Time Management Resources
Time management and organization skills are the hallmarks of academic success. The use of proven strategies such as planners and calendars, weekly schedules, and to-do lists helps students to manage academic responsibilities, build persistence, curb procrastination and ease stress.
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AI has gotten a lot of attention lately, especially services like ChatGPT, which can be used for everything from finding a good recipe to writing a blog post. A new study shows that it also might be a powerful tool in helping bad writers Excellerate their skills.
In a study published this week in Science, two MIT researchers examined whether ChatGPT could be used to reduce gaps in writing ability between employees. The duo recruited 453 data analysts, marketers, and college-educated professionals and asked them to perform two different writing tasks normally associated with their jobs—writing press releases or a short report, for instance.
Half of the participants were given the option of using ChapGPT to help them complete the second of the two tasks. Afterward, their work was graded by other professionals who worked in the same field on a scale of one to seven, with seven being the best result.
Overall, the participants who used ChatGPT did better than those who didn’t. ChatGPT users took 40% less time to complete their task than their counterparts, and their completed work scored 18% higher in evaluations than the work of those who didn’t use it.
The researchers note that while ChatGPT is powerful, it can also introduce errors, so people who use it to write for them will need to double-check that everything written by the AI tool is correct.
That said, the workers who participated in the study said they were more likely to use the tool in the future. "Workers exposed to ChatGPT during the experiment were 2 times as likely to report using it in their real job 2 weeks after the experiment and 1.6 times as likely 2 months after the experiment," the study found.
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Drexel’s Master of Science in Nonprofit Management: Public, Professional & Social Sectors helps you build a career with purpose—whether you’re just getting started, looking to transition or boosting your credentials in the nonprofit world. From human rights and social services to education and environmental outreach, our program can help you flourish in the field that excites you.
Our degree equips you with the following demonstrable skills:
Communication — Enhance your oral, written and presentation skills to easily and effectively collaborate with, and lead, others in the workplace. You also learn how to communicate with outside constituents, board members and community leaders while honoring the organization’s mission.
Campaign management — You build the strategic planning, management, communication and financial skills needed to effectively run annual funds and capital campaigns.
Donor cultivation — Using communication, leadership and nonprofit sector trends, as well as specific mission information, you cultivate interested individuals into donors, elevate small donors into capital-level donors, and maintain those relationships over time.
Ethics — You develop a strong moral and ethical framework to manage mission-driven, largely volunteer-based institutions.
Self-assessment — You gain the ability to examine one’s role, responsibility and effectiveness within an organization. By acknowledging strengths and weaknesses, you can capitalize on strengths while also targeting specific areas for growth.
The Master of Science in Nonprofit Management: Public, Professional & Social Sectors is an ideal degree for those looking to become, or enhance skills as a:
According to the National Philanthropic Trust, as of 2015, there were 1,521,052 charitable organizations registered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Urban Institute reported the nonprofit sector contributed an estimated $905.9 billion to the US economy in 2013. The 2015 Nonprofit Employment Practices Survey revealed that 10.7 million employees are employed in the nonprofit sector, and 50% of nonprofits reported an intention to hire more staff (compared to the private sector’s 36%).
Puzzles, chess and writing journals may be more than pure amusements to pass the time. These brain activities could help reduce the risk of dementia.
According to a latest study in JAMA Network Open, activities related to adult literacy, such as taking classes, using a computer or writing journals, as well as active mental tasks like games, cards, or crossword puzzles, were related to a reduced dementia risk over 10 years.
The study looked at 10,318 adults in Australia who were 70 years old or older, who were generally healthy and without major cognitive impairment at enrollment.
The participants who engaged in literacy activities and active mental activities had an 11% and 9% lower, respectively, risk of dementia.
To a lesser extent, participating in creative artistic activities, such as crafts, woodwork, and painting or drawing, and in passive mental activities such as reading, watching TV or listening to the radio was also associated with reduced dementia risk, the study found. Creative artistic and passive mental activities both conferred a 7% decrease, according to the study.
