Honors College Capstones

Permanent URI for this collectionhttps://hdl.handle.net/10877/17056

Browse

Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 977
  • Item
    Catharsis: A Folk Album Inspired by Greek Theatre and Mythology
    (2023-05) Long, Ryan Scott; Mazak, Grant
    Ancient Greek Mythology is one of the longest surviving collections of stories and legends still told today. Folk music is a genre of music that stems from the practice of passing down traditional songs and poems from generation to generation. Though folk has evolved and found itself with more contemporary styling, the inherent storytelling nature is still at its core. Both of these storytelling devices and concepts have always fascinated me, and I felt there to be an opportunity to create a piece of music that allows the two to intersect. So, I have written and recorded a folk album, titled “Catharsis”, that details the downfall and subsequent healing from a modern romantic relationship, as told through the lens of ancient Greek Theatre and Mythology. My composition of this album prompted a great deal of research of several of these Greek myths, allowing me to gain a greater understanding of their story and significance, so I would be able to find parallels to the modern relationship the album describes. In songs like “Athena”, that compares feeling like you’ve lost a best friend after a breakup to Athena and Ares’ conflict in the Trojan War, I dug deep into the mythical history of the war itself — why it started, how it ended, and who all participated — so I could create purposeful allusions and references to the mythical while keeping true to the modern storytelling of the folk music I was writing. On songs like “Anagnorisis”, I instead researched the theatrical concept of an anagnorisis, finding examples of it in many Greek tragedies, and applied this knowledge to the arc of my story, determining what the narrator’s “anagnorisis” in their healing process was. Overall, this process has taught me a lot about my abilities as a writer — I have long been fascinated by songwriters’ abilities to tell stories about themselves while alluding to other famous works, and had never been successful. However, upon my extensive research, I was able to build a strong foundation of knowledge of Greek myths and concepts, and applying it to the story I told became much more attainable and successful.
  • Item
    Pacifica
    (2023-05) Brown, Wallis; Morille, Jordan; Ney, Charles
    As an acting major, this may be groundbreaking information; I’m a Shakespeare fan. I’ve always been astounded how his words can paint these elaborate pictures in my head. The emotionally rich stories, the intensity of the characters, and the puzzle of finding the meaning within the beautiful, tricky language completely fascinates me. I’ve always found it viscerally disheartening to hear people dismissing it as boring, confusing, or intimidating. So, in order to repay my debt to Shakespeare, I decided to write a play- written in poetic iambic pentameter, which would be so expressive, clever, and beautiful that it would cause the entire world to fall in love with Shakespeare. The play would become an instant classic, and I would be lauded as one of the greats. I carried the responsibility with pride, only problem being that it was not fun. If something’s not fun, I tend to let it lie. Luckily, a meeting with a fellow artist and friend caused a breakthrough! Not every piece of art has to come from the depths of your soul and unlock hidden truths about society and the universe. Entertainment is a perfectly reasonable motive to create something, even if you’re the only one having a good time. I believe it was Shakespeare who said, “The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool”. I began this piece attempting to prematurely rise to Shakespeare’s level of wisdom, but now I figure this play will be a lot more interesting if I instead grab Shakespeare by his funny little collar, and drag him down to my level for a bit. I present to you, the first ever Shakespearean stoner comedy, “Pacifica”.
  • Item
    "Menace to the Men": Policing Women and Girls' Sexuality in World War I Texas, 1900-1920
    (2023-05) Adams, Anh; Pliley, Jessica; LaGrone, Leah
    While the United States sent its men to Europe to fight in World War I, its women and girls faced a very different, yet still dangerous, war at home. Threatened by the spread of venereal disease to U.S. servicemen, the federal government implemented a program to repress prostitution by institutionalizing women suspected of promiscuity. The premise of this program, known as the American Plan, was that women’s bodies were inherently sexually deviant, and therefore morally and physically dangerous to the nation’s fighting men. Simply by taking up space, women transformed into the enemy on the home front. This was especially true in Texas, where the already existing, highly visible connections between prostitution and the military enabled further mobilization to abolish prostitution—both by the state and local reform organizations—in the name of national security. What resulted, however, was a strengthening of a detrimental campaign to police, incarcerate, and control women’s bodies. In this time, thousands of women were institutionalized and forced to sacrifice their freedom and bodily autonomy as they became subject to mandatory venereal disease exams. Under the expanding power of the state, any woman, but especially poor women and women of color, could be stripped of her autonomy regardless of her exam results. Through the extensive reach and influence of the American Plan, American women and girls reckoned with issues of war, the spaces they called home, and the freedoms stolen from them in the name of American success.
