July 11, 2016

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

Hayley Jackson, Sabrina Ogletree Win Best Poster Award at VSU Symposium

Pictured, from left to right, are Dr. James LaPlant, assistant vice president for research and dean of the Graduate School; Hayley Jackson; Sabrina Ogletree; and Dr. Brian Gerber, interim provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

VALDOSTA — Hayley Jackson and Sabrina Ogletree’s “Visual Working Memory” won the Best Poster Award in the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services at the 2016 Undergraduate Research Symposium hosted by Valdosta State University.

“We presented a set of pictures to 41 students for 30 seconds and then gave them two minutes to record what they remembered,” shared Jackson and Ogletree, who both anticipate graduating from VSU in May 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Education in communication disorders.

“After three trials we found that their memory improved. This shows that exposure to repeated visual stimuli causes the short-term memory to be stored in long-term memory. We did this experiment with our CSD 3080: Introduction to Neurology in Communication Disorders class because we were learning about the different lobes and functions of the brain at the same time.”  

Jackson and Ogletree’s award-winning research was guided by Dr. Ruth Renee Hannibal and Dr. Crystal Randolph, faculty members in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

All freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors at VSU were invited to submit proposals for the 22nd annual Undergraduate Research Symposium. Individual academic departments and colleges then selected the university’s best paper, poster, and video research presentations, as well as creative arts exhibits, to be featured throughout the four-day event and to compete for prizes.

“Each year I am incredibly impressed with the quality of our undergraduate student research, scholarship, and creative work,” said Dr. James LaPlant, assistant vice president for research and dean of the Graduate School. “The students are making original contributions to the body of knowledge of their disciplines. Many of the students are doing research that we often do not see until the graduate level.”

The Undergraduate Research Symposium reflects VSU’s commitment to increasing the opportunities available for undergraduate students to participate in research through specialized courses, engagement in internships and service learning, and other opportunities. This has many benefits, according to the university’s Council on Undergraduate Research, as students who engage in research activities are able to build relationships resulting in enhanced learning with their faculty mentors, are more likely to be retained, are more likely to pursue advanced degrees, have an increased knowledge base of research methodology, and are more likely to promote an innovation-oriented culture.

Jackson, 21, is a regular on the Dean’s List and a member of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Her future plans include earning a Master of Education in communication sciences and disorders and working as a school-based speech-language pathologist. She is the daughter of Jeff and Tillie Jackson of Vidalia.

Ogletree, 20, is a regular on the Dean’s List and a member of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She hopes to remain at VSU after earning her bachelor’s degree and pursue a Master of Education in communication sciences and disorders. She is the daughter of Dale and Tonya Ogletree of Kite.

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Valdosta State University’s 2013-2019 Strategic Plan represents a renewal of energy and commitment to the foundational principles for comprehensive institutions.

Implementation of the plan’s five goals, along with their accompanying objectives and strategies, supports VSU’s institutional mission and the University System of Georgia’s mission for comprehensive universities. 

The story above demonstrates VSU's commitment to meeting the following goals: 

Goal 1: Recruit, retain, and graduate a quality, diverse student population and prepare students for roles as leaders in a global society.

Goal 3: Promote student, employee, alumni, retiree, and community engagement in our mission.

Goal 4: Foster an environment of creativity and scholarship.

Visit http://www.valdosta.edu/administration/planning/strategic-plan.php to learn more.