Past Issues

Past Issue Volume 1 June 2023

Volume 1: June 2023

EDITORIAL: EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING: THE LEARNER-CENTRIC PEDAGOGY

Breanna J. Naegeli, PhD 

Grand Canyon University, Editor-in-Chief


This summer, we eagerly present the inaugural issue of the highly anticipated, Canyon Journal of  Undergraduate Research (CJUR). We are pleased to introduce the editorial staff that has diligently collaborated to produce the launch of this novel journal at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona: Scott Greenberger, EdD, Executive Editor, Breanna Naegeli, PhD, Editor-in-Chief, Jenny Kuban, Managing Editor, Ramesh Velupillaimani, PhD, Neal Adam, PhD, and Katalina Inzunza Herrera as Editorial Board Members, and Kelly Maguire, EdD and Sandi van Lieu as Copy Editors. We are sincerely grateful for the dedication and collaborative efforts of this editorial staff, and anxiously anticipate the growth of CJUR in the future.

Editorial



LITERATURE REVIEW: THE EFFECTS OF MINDFULNESS IN FAITH-BASED EDUCATION

Vanessa J. Alba, Grand Canyon University 

Alexa R. Cherne-Evans, Grand Canyon University

Dominick A. Deintinis, Grand Canyon University

Miranda Granados, Grand Canyon University

Jordyn C. Peterson, Grand Canyon University

Kaitlyn G. Plaster, Grand Canyon University


The practice of mindfulness has proven to be a beneficial cognitive and socioemotional tool for various populations and types of settings. Benefits include reduction of stress, anxiety, and other psychopathological symptoms. Additionally, mindfulness has positive effects on academic performance in the way that it enhances a student’s ability to sustain attention and retain information more efficiently. Literature on the adverse effects of mindfulness, such as retraumatization, delusions, and anxiety, are also mentioned to remove bias. With the growing popularity of mindfulness, this study aims to understand mindfulness within the contexts of education and faith. In hopes of integrating mindfulness practice into a Christian based university, we researched the benefits of mindfulness in educational settings ranging from primary to higher education, as well as mindfulness from the perspective of the Christian faith. Previous studies have demonstrated the advantages of mindfulness for the Christian faith, but they do not incorporate education in their methods. To our knowledge, no conclusive study exists on the intersection between faith, education, and mindfulness. Findings indicate that implementing acts of mindfulness improves attention span, ability to retain information, and cognitive control. 

Abstract and Paper

CHALLENGES OF DI COLLEGE STUDENT-ATHLETES AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRANSITION PROGRAMS

Natalie Osborne, Grand Canyon University




As the transition from high school to college athletics brings academic, social, psychological, and physical challenges, athletes must be prepared by their institution’s athletic program to promote success. There are many factors in producing a successful transition program, but understanding barriers faced by student-athletes is the first step. These barriers may include negative stereotypes, mental health issues, physical burnout, and much more. Analyzing the sufficiency of current programs allows for future developments and improvements to be made while also acknowledging areas for improvement. Research on active programs is limited, but sufficient evidence exists to produce guidelines based on need. Recommendations are provided for coaches and support staff to assist student-athletes in their adjustment to college life, both in athletics and academics. The goal of these programs is not simply to elevate athletic performance during peak years of college, but to build skills in individuals which will translate to all areas of life, including careers after college.

Keywords: transition program, NCAA student-athletes, athlete stigma, athletic academic support, holistic program

Abstract and Paper

FOR THE LEAST OF THESE: A LITERATURE REVIEW OF ARIZONA STATE CHILD MALTREATMENT LAWS AND POLICIES

Lena-May J. Haught, Grand Canyon University




Within the criminal justice system here in Maricopa County, two sets of written sources determine how crimes are addressed. The first is Arizona law, and the second is Maricopa County Protocol. Currently, no comprehensive comparative analysis exists on how different varieties of Family Violence are addressed within Maricopa County by law enforcement. This literature review seeks to fill the gap in the literature by reviewing the 34 relevant Arizona statutes and three relevant Multidisciplinary Protocols which pertain to Family Violence. Child maltreatment serves as the primary focus, and the other two major forms of Family Violence-intimate partner violence and vulnerable adult abuse-provide points of consideration to enable comparative analysis. Differences are highlighted, and their significance for victims of Family Violence in Maricopa County is explained in the context of a thorough, evidence-based definitional framework.