  • Item
    Comparison of Urbanization Effects on Life History Traits in Gambusia Affinis
    (2023-05) Edgar, Emily; Gabor, Caitlin R.; Irwin, Kyndal
    Impervious surfaces associated with urban development increase the flow of rainwater run-off entering streams that drain urban catchments and drive urban stream syndrome. Urban stream syndrome is the physical and ecological degradation of urban streams. Streams suffering from urban stream syndrome are generally more homogenous with lower levels of habitat structure due to scouring. We define environmental complexity as the degree of variation in stream habitat structure with low variability equating to low environmental complexity. More scoured streams likely have less resources and this could affect life history tradeoffs in fish. We investigated the relationship between environmental complexity and life history traits of the western mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis. Western mosquitofish are urban-tolerant and livebearing species of fish that persist in a wide range of environmental conditions. I examined the fecundity (eggs and embryo), reproductive allotment (egg and embryo mass), and reproductive tradeoff in adult female G. affinis from six different stream populations that vary from high, medium, and low environmental complexity (Pyke GH, 2005). I measured the number of unfertilized gametes and the embryos (and their varying stage of development) in relation to female size and mass. I also measured dried brood mass to explore potential energy tradeoffs in fecundity, and reproductive allotment. I predicted that there would be greater reproductive tradeoff in areas with low environmental complexity due to more predicted limited resources. Specifically, I predicted that fecundity and reproductive allotment would be lower in areas with low environmental complexity. In contrast to our predictions, the fish had higher fecundity in low complexity habitats than in medium and high. Also, the fish had the greatest reproductive allocation in low complexity habitats than in medium and high complexity habitats. I found no significant trade-off across complexity, but high environmental complexity appears to have the highest fecundity and individual propagule mass when compared to low and medium complexity. This suggests that female mosquitofish in these populations are tolerant of a variety of conditions and that might explain their widespread dispersal. But it may account for the loss of intolerant species. With a greater understanding of anthropogenic effects on aquatic vertebrates, we can better understand how to conserve the natural habitat of these ecosystems.
  • Item
    Shadows on a Wall
    (2023-05) Flowers, Gwendolyn; Morille, Jordan
    My Capstone project is the script of a play that I have written. The play follows a university student named Madison who moves away from his sick mother to go to college and find somewhere that he belongs. Over the course of his first semester, strange things start to happen to and around Madison that make him question what is real and what isn’t. He tries to find comfort in the people around him, (his philosophy professor, roommate, and mother), but soon finds that they may know more than they let on. The play culminates with Madison confronting his existence as a piece of entertainment for an audience as he decides to break free of his assigned fate and create a new life for himself in the real world. My goal was to create a world and set of characters that becomes increasingly immersive to the audience as the main character’s mental state seemingly decreases, thereby making the audience more and more invested in the play’s events. Through this I hoped to explore the relationships between audience, character, and creators. I hope to make the audience think about our connection to the characters and worlds we create and whether they can grow past our initial plans for them. What independence does a written or performed character hold outside of what they are written for? Are we to fictional characters what any hypothetical gods are to us? What are the ethics of putting characters through horrific things for entertainment purposes, and why do we love watching it so much?
  • Item
    Can a Period of Wakeful Rest Facilitate Memory Consolidation?
    (2022-12) Biggs Rodriguez, Omalys; Westerberg, Carmen
    Memory consolidation, turning memories from a fragile to a more permanent state, is facilitated during overnight sleep and 90-minute naps. Declarative memory consolidation occurs when memories are reactivated in such a way that, over time, the hippocampus is no longer necessary to bind together aspects of memories in the cerebral cortex because the various areas of the cortex have formed connections with each other. Electroencephalographic (EEG) signals during periods of eyes-closed relaxation lasting between 10 and 20 minutes, wakeful rest, have been shown to be more similar to EEG signals during sleep than EEG signals when a person is awake and aroused. Additionally, wakeful rest has been found in some, but not all, studies to facilitate memory consolidation more efficiently when compared to a wake group. However, differences in testing format (free recall versus multiple choice) could account for the differential results across studies. A study in the Texas State University Cognitive Neuroscience Lab will be conducted to investigate whether a period of wakeful rest can facilitate memory consolidation more efficiently than a wake group. Participants will fill out sleep questionnaires, and undergo two back-to-back sessions in which they will watch a video and take a memory test immediately following the video and after a 15-minute period of wakeful rest or distractor task while EEG is recorded. Most importantly, half of the subjects will have their memory tested via free recall and the other half of the subjects will receive 20-question multiple choice tests. Following each session, participants will be asked to report how often their mind “wandered” during the period of wakeful rest or completing a distractor task to assess the proportion of time they spent thinking inwardly. The results will elucidate whether a period of wakeful rest facilitates memory consolidation and whether this facilitation depends on memory test format. In addition, the dependence on inward thinking for improved memory and associated EEG signals will be examined.
