Choir director aims to find out if singing spreads COVID-19

U of A vocal acoustics expert recruiting singers and infectious disease specialists to assess risk of transmission

Choir director aims to find out if singing spreads COVID-19The director of the University of Alberta’s Chorale Saint-Jean is doing research to determine the risk of transmitting COVID-19 through singing. Skeptical of what he calls the “anecdotal hysteria” about the dangers of choral singing, Laurier Fagnan points to a high-profile case of infection among members of a Washington State choir in early March, before social distancing and other…

Too much tech use can cut into couple time, study shows

Even small digital distractions can add up to dissatisfaction with romantic relationships, say researchers

Too much tech use can cut into couple time, study showsSneaking peeks at your phone or doodling on your tablet, even just a little bit, may hurt your couple time, according to a new collaborative study involving the University of Alberta. Although technology use is common during shared time, on days when people and their romantic partners used it more feelings about leisure time and…

Why body language matters more than we may notice

From helping Parkinson’s patients to creating more realistic video game characters, paying attention to gestures can improve how we communicate, according to U of A linguist

Why body language matters more than we may noticeA shrug of the shoulders, a raised eyebrow or two hands weighing alternatives. Physical gestures may be intrinsically linked to human expression, but linguistics hasn’t always recognized their vital role in producing meaning, seeing them as mere adornments to speech. Linguist Jennifer Hinnell is determined to change that and she’s off to a brilliant start. Her…

What you need to know about menopause

More awareness, education needed to help prevent women with severe symptoms from suffering needlessly, say experts

What you need to know about menopauseHot flashes, mood swings, “brain fog,” joint pain, insomnia and weight gain. Most women in their late 40s and 50s will immediately recognize the symptoms of menopause. While up to 80 per cent of menopausal women will experience some symptoms, up to 25 per cent will suffer enough to seek medical relief. And yet, not only are…

Obesity guidelines give new perspective on being overweight

Obesity guidelines give new perspective on being overweightPeople living with obesity have a powerful new tool to help them – and their doctors – better understand the condition, thanks to updated Canadian guidelines. The Canadian Adult Obesity Clinical Practice Guidelines view the condition through a new lens that doesn’t make stereotyped assumptions about being heavy, said project co-author Arya Sharma, past chair in obesity research and…

Longer bereavement leave needed for employees: study

Outdated Canadian labour laws need to reflect new evidence on how deeply grief affects us, says U of A researcher

Longer bereavement leave needed for employees: studyIt takes months, even years, to recover from the grief of losing a loved one, and Canadian legislation and workplaces need to start recognizing that, says a University of Alberta researcher. While many workplaces offer three days of paid or unpaid bereavement leave, it’s based on an outdated 1967 federal law in the Canada Labour Code…

How to handle digital overload

Being online all the time can be exhausting, say U of A experts who offer tips for anyone working or learning from home

How to handle digital overloadIt didn’t take long for Rylee Sargeant to start feeling tired and headachy after she, like everyone else, was forced to work remotely when the pandemic struck in March. “Lethargic is how I’d describe it,” said the 21-year-old University of Alberta kinesiology student. She’s taking courses now and working an online summer job, and that…

What you need to know about cancer

Cancer isn’t one disease with one cure, but researchers have made significant progress in understanding and treating it

What you need to know about cancerNearly half of Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer at some point during their lifetimes, according to the Canadian Cancer Society, and all of us will likely be affected by it. But what do we really know about the disease? Cancer is not one disease with one solution, said David Eisenstat, department chair and professor in…

Researchers reveal patterns of sexual abuse in religious settings

Sociologists expose how perpetrators use trust, faith and authority to groom victims and keep abuse secret

Researchers reveal patterns of sexual abuse in religious settingsA recent literature review by a University of Alberta cult expert and his former graduate student paints a startling and consistent picture of institutional secrecy and widespread protection of those who abuse children in religious institutions “in ways that often differ from forms of manipulation in secular settings.” It’s the first comprehensive study exposing patterns of sexual…

New guidelines help people with dementia stay safe if lost

U of A researchers tap into experiences and ideas of people living with dementia to fill public information gap

New guidelines help people with dementia stay safe if lostResearchers have developed a new guideline to help people with dementia stay safe if they get lost, based partly on the experiences of those who are living with the condition. “By including people with dementia, it tells them they can be active agents in their own care and they can keep themselves safe,” said lead…
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