Keywords: Child Maltreatment, Family Violence, Arizona Law, Domestic Violence, Law Enforcement Protocol

Abstract and Paper

PERSON, NOT A PROFIT: THE INTERSECTION BETWEEN COMMERCIALIZED SEXUAL EXPERIENCES AND THE LOSS OF PERSONHOOD

Lauren Baker, Grand Canyon University




Commercialized sex work is a multi-billion-dollar industry, consumable by platforms in person and online. Regardless of the easy accessibility, the impacts of this industry have been debated for decades on whether the industry supports its workers or creates profits from exploitation and non-consensual activities. This literature review will analyze the intersection between commercialized sex work and the loss of personhood. This research will also explore the perpetuation of this industry from an economic and neurological point of view and explore the impacts on the performer and consumer. Referring to previous research on mental health, global sexual violence, the presence of aggression, and stereotypes, this article will re-establish a criterion for personhood as constructed by Kantian ethics. This review aims to compare an established criterion of personhood and the effects of commercialized sex work on performers and consumers to observe the inconsistencies between this industry and honoring inherent human value and dignity.

Abstract and Paper

SUPPORTING OUR MOST VULNERABLE FIRST-GEN STUDENTS: THE ROLE OF IMMIGRATION STATUS IN THE PURSUIT OF HIGHER EDUCATION

Karla Daniela Salazar Chavira, Grand Canyon University




First-generation students have received a great deal of attention from post-secondary institutions. Despite the attempt to help address the barriers faced by this student population, the generalization of the term “first-gen” limits the capacity to grasp how specific identities, such as those pertaining to immigration status, may impact a student’s educational opportunities. Undocumented and DACA students face unique challenges in their pursuit of higher education. They often are more vulnerable to additional barriers and stressors due to the ambiguous nature surrounding immigration and education policy in the United States. Barriers for this subgroup of first-gen students include access to state and federal-based financial aid and in-state tuition rates, including a knowledge barrier in understanding the process of attaining postsecondary education. To help combat these obstacles, I developed programming under three overarching concepts: co-learning, supporting, and providing, which aimed to cultivate strong support systems and resources for student success. Thus, this community engagement profile focuses on how I addressed these barriers as the Immigrant Scholarship Hustle program fellow in my caseload of seven undocumented high school students through three applied methods, including student-parent orientation, educational workshops, and yearlong mentorship.

Keywords: Undocumented students, DACA, First-generation, Higher education, Immigration, Arizona, Mentorship

Abstract and Paper

SOCIAL CAPITAL AND SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS: A RURALITY-FOCUSED COMPARATIVE REVIEW OF HIGHER EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT IN THE UNITED STATES AND COLOMBIA

Hannah Beggs, Grand Canyon University




Cross-cultural examinations in the academic sector are important for developing a comprehensive understanding of the functionality of higher education (HE) and promoting an open-minded, student focused approach to pedagogy. The purpose of this literature review is to compare HE landscapes in the United States (US) and Colombia, emphasizing socioeconomic status (SES) and rurality as a barrier to student success in both countries. A major focus of this review is the relationship between rurality as a component of SES and student success in HE. A discussion follows of approaches to increase rural education attainment in the US and Colombia that support suggestions for future research in the educational field.

Keywords: United States (US); Colombia; higher educational institution (HEI); socioeconomic status (SES); rural student attainment

Abstract and Paper

THE IMPORTANCE OF CLASSICAL LITERATURE IN SECONDARY EDUCATION: A LITERATURE REVIEW

Emily Grant, Grand Canyon University


The inclusion and representation of Classical Literature in secondary education have been a highly

debated topic. Teachers and students struggle to find the value and importance of classical texts and authors in the curriculum. This literature review explores the value of English language arts, how literature fits into that, and how to choose and use the right canonical classical texts. It questions the definition of canon and classic and how classical works that fit these descriptions benefit students. Developing these ideas will help teachers make learning the classics more relevant and applicable for their students. The goal of this review is to synthesize academic concepts regarding not only teaching literature but also Classical Literature as a whole to put the necessity of Classical Literature into perspective and encourage the inclusion of these texts in the secondary English classroom setting.

