Social Science News | University of Illinois

NewsBureauillinois
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign logo

Social Science News

Journalism professor Matthew Ehrlich found hundreds of cat tales, both fun and serious, over 140 years of New York Times history. In the process, he also found evidence of our evolving relationship with animals and reasons to take animal news seriously.

There have been a lot of cats in The New York Times, and not all just for fun

Author: Craig Chamberlain, Social Sciences Editor

Published Date:February 3, 2015

The cute cat video seems to be everywhere online, and it’s become a handy epithet for everything that journalism should not be. So what should we make of the fact that The New York Times, that paragon of journalism, has written a lot about cats over 140 years? That’s the question posed by University of Illinois journalism professor Matthew Ehrlich after compiling hundreds of cat-related tales from the Times’ digital archive.

Published Date: February 3, 2015


Brittany Duff and co-author Sela Sar found that video ads viewed while multitasking were just as effective as when viewed alone, at least for those who process content more holistically. They also found that multitasking probably works best when you're in a good mood.

Ads effective even in the midst of multitasking, studies find

Author: Craig Chamberlain, Social Sciences Editor

Published Date:January 26, 2015

Those video ads playing in the corner of your computer screen, in the midst of your multitasking, may have more impact than you realize. They may be as effective as the ads you’re really watching, such as those during the Super Bowl, says a University of Illinois researcher.

Published Date: January 26, 2015


Special education professor Meghan M. Burke examined parents' use of procedural safeguards in resolving disputes with schools about the education provided to their children with autism.

Family income, child behavior factors in legal disputes about kids with autism

Author: Sharita Forrest, Education Editor

Published Date:January 12, 2015

Families whose children with autism spectrum disorders spend less than 20 percent of their time in mainstream classrooms are nearly twice as likely to resort to litigation, such as filing for due process hearings or mediation, when they disagree with school officials about their children’s education, according to a recent survey of parents.

Published Date: January 12, 2015


Optimists are twice as likely to be in ideal cardiovascular health, according to a new study led by Rosalba Hernandez, a professor of social work at the University of Illinois.

Optimistic people have healthier hearts, study finds

Author: Sharita Forrest, Social Work Editor

Published Date:January 8, 2015

People who have upbeat outlooks on life have significantly better cardiovascular health, suggests a new study that examined associations between optimism and heart health in more than 5,100 adults.

Published Date: January 8, 2015


Travis Dixon found that Muslims and Latinos were significantly overrepresented, and African-Americans largely missing, in crime stories aired over five years on prominent network and cable breaking news programs.

Muslims and Latinos much more prominent in TV crime news than in real-life crime

Author: Craig Chamberlain, Social Sciences Editor

Published Date:January 7, 2015

If it seems as if most terrorists are Muslims and almost all immigrant lawbreakers are Latinos, it may be because you’re watching national TV news – not because those things are true. That’s one implication of a study of five years of network and cable crime news led by University of Illinois communication professor Travis Dixon.

Published Date: January 7, 2015