NAU news

Research & Academics

Professor Okim Kang

Making conversation: NAU linguist studies how perceptions of accents affects communication

Kang, who spoke about her research on NPR podcast Code Switch, has found effective communication requires both clear speakers and unbiased, responsive listeners. Continue reading

Andrew Richardson PhenoCam

Warmer temperatures lengthen growing season, increase plants’ vulnerability to frost, NAU researcher finds

Ecologist Andrew Richardson used his camera network to track the counterintuitive effects that climate change has on forests throughout the country. Continue reading

Adair and Kitty in the field

NAU undergrad research examines role of soil fungi in pinyon pine survival during record drought

A team of NAU researchers has been studying the importance of soil fungi to the growth and survival of pinyon pine for more than two decades. Now, an NAU undergrad is serving as the study’s lead author. Continue reading

David van Ness new media art

NAU School of Art launches New Media Art Degree Emphasis

The School of Art at Northern Arizona University has created a New Media Art degree emphasis, which includes applied sciences and creative pursuits to help students explore new ideas. The emphasis will launch in Fall 2019, but classes are available … Continue reading

Colonizing Mars graphic

Think twice before moving to Mars—NAU planetary scientist refutes terraforming in NASA study

Christopher Edwards and his team found that making Mars more like Earth, so astronauts can explore without spacesuits, is unlikely to be successful even with more advanced technology because there's not enough carbon dioxide in Mars' atmosphere. Continue reading

Jason DeBuhn

Lost and found literature: NAU professor translates ancient Manichean papyrus manuscript

Comparative religions professor Jason DeBuhn received grants from NAU, NIH and the Australian Research Council for his translation of the Kephalaia manuscript. Continue reading

Jupiter moons orbits

NAU astronomer on team that discovered 12 new moons of Jupiter

Chad Trujillo is part of the team that is searching for Planet X, a large ice planet that orbits outside of Pluto. They also discovered a dwarf planet in 2014. Continue reading


‘In it for the animals:’ NAU snake researcher talks about myths vs. reality around snakes

Herpetologist Erika Nowak is one of the leading experts on the endangered narrow-headed gartersnakes and was one of the first woman scientists to study rattlesnakes 30 years ago, paving the way for an influx of women since. Continue reading

Man walking on moon

For Moon Day, learn how NAU researchers are advancing our understanding of Earth’s nearest celestial neighbor

Professors Nadine Barlow, Christopher Edwards and Mark Loeffler of the Department of Physics and Astronomy talk about how the Moon provides a control for other planetary bodies. Continue reading

Map of U.S.

Citizen-scientist study results find ticks capable of carrying Lyme disease in 83 new U.S. counties

As part of the study, people across the country sent in more than 16,000 ticks to NAU researchers who tested them for various bacterial infections. Results show ticks capable of carrying Lyme disease are more widespread than originally thought. Continue reading

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Latest Site Activity

NAU's north campus NAU named to 2018 Class of Excellence in Assessment
The designation spotlights institutions that integrate assessment practices across campus, provide evidence of student learning and use results to guide institutional decision-making and improve student performance.
O'Connell records video in studio Video team for hire: NAU department creates educational training videos (for free!)
From demonstrating a system or process to sharing information, required trainings or public service announcements, the videos are intended to streamline messaging for desired audiences while saving NAU department resources and the valuable time of employees.
NAU ITS Bb Learn downtime scheduled for Aug. 16-20 to allow for updates
The outage is a result of a migration to a new, Software-as-a-system environment, which lays groundwork for future Bb Learn updates.

Editor’s Picks

Underneath the lion: Celebrate the Lunar New Year at NAU with traditional lion dance performances
NAU senior Colleen McDowell struggled with high-functioning autism and depression, then she enrolled in PES100, a Chinese Martial Arts course, and became a lion dancer. Enjoy several performances at NAU and throughout town on Feb. 16 to ring in the year of the dog.
growth of microbial taxa Which microbes matter most? NAU scientists develop technique for measuring bacterial growth rates
Ecoss researchers are using technologies developed at NAU to devise a metric for the growth of microbial species in their natural environments.
Scott Anderson studying Norway lake mud NAU paleoecologist discovering secrets of Northern Norway’s history in lake mud
Scott Anderson is part of a team studying thousand-year-old biomarkers preserved in lake bottoms that tell the story of human activity in Lofoten.