Keywords: Classical Literature, Secondary Education, English, Canon, Education, Language Arts, Teaching

Abstract and Paper

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FELINES, TOXOPLASMOSIS, AND HUMANS: A LITERATURE REVIEW

Elisabeth J. Drewlo, Grand Canyon University




Toxoplasma gondii is a protozoan that causes the disease known as Toxoplasmosis (Ajioka & Morrissette, 2009). This parasite has been studied extensively since its discovery in 1908. Though it was discovered in the early 1900s and has been studied since it was first observed, its impact on behavior, personality, and the brain had long remained a virtual enigma. It was not until the early 2000s and more recent years that research started getting produced about the parasite and how it alters behavior. Recent studies have shown that Toxoplasma gondii can cause significant damage to brain regions, specifically the amygdala and the cerebral cortex (Ihara et al., 2016). Research findings have shown a correlation between infection with the parasite and aggression, suicidal ideation, intermittent explosive disorder, road rage, neuropsychiatric disorders, altered behavior, and personality changes (Coccaro et al., 2016;  Desmettre, 2020). The purpose of this literature review is to further explore and synthesize the relevant literature to understand the disease and its impact on behavior more thoroughly.

Abstract and Paper

A STUDENT’S DYNAMIC REFLECTION ON INTENSIVE UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH EXPERIENCES

Brian C. Durbin, Grand Canyon University


Reflection is a valuable practice that causes the participating individual to analyze the rational and emotional aspects of an unexpected situation. This practice can be incredibly beneficial in a professional setting as well as an academic setting. To demonstrate this, I will reflect on an intensive, eight-week

summer internship that led to personal growth. The most unexpected result of this internship was the magnitude of knowledge gained over two months. In this manuscript, I propose three distinct theories for this outcome. The first theory postulates that the instruction and encouragement of my research mentor was the primary driver of the internship results. The second theory states that the condensed structure of the program created the optimal conditions for accelerated learning. The third theory cites personal drive and work ethic as the main rationale behind the results. Ultimately, I decided that the main contributing factor to the success of the internship was the mentorship that I received. From a larger perspective, this reflection illustrates the importance of the mentor-student relationship within the academic setting.

Abstract and Paper




GROWING INTO ADDICTION: EXAMINING THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CHILDHOOD ATTACHMENT AND SUBSTANCE USE DISORDER

Ashley Larson, Grand Canyon University

Jeremy Varnadore, Grand Canyon University

Blaze Hulderman, Grand Canyon University

Madison Danielson, Grand Canyon University

Rogelio Garcia Balbuena, Grand Canyon University

Anisa Barbosa, Grand Canyon University 

Isabella Bueno, Grand Canyon University 

Nicole Christerson, Grand Canyon University

Jeremiah Kennel, Grand Canyon University

 Hannah Beggs, Grand Canyon University


This article reviews the literature on attachment theory and substance use disorder (SUD), risk factors, and treatment for SUDs. The purpose of this article is to help foster a deeper understanding of what attachment theory is and what it could offer treatments involving people suffering from SUD. When looking at attachment-based therapies for SUD, little research has been done in a clinical or longitudinal study to confirm short-term attachment-based therapies’ success when treating people suffering from SUD. It is crucial to discover a more comprehensive treatment for SUD to help those in recovery abstain from substances over the long term, avoid relapse, and establish healthier relationships. Exploring this could fuel further longitudinal research and give more populations access to comprehensible care that addresses the underlying factors of addiction instead of merely addictive behaviors.

Keywords: Substance use disorder (SUD), Attachment theory

Abstract and paper




Online Publication Date: June 30, 2023

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Read Current Issue: https://research.gcu.edu/cjur/j24v2i1

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