancer risk in middle age. These disorders are generally called “ribosomopathies.”

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Neurobiologist Studies His Own Brain

Neurobiologist Studies His Own Brain

Dr. Russell Poldrack, professor of neurobiology and psychology, discusses his findings of a 14 month study he conducted on his own brain."We are particularly interested in how communication between different parts of my brain changes in relation to psychological factors such as stress or mood, and how it relates to biological factors that will...