“These results suggest that engagement in adult literacy, creative art, and active and passive mental activities may help reduce dementia risk in late life,” the study said.
The people in the study who developed dementia were older, more likely to be men and have lower levels of physical activity and to be in poorer health than individuals without dementia, the study said.
In 2022, there were 55 million individuals worldwide living with dementia, with 10 million new cases emerging annually, the study said. There’s no cure for dementia. As a result, “identifying new strategies to prevent or delay dementia onset among older individuals is a priority,” the study said.
These findings can help inform strategies for dementia prevention later life in terms of modifying daily routines and activities, the study said.
They say that there's no sense in crying over spilled milk. But what do they know? Crying can get you another glass of milk if you do it loud enough. Plus, crying may serve a real physiologic purpose, according to a study published recently in Emotion, meaning the journal and not in an Emo-kind of way.
For the study, three researchers from the University of Queensland (Leah S. Sharman, Genevieve A. Dingle, and Eric J. Vanman) and one from Tilberg University (Ad J. J. M. Vingerhoets) recruited 197 female undergraduate students. They said that they choose all women rather than including men because pilot testing of sad videos had revealed that more women than men cried or at least more women revealed that they were crying. This did not account for the men who cried inside or used some bro-language or high fives to hide the crying.
The research team then showed each of the study participants either a video that are supposed to make them feel sad (sad videos) or a video that was not supposed to elicit any emotion (neutral videos) like something from a documentary or a ted talk. Each video lasted for close to 18 minutes. After the video, the researchers noted whether or not each participant had cried while watching the video. Ultimately, 65 participants watched the neutral video, 71 watched the sad video and cried during it, and 61 watched the sad video and did not cry. Presumably, no one cried during the neutral video. But then again, actor Bryce Dallas Howard was able to cry when Conan O'Brien talked about Home Depot in this Conan clip:
Then, each participant underwent a Cold Pressor Stress Test (CPT), which involved placing the participant's left hand, up to the wrist, in cold 0° to 5°C water. Unless you are the Iceman or Killer Frost, this is supposed to be painful. The research team measured how long each participant could stay in this position until pulling her hand out of the water. During the study, the research team continuously measured each participant's heart rate and respiratory rate and periodically measured cortisol levels from saliva samples. Cortisol is a stress-hormone that's produced by the body.
Also, at four points during the study, participants answered questions from the Positive and Negative Affect Scale short form (PANAS). These questions asked the degree to which the participant was experiencing ten different emotions and to rank each on a five-point scale that ranged from a one (very slightly or not at all) to a five (extremely).
When it came to cortisol levels and how long the participants could keep their hands submerged in the cold water, the study ended up finding not much difference between the neutral video watchers, the sad video non-criers, and the sad video criers. So if you are about to dunk yourself in cold water or take a cold shower, it may not help to cry first.
But here's a difference that the study found. Are you ready? Take a deep breath. The difference was breathing rates. While watching the videos, the non-criers tended to have elevations in their breathing rates, whereas, by contrast, the criers tended to maintain their initial breathing rates. In other words, tearing up could have helped participants better control their breathing rates. This provides further evidence that crying may help you better regulate arousal, serving as an emotional release.
Another interesting finding was that right before crying, participants tended to experience decreases in their heart rates, seemingly in anticipation of the crying. Once the crying began, their heart rates then tended to creep back up but not above where their heart rates had been before everything began. This may be further evidence that crying has a beneficial regulatory effect on your physiology.
So perhaps next time you start crying you can tell people that you are regulating your physiology. You've probably heard of people saying that they had a good cry and feel better after they've let the tears flow. It can be important to find reasonable ways to periodically release your emotions. Otherwise, you may end up bottling everything up like a hot air balloon that can explode when you least expect it.
Moreover, crying can be a way of communicating. It's really the only way that babies can express their needs before they learn how to say things like "why you throwing shade on me," or "I'm not Gucci." Crying can help communicate to others that you need more sympathy, comfort, or help. Of course, this can be misused. You don't want to cry every time your order at a restaurant doesn't come out right. And of course, there is the whole concept of crocodile tears: people crying to get something when they don't really mean it.
