University of Southern California – Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences is the heart of the University of Southern California. The largest, oldest and most diverse of USC’s 19 schools, USC Dornsife is composed of more than 30 departments and dozens of research centers and institutes. USC Dornsife is home to approximately 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students and more than 750 faculty members with expertise across a spectrum of academic fields.

Our frontline scholars are working to find solutions to society’s toughest challenges by advancing human health, preserving and improving our environment, and strengthening our communities. Together, we are defining scholarship of consequence for the 21st century.

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Displaying 1 - 20 of 107 articles

With giant Saturn hanging in the blackness and sheltering Cassini from the Sun’s blinding glare, the spacecraft viewed the rings as never before. NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

A brief astronomical history of Saturn’s amazing rings

Although the rings of Saturn may look like a permanent fixture of the planet, they are ever-changing. New analyses of the rings reveal how and when they were made, from what and whether they'll last.
Is a bottle of morning milk at night the equivalent of turning on all the lights at bedtime? comzeal images/Shutterstock.com

Human breast milk may help babies tell time via circadian signals from mom

Breast milk contains ingredients in concentrations that change over the course of the day. Researchers think milk is chrononutrition, carrying molecular messages to help set a baby's internal clock.
Mars should be the next destination for humankind. Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock.com

Young Americans deserve a 21st-century Moonshot to Mars

Americans need a new multi-decade Moonshot that will inspire several generations to shoot for the stars and pursue careers in space engineering and exploration.
President Harry S Truman established the initial version of the National Intelligence Council. AP Photo

An invisible government agency produces crucial national security intelligence, but is anyone listening?

The National Intelligence Council works inside government but is little understood outside. Yet it has helped respond to almost all the major foreign policy challenges of the last 40 years.
Dalam aksi langsung ‘Aladdin,’ Mena Massoud membintangi Aladdin, sementara Will Smith berperan sebagai Jin. Daniel Smith/Walt Disney Pictures

Bagaimana film ‘Aladdin’ yang baru melawan stereotip Hollywood

Walau 'Aladdin' 2019 adalah peningkatan besar dari versi 1992, ternyata ia masih mendaur ulang beberapa kiasan lama.
More than 40 lynchings have been documented in Maryland. Shutterstock

Maryland has created a truth commission on lynchings – can it deliver?

The first truth commission to research lynchings has been established in Maryland. It has the potential to educate the public about and support racial reconciliation. But it also faces obstacles.
Droplets rising from the Champagne vent on the ocean floor in the Mariana Islands. Fluids venting from the site contain dissolved carbon dioxide. NOAA Ocean Explorer

Deep sea carbon reservoirs once superheated the Earth – could it happen again?

Thousands of years ago, carbon gases trapped on the seafloor escaped, causing drastic warming that helped end the last ice age. A scientist says climate change could cause this process to repeat.
The Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque, one of the landmarks in Brunei. Brunei recently announced punishing gay sex by stoning offenders to death. AP Photo/Vincent Thian

Harsh punishments under Sharia are modern interpretations of an ancient tradition

Some Islamic nations, including Brunei, have harsh punishments under Sharia. In pre-modern times, Sharia was rarely used as criminal law, and standard of proof for any prosecution was very high.
Pedestrians in Tokyo pass a television screen broadcasting a report on May 4, 2019 that North Korea has fired several unidentified short-range projectiles into the sea off its eastern coast. AP Photo/Koji Sasahara

What geology reveals about North Korea’s nuclear weapons – and what it obscures

North Korea is a major military threat to the US and its Asian allies, but exactly how powerful are its nuclear weapons? An earth scientist explains why it's hard to answer this question.
Mexicans representing indigenous soldiers and the French army, re-enact the battle of Puebla during Cinco de Mayo celebrations in Mexico City. AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo

Americans might love Cinco de Mayo, but few know what they’re celebrating

The holiday honors a 19th-century battle between the French and the Mexican armies that, strangely enough, may have influenced the outcome of the US Civil War.
Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay US$.4.69 billion in July, 2018 because it failed to warn customers that its baby powder contains asbestos. Matt Rourke/AP Photo

Why asbestos litigation won’t go away: Because asbestos won’t go away

Asbestos litigation is the number one source of tort claims in the US, with many people decrying the filing of so many claims. But there's a reason the claims persist. Asbestos isn't going anywhere.
King of a technologically advanced country, Black Panther is a scientific genius. © 2017 – Disney/Marvel Studios

‘Black Panther’ and its science role models inspire more than just movie awards

The film wowed critics and fans. But its hidden power may be black lead characters who are accomplished scientists – just the thing to help inspire future generations to follow in their footsteps.
Barry Jenkins’ ‘If Beale Street Could Talk’ has been nominated for best adapted screenplay at the 91st Academy Awards. Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

Oscars 2019: Beyond the stats, why diversity matters

Numbers alone don't relay the importance of people seeing their own experiences and lives mirrored in popular culture.
Protected time for new families could pay health dividends later. Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

Paid family leave is an investment in public health, not a handout

The transition to parenthood comes with plenty of stress. A psychology researcher suggests that paid family leave could help lift some of the burden – with positive health benefits down the road.
Wall construction along the U.S.-Mexico border in Sunland Park, New Mexico, in 2016. AP/Christian Torres

Immigration: How ancient Rome dealt with the Barbarians at the gate

As Congress and President Trump struggle to devise a coherent immigration policy along the US southern border, there are lessons from ancient history that could prove instructive.

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