  • Item
    Examining the Role of Circumcision on Peoples' Attitudes, Beliefs, and Intentions Towards Circumcision
    (2022-12) Nares, Evan; Balzarini, Rhonda
    Over the past decade, there has been a decline in medical support of male circumcision in the US. However, despite increased skepticism over the medical benefits, some people continue to circumcise their children. Given the shifts in American culture surrounding sex and sexuality in the last several decades, it is important to understand what might be influencing some of the shifts in sexual attitudes and beliefs, and if these shifts in culture influence attitudes and beliefs about circumcision. The current research (N = 186) sought to understand whether people’s reports of sex positivity—the degree to which their beliefs align with an ideology that promotes respect for personal autonomy regarding gender and sexuality—were associated with their attitudes, beliefs, and intentions towards circumcision. In contrast to our predictions, results showed no significant correlation between sex positivity and attitudes, beliefs, and intentions towards circumcision scores. Indeed, according to this study, sex positivity is not associated with people’s beliefs or attitudes towards circumcision, though people’s education and religious affiliation did seem to have an influence. This research sheds light on some of the factors that might influence people’s support for circumcision or intentions to circumcise their own children. This study’s sample was extremely high in sex positivity, which may indicate self-selection bias limiting the ability to detect a correlation. Future research should make efforts to recruit a larger, more diverse sample, and to further explore the effects of religion and higher education on attitudes, beliefs, and intentions towards circumcision.
  • Item
    Cybersecurity in the Undergraduate Business Core Curriculum
    (2022-12) Moffett, Nia; Conn, C.; Moffitt, Kathy
    This thesis explores the need for cybersecurity education in the undergraduate business core curriculum. Given the frequency and significant economic costs, on a global basis, of cybersecurity attacks this topic should be taught to all college students, particularly business majors. Based on primary research and review of the catalogs of Texas State’s peer institutions, along with McCoy College of Business, cybersecurity is not a requirement in the undergraduate business core curriculum. As a result, during college and after graduation, students do not know how to protect their personal data and valuable data of their employers. With cyber-attacks being a threat to businesses, governments, and other entities around the globe, it is essential for business graduates to be knowledgeable about the importance of cybersecurity so they can protect their future place of employment and themselves from dangerous cyber-attacks.
  • Item
    Police Cadet Perceptions of Mindfulness Program Implementation
    (2022-12) Edwards, Brienz; Bowman, Scott
    In a mid-sized southern city, a consulting firm was hired to assess police training practices with the goal of reducing inequities in policing outcomes. From this recommendation, Mindfulness and Resilience training hours were added to the cadet training schedule. Previous research has demonstrated correlations between occupational stress and policing (Bukhtiyarov et al., 2016, Christopher et al., 2016, Greco & Fischetti, 2018, Hartley et al., 2011, IACP, 2022). Mindfulness, by increasing a practitioner’s ability to regulate and recover from their own physiological responses to stress, increases police officer resilience. The cadet class received four hours of Mindfulness and Resilience training in addition to the TCOLE-mandatory Fitness, Wellness, and Stress Management course. Several external instructors were brought in to emphasize specific wellness tools. This study sought to determine which mindfulness practices were most useful to cadets and how much Academy-sponsored practice time they felt was warranted. Cadets were surveyed during week twenty of their 34-week Academy. Results indicated that instead of introducing mindfulness as an entirely new concept, training hours can be best spent on teaching mindfulness specifically within the context of policing.
  • Item
    Driving Bessie
    (2022-12) Clagett, Cheyanne; Morille, Jordan
    In this screenplay, jaded solar panel salesman Darryl Nelson struggles to balance the demands of his family’s business and his new friendship with farmer Bud Williams. Convinced he can please both sides, Darryl travels out to Bud’s farm in the Hill Country to get away from Douglas, his older brother and boss, and to see Bud’s way of life. There, he endures the mishaps and joys of life on a farm and questions whether he can build a new, richer life for himself.
