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Junior Karly Siffin to Present Student Dieting Pattern Research at Inquiry 2013
04.17.13 |
Junior psychology major Karly Siffin explored a topic she was interested in outside the boundaries of a classroom — and her hard work didn’t go unnoticed. Siffin is among 170 other Lebanon Valley College students who will present their research at Inquiry 2013.

“I was really interested in the dieting behaviors of both men and women on college campuses,” Siffin said.

From developing a research topic, “Examining Dieting Patterns in Male and Female College Students: Helpful or Harmful?,” to the implementation of research, Siffin used her idea and, with a group of three other students, gathered material independently. To begin her research, Siffin developed a survey to collect data from LVC students about their eating patterns. She then used a Weight Loss Behavior Scale (WLBS) to analyze her data.

“The scale has five subsets to help determine both healthy and unhealthy dieting patterns within the individuals,” Siffin said.

Using her data collection, Siffin’s original hypothesis was confirmed. She wasn’t surprised to learn that, on average, women engaged in unhealthy eating behaviors significantly more than men did. “Scores from both men and women on LVC’s campus fell on the unhealthy side of the scale,” Siffin said, “but women reported higher unhealthy dieting patterns.”

For Siffin, performing a research-based study was an experience that helped her confirm not only that she could work independently, but also that she could be successful in doing so.

“Doing research has really helped me to develop critical thinking skills. This project, especially, was finished completely independently, so I went out on my own and practiced what professionals do in the psychology-world, outside the realm of the stereotypical treatment and diagnosis,” Siffin said. “This has helped me realize that research-based psychology is what I’d like to pursue for a career.”

Siffin has also presented her research at the Eastern Pscyhological Association Conference in New York City.

“I see Inquiry 2013 as a truly great opportunity to showcase not only what I’ve done, but also what they psychology department has taught me,” Siffin said. “The fact that I’ve presented in New York and now I’m going to be presenting it to LVC and the community makes me realize that the educational things I’m doing outside of the classroom really does matter to others.”

“It’s just another opportunity to get more comfortable talking to others about my research,” Siffin said of her participation in Inquiry 2013. Siffin plans to attend graduate school upon her graduation in 2014.

Siffin is among the 170 students selected to present their research at Inquiry 2013 on Thursday, April 18 at 6 p.m. in the Arnold Sports Center Gymnasium. For additional information about the event, visit

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