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More tourism may not always be better

Carter Hunt's research on the social and environmental aspects of tourism has taken him all over the world. His research spotlights one key fact: More tourism is not always better. Increasing the number of visitors has generated profits for travel companies – particularly the cruise ship industry – but it has not always benefited local communities and environments where tourism occurs.

Fortunately, once people are aware of the often surprising ways in which their trips impact local people and places, it becomes easy to ensure that their travel has more positive consequences for the destinations they visit.

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Researchers work together to improve communication-aiding technologies

Researchers in the College of Health and Human Development find hand choice can strain the mind when using Augmentative and Alternative Communication.

Hormones may affect girls’ interests, but not their gender identity or playmates

Prenatal exposure to androgens is not associated with girls spending more or less time with other girls, but was associated with an increased interest in activities that have traditionally been thought of as masculine, according to Penn State researchers, who say it supports the idea that gender development is complex and does not solely rely on either biological or social factors.

Moms who co-sleep beyond six months may feel more depressed, judged

Moms who continue to co-sleep — by sharing either a room or bed — with their infants past six months were more likely to feel depressed, worried about their babies’ sleep and think their decisions were being criticized, according to Penn State researchers.

Blacks, Hispanics less likely to drink tap water, more likely to buy bottled

Black and Hispanic U.S. adults are half as likely as whites to drink tap water and more than twice as likely to drink bottled water, according to a recent Penn State analysis. The findings support past research that indicates that minorities and more vulnerable populations have a higher distrust of tap water in America, and that those who instead consume bottled water are at greater risk of health issues and financial burdens.

Hormones may affect girls’ interests, but not their gender identity or playmates

Prenatal exposure to androgens is not associated with girls spending more or less time with other girls, but was associated with an increased interest in activities that have traditionally been thought of as masculine, according to Penn State researchers, who say it supports the idea that gender development is complex and does not solely rely on either biological or social factors.

Scientists determine standards for gauging cost, benefits of prevention programs

Max Crowley, assistant professor of human development and family studies, co-chaired a taskforce of leading experts in prevention science, public finance and economics with the goal of identifying best practices to understand the economic impact of investments in prevention. The taskforce came up with standards based on their research, which was released by the Society for Prevention Research.

Researcher to study the effect of exercise on breast cancer metastases

Connie Rogers, associate professor of nutrition and physiology in the Department of Nutritional Sciences, has been awarded a scientific research grant by the American Institute for Cancer Research. Rogers' project will examine the effects of exercise and weight maintenance in breast cancer progression and metastases.

Learning to make healthy choices can counter the effects of large portions

Penn State researchers have found that after going through a training program designed to help people control portion sizes, participants still ate larger portions but chose healthier foods, lowering their calorie intake.

Penn State researchers developing startup to help people in addiction recovery

A group of Penn State researchers is developing a system — WearIT — utilizing wearable devices as tools to help individuals battle addiction. WearIT is a scientific framework that uses a wearable device — such as a Fitbit or Apple watch — along with a smartphone and a web server to detect indicators of stress and/or anxiety in the person wearing the device.

New study may lead to changes in treatment of ALS patients

A Penn State study brings researchers one step closer to better understanding and treating dysarthria, a type of motor speech disorder, in people with ALS. Dysarthria can cause slurred speech, slowed speech, abnormal pitch and rhythm, changes in voice quality and limited tongue, lip or jaw movement, according to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

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