Crying can also be a way of communicating with yourself. Even when you cry alone, you may be telling yourself about your own state because, like many people, you could be terrible at memorizing your own emotions and situation. Tears could be your body's way of saying, "hey, take a break," or "something's not right," or "take care of yourself." Tearing up can then be a way of your body literally crying out to you.
Your body is a complex system. Crying can be complex. Your tears can flow when you are very sad, very angry, or even very happy. Better understanding what causes us to cry and what happens as a result could help us better handle our emotions and stress.
Study art abroad through the Entertainment & Arts Management program in Edinburgh, Scotland! The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the world's largest arts festival featuring over 53,000 performances of 3,300 different shows in 300 venues. Students experience and celebrate the different facets of the international arts community and put classroom learning into action by producing their own marketing and public relations stunts to announce different shows and performances during the festival.
The Edinburgh Fringe Intensive is a summer study abroad program and is open to all Drexel students. You will have the opportunity to attend lectures and workshops taught be a variety of experienced professionals in the arts and entertainment industries, and will be exposed to valuable networking opportunities. In addition to attending multiple performing and visual art shows, classes will include day trips to sites around Scotland, like an overnight trip into the Scottish Highlands.
The Edinburgh study abroad program is led by Associate Teaching Professor Brian Moore, who has over 30 years of experience in the entertainment industry.
View the brochure and apply today! Questions? Reach out to Brian Moore.
Fact checked by Sarah Scott
A new study suggests that taking vitamin D supplements may help protect older adults from major cardiovascular events, like heart attacks.
The study is relatively small and researchers and outside medical professionals alike emphasize the need for further research in order to clarify vitamin D's ability to contribute to heart health in this way.
Experts agree that lifestyle factors, like diet and exercise, are still the primary ways individuals can focus on prevention of heart attacks and other cardiovascular-related events.
Taking vitamin D supplements may help reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events (like heart attacks) for older adults, according to a new study.
The trial, which was based out of Australia, assessed 21,315 people who ranged from 60 to 84 years old. They randomly gave one group of 10,662 participants one capsule of 60,000 IU vitamin D, while a placebo was given to 10,653 participants.
The supplements and the placebo were taken orally by participants at the beginning of each month for up to 5 years, with the clinical trial starting in 2014 and concluding in 2020.
Researchers excluded people from the trial with a history of hypercalcemia, or high calcium levels, overactive thyroid, or hyperparathyroidism, kidney stones, osteomalacia, or "soft bones," sarcoidosis, which is an inflammatory disease, or who were already taking more than 500 IU per day of vitamin D supplements.
Study author Rachel Neale, PhD, told Health that there have been plenty of observational studies suggesting that the concentration of 25 hodroxy vitamin D [25(OH)D—the molecule that is measured to determine vitamin D status—in the bloodstream is "inversely associated with health outcomes."
The opposite has been examined less.
While the largest clinical trial of its kind, the researchers acknowledge that the study was relatively small, and more work needs to be done to understand the effectiveness of these kinds of supplements, especially in people who are taking statins or other medications to manage cardiovascular disease.
Neale, who also serves as the deputy coordinator of the Population Health Department at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, noted that the association between vitamin D and cardiovascular health risk may not be causal.
"Randomized controlled trials are needed to determine whether supplementing people with vitamin D would Excellerate health outcomes," she said.
Over the course of the trial, 1,336 of the participants experienced a major cardiovascular event—this was evenly divided between the placebo and vitamin D supplement groups.
The research team found that 6.6% of those in the placebo group and 6% in the supplement group experienced a cardiovascular event during those five years.
Those in the vitamin D supplement group seemed better protected from these heart disease events; this group experienced a rate of major cardiovascular events that was 9% lower compared to what was seen in the placebo group.
