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Conical Intersections: The Seam Space Between the SciencesWhen molecules absorb light and become excited, the energy ultimately has to go somewhere; the energy can be lost by radiation, transferred to another molecule, or lost as heat. To predict how molecules interact with light and other matter, theoretical chemists use calculations based on the Born-Oppenheimer Approximation to numerically estimate energies and other properties of interest. Most processes can be explained within the bounds of the approximation; however, the spontaneous nonadiabatic loss of energy as heat cannot. These non- adiabatic processes are driven by conical intersections and play an important role in many known phenomena. Computationally, conical intersections rise out of the breakdown of the Born- Oppenheimer Approximation and the coupling of electronic and nuclear wavefunctions. Physically, conical intersections represent the seam space of degenerate electronic states on the potential energy surface of a molecule. Metaphorically, conical intersections represent the seam space of the research frontiers in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, and computer science. The present work is a review of the work in, and application of, each respective field related to conical intersections and a benchmarking study of the most viable current methods used to calculate conical intersections.
Fact Checking the Campaign: How Political Reporters Use Twitter to Set the Record Straight (or Not)In a multichannel era of fragmented and contested political communication, both misinformation and fact checking have taken on new significance. The rise of Twitter as a key venue for political journalists would seem to support their fact-checking activities. Through a content analysis of political journalists’ Twitter discourse surrounding the 2012 presidential debates, this study examines the degree to which fact-checking techniques were used on Twitter and the ways in which journalists on Twitter adhered to the practices of either “professional” or “scientific” objectivity—the mode that underlies the fact-checking enterprise—or disregarded objectivity altogether. A typology of tweets indicates that fact checking played a notable but secondary role in journalists’ Twitter discourse. Professional objectivity, especially simple stenography, dominated reporting practices on Twitter, and opinion and commentary were also prevalent. We determine that Twitter is indeed conducive to some elements of fact checking. But taken as a whole, our data suggest that journalists and commentators posted opinionated tweets about the candidates’ claims more often than they fact checked those claims.
Branding (Health) Journalism: Perceptions, practices, and emerging normsObservational studies of journalists on social media platforms suggest that journalists are beginning to develop personal brands using social media. Similar studies suggest that journalists covering specialty areas such as health are more likely to experiment with and adopt new forms of practice that break with the traditional tenets of journalism. Through interviews with such journalists, this study explores the perceptions, practices, and drivers of personal branding among journalists. Findings indicate journalists are squarely focused on branding at the individual level (rather than branding the organizations they work for). Journalists cite technological and cultural changes in the profession as giving rise to personal branding. They also describe the tension they feel between their obligation to uphold the traditional tenets of journalism and their perceived need to incorporate more branding into their practice, especially on social media platforms. The findings indicate that journalists may be changing the fundamental elements of branding in at least one way, exchanging the differentiation between themselves and their content for the mutual sharing and co-creation of content with their colleagues and audience.