Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2021 Dr. Mathur examined the evolutionary history of apicomplexan parasites, which are a large group of important animal parasites that cause malaria and other diseases. Her research used new single-cell techniques and has altered our fundamental understanding of how these parasites evolved. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2021 Dr. Frew studied a new approach for treating a genetic form of frontotemporal dementia. He created a unique repository of dementia patient-derived stem cell lines that will contribute to the study of neurodegeneration for years to come. His research provides support for continued development and preclinical testing of next generation therapeutics. Doctor of Philosophy in Experimental Medicine (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wang examined the security and privacy issues of artificial intelligence, or AI, for digital media. He studied four typical AI models from three dominant computer vision tasks, and designed novel algorithms to expose their threats individually. The findings provide insights for developing more secure and trustworthy artificial intelligence. Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering (PhD)
2021 Dr. Melton studied how developing a sense of wonder in pre-service teachers influenced their ideas about science and science teaching. She found that exposure to wonder-inducing activities shifted the views and values of pre-service teachers towards science both in and out of the classroom and fostered a stronger connection with nature. Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD)
2021 Dr. Dormond studied the understanding and response of counsellors, police and educators to "honour"-related violence and oppression, and found that discourses of othering depict racialized communities as the cause of these acts. He provides insight for collaborative and educational frameworks to challenge the marginalization of racialized peoples. Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Studies (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wang studied mathematical solutions of nonlinear differential equations that model chiral magnetic skyrmions. She provided a rigorous mathematical proof of the existence of skyrmions within the co-rotational symmetric class, and also examined their spectral and dynamical stability. This research contributes to the mathematics of chiral magnetism. Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Becker examined how two Chilean-Canadian heritage language learners were socialized to remember their difficult cultural heritage at home and at their Spanish bilingual elementary school. This study sheds light on the sophisticated navigation of uneven cultural terrain by children in heritage language education contexts generations after exile. Doctor of Philosophy in Language and Literacy Education (PhD)
2021 Dr. Refaeli showed that the podocalyxin gene is crucial for developing and maintaining the filtration barrier in the kidney. His dissertation advanced the hypothesis that gene-dosage is key to regulating the resilience of renal filtration cells to environmental stress, and contributed novel tools to study renal disease and test novel therapies. Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Genetics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Maclean studied the mixing times of organic molecules and water within atmospheric aerosols, and the phase state of these aerosols. This research highlighted that aerosols in Earth's lowest layer of atmosphere, the troposphere, may be solid with long mixing times of organic molecules and water, contrary to typical assumptions in global models. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Dr. Yang studied a special four-stranded nucleic acid structure, called the G-quadruplex, through developing new tools and methods. His collection of works provide evidence for the biological relevance and existence of these structures in living human cells. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2021 Some advanced cancers can be treated with the radioactive isotope called actinium-225, yet current actinium supplies are limited and rely on decades-old material from nuclear weapons. Dr. Robertson used TRIUMF's particle accelerator to develop alternative actinium production methods that could support widespread use of actinium-based therapies. Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Matthey-Doret worked on methods to detect adaptation and showed that deleterious mutations are unlikely to produce signals that can be confounded with beneficial mutations. He also demonstrated that plasticity can evolve in a constant environment. Finally, he created a high performance and flexible software for population genetic simulations. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2021 Dr. Ramezan studied approaches to decentralize communication networks using blockchain. Dr. Ramezan introduced a new approach in designing communication protocols, named software-defined protocols. These studies assist us to connect billions of devices in emerging communication networks. Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering (PhD)
2021 Dr. Pajot studied Edith Wharton's authorship through her magazine publications and their subsequent book revisions, and examined the literary strategies Wharton employed to navigate American literature in the early 20th century. These strategies allowed Wharton to cater to various audiences and to become a commercially-successful and serious author. Doctor of Philosophy in English (PhD)
2021 Dr. Milner studied the importance of education in 19th century Britain, showing the positive effects of publicly provided schools and of child labour legislation on the economic prospects of children. His work demonstrates that targeted public intervention can improve social mobility and insure against economic shocks. Doctor of Philosophy in Economics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Huang's research focused on metabolite analysis using capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry. He established reliable methods to identify and quantify small molecules from biological samples and developed a software tool to facilitate metabolomics data processing. His work contributed to the biomarker discovery for biomedical research. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Dr. Aljalai developed novel signaling schemes to improve the performance of 5G cellular networks and beyond. He invented the Dual Pilot Scheme and its extended version to enhance the estimation of communication channels. His research improves Quality-of-Service by advancing telecommunication systems through practical and economic engineering solutions. Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering (PhD)
2021 Dr. Tortora focused on PPAR-gamma, a protein involved in the biology of bladder cancer. Through gene editing technology, Dr. Tortora identified molecules regulating PPAR-gamma expression and clarified its effects in tumor development, thus potentially opening new possibilities for bladder cancer treatment. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Oncology (PhD)
2021 Dr. Tran studied the microscopic assembly of cellulose nanocrystals derived from sustainable sources. He produced colourful materials ranging from thin films to stretchable elastomers for applications including optical sensors and filters. His findings contribute to the search for and development of sustainable and renewable alternative materials. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Dr. Lefkowich designed and piloted methods for community-based digital storytelling. Using personal reflections, she illustrated how filmmakers and academics normalize, conceal, and defend racism and colonialism as best practices. To disrupt this pattern, she offered story strategies that encourage greater accountability, creativity, and bravery. Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies (PhD)
2021 Dr. Soysa examined the shear behavior of sand-silt mixtures through an extensive experimental research program. He developed a new laboratory criterion to assess the seismic resistance of soils. His study advances the current state of knowledge and understanding of the strength and stiffness of soils. Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering (PhD)
2021 Dr. Ghrear examined the curse of knowledge bias in children's estimates of what others know. She found that this bias is not specific to Western culture, but appears to be universal in humans. She found that younger children are more affected by the bias compared to older children, and identified contexts where the bias does not occur. Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wong studied the maximum possible number of certain mathematical objects when specific restrictions are imposed. Her investigation assists the community in understanding a number of important mathematical problems in extremal combinatorics, a field of study focused on the limits of finite objects. Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wong explored inquiry-based learning experiences of Grade 6 English Language Learners in a technology-enhanced classroom. Her results indicated that students were engaged in innovative learning tasks which encouraged them to move their competencies, such as effective internet use, and knowledge, such as grandparent stories, into the classroom. Doctor of Philosophy in Teaching English as a Second Language (PhD)
2021 Dr. Henriques used mathematical models to study the evolution of cooperative behaviour in nature. He explored how cooperation between organisms affected their ability to adapt to changing environments. His research showed that cooperation can be maintained by interactions between groups of organisms, and that it can promote species diversification. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)