This comes out to about 5.8 fewer cardiovascular events per 1,000 participants. The heart attack and coronary rates were 19% and 11% lower, respectively, in the vitamin D group. That being said, the rate of stroke showed no difference between the placebo and supplement groups.
Related: 26 Symptoms of Low Vitamin D You Need to Know About
When asked what is known about vitamin D and its impact on heart health, Boback Ziaeian, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA in the Division of Cardiology, told Health that there are many studies out there on vitamin D "that span basic sciences, observational research, and clinical trials."
That being said, it's only very recently that we've started seeing large randomized trials like this one that focus on vitamin D supplements as a mechanism to prevent cardiovascular disease, cancer, and even dementia.
"These trials have all largely been negative for their primary endpoint design. The latest Australian study is the first large study to suggest a possible benefit and that is very uncertain," said Ziaeian, who is unaffiliated with this clinical trial.
Essentially, more needs to be examined here.
Neale said that there are a number of different potential mechanisms inherent in vitamin D that could be beneficial for your heart.
She mentioned that vitamin D "can influence the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, which influences blood volume and vascular resistance." She also noted that vitamin D can also lower inflammation and "reduce cardiac remodeling."
"People have hyped Vitamin D for a long time, but blood levels are heavily confounded by other lifestyle factors like how much time someone spends outdoors or not having other chronic diseases," Ziaeian said.
"So, overall, there's no good evidence that supplementing people with vitamin D does anything beneficial for their health unless they cannot produce it, such as patients with severe kidney disease."
Ziaeian said that he doesn't believe we will see a future where vitamin D supplementation will be part of a prescription from your doctor.
"Looking at the literature overall, I think it is very unlikely that we would find many benefits for any vitamin supplementation that for vitamins we normally ingest with normal food intake or that our body produces," he said.
Neale said that "uncertainty in the evidence may not ever be completely resolved." She said this leaves medical providers in a "somewhat difficult position" when it comes to prescribing vitamin D supplements, outside of treating vitamin D deficiency.
"I would emphasize that even if our findings do indicate a real effect of vitamin D, it is not a magic bullet," she said. "Diet and exercise will play a much more important role."
Related: 12 Foods That Are Good Sources of Vitamin D
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Read the original article on Health.
BUFFALO, N.Y. – A background in music helps speakers learn a tonal language, such as Mandarin, a new University at Buffalo study suggests.
People with musical training — whether instrumental or vocal — are better at imitating pitch than someone without that training. Understanding pitch structure is critical with tonal languages that rely on inflection to communicate meaning.
Unlike English, where the inflection placed on a single word can alter a word’s pitch in ways that convey emphasis or emotion, altering pitch in a tonal language can change a word’s meaning.
“Both a musical background and a Mandarin language background influences the ability to match pitch,” says Chihiro Honda, a graduate student of psychology in the UB College of Arts and Sciences, and first author of the paper published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. “These findings imply that teachers might want to introduce music as part of their instruction for those trying to acquire a second language.”
This research also speaks to the long-standing debate about whether our brains have separate networks for language and music, according to Peter Pfordresher, PhD, a UB professor of psychology and one of the paper’s co-authors.
“This paper isn’t the final say on that debate, but we seem to have the same network at work for both behaviors,” he says. “We might rely on different features of that network depending on whether we’re in a language or a music situation. If you’re attuned to paying attention to pitch through learning a tonal language or through music, that training is going to help you in either situation.”
The research team recruited 127 participants for the study: Mandarin and English speakers, both with and without a background in music. The researchers created 96 short sentences in each language phrased as both a statement and a question — “The children can’t sleep,” for instance.
The authors then used computer software to create pitch patterns based on the spoken sentences, and then composed short melodies based on the pitch of each syllable. Participants listened to and then vocally reproduced these synthetic pitch patterns and melodies, but never heard the original spoken sentences.
After collecting data, the researchers calculated the differences between target pitch and what participants produced.
“Musicians were more accurate in matching absolute pitch across syllables and musical notes than non-musicians,” says Honda. “Mandarin speakers were more accurate at imitating changes within and across pitch patterns compared to English speakers.