  • Item
    Creativity in Art Education: A Documentary
    (2023-12) Yoo, Gina; Summers, Emily J.; Fong, Carlton
    This documentary plus its accompanying written script provides ocular evidence to creativity in art, both in and beyond the classroom. Society—especially its students—need examples of visual expression, in part through art within school contexts. I explore how art teachers offer fun alongside policy constraints. Through this documentary I explore how educators, parents, and art in public spaces and student portfolios inspires and affirms community, connection, and individual points-of-view. I conducted interviews with parents and art teachers, alongside capturing public and student-created art.
  • Item
    Targeting iNAMPT to Break the Obesity-Associated Liver Cancer Link: An In Vitro and In Vivo Approach
    (2023-12) Thornton, Kelly Rene; Salcedo-Price, Ramona
    Background: Studies have shown that obesity is linked to liver cancer through metabolic mechanisms. Obesity can promote tumor growth through metabolic impairment, decreased lipid metabolism, and the interference of energy balance in the liver. NAMPT is an enzyme expressed in the liver and is involved in the progression of tumors in obesogenic environments. iNAMPT is known to be the rate-limiting enzyme in the synthesis of NAD, an essential coenzyme involved in ATP synthesis which promotes a pro-growth environment in the context of obesity. Because iNAMPT and cellular energetics, a hallmark of cancer, plays an important role in liver cancer progression, it has become a target for therapies focused on inhibiting its behavior in cancer cells. The objective of this study was to determine the contribution of NAD biosynthesis in obesity-induced liver cancer progression. Methods: Cell studies were conducted with serum from mice randomized to a diet-induced obesity (OB) or control chow (CR) + FK866 (iNAMPT inhibitor) in SNU, HepG2 human liver cancer cells and Hepa 1-6 murine cells. Analysis of proteins pAkt and pERK was performed by immunoblot. Proliferation, ROS, cytotoxicity, and invasion were also measured in liver cancer cells. For the mouse model, C57/BL mice were randomized to OB chow or CR chow. At 21 weeks of age, mice were injected subcutaneously with Hepa 1-6 liver cancer cells. At 23 weeks, mice received an I.P. injection of FK8666 (30 mg/kg) for 2 weeks. Tumor and mouse weights were measured. Results: Cells exposed to OB sera increased proliferation, LDH secretion, ROS, invasion. FK866 decreased proliferation, LDH secretion, ROS, and invasion in all liver cancer cells. Cells exposed to NW sera and OB + FK866 resulted in more LDH suggesting increased apoptosis compared to OB sera. OB sera increased phosphorylation of Akt which was suppressed by FK866 compared to OB. In liver cancer cells, physiological and cellular signaling were differentially affected when inhibiting NAD biosynthesis in an in vitro model of obesity and liver cancer. In vivo, OB mice weighed significantly more than mice fed a control diet. In addition, 66% of OB mice developed tumors compared to 16% in CR mice. Impact: Identifying pre-clinical strategies to reverse the impact of obesity on liver cancer progression is important due to the strongly increased risk of liver cancer and its poor prognosis. Future translation research studies will build from this pre-clinical foundational research.
  • Item
    Arms Control and Deterrence Theory in the Nuclear Policy of Global Powers
    (2023-12) Acree, Mackenzie; Doyle, Thomas; Popescu, Ionut
    This research project explores the relationship between deterrence theory and arms control in the nuclear policies of the United States, Russia, and China. The centrality of nuclear deterrence in defense policy negates the possibility of nuclear disarmament. Within the current nuclear order, mutual deterrence dynamics are modulated by arms control agreements which promote cooperation between nuclear weapon states (NWS) on limiting their strategic weapons and preventing nuclear conflict. The three NWS relevant to this study hold diverse and sometimes conflicting strategic aims. While American nuclear policy is outwardly based on deterrence theory, it often seeks to undermine the effects of mutual deterrence in order to further its own national interests. The American nuclear umbrella presents a specific strategic challenge as North Atlantic treaty Organization (NATO) allies have faced increasing revisionist aggression from Russia. Russia has leveraged its coercive capacity in the illegal invasion of Ukraine and suspension of a key arms control treaty, the New Strategic Arms Reduction treaty (New START), which have disrupted the status quo nuclear order. I argue that this presents the greatest current threat to stability. Our European adversary’s recent actions have also complicated the American relationship with China, the world’s fastest growing NWS. Differences in strategic thinking between American and Chinese leaders must be understood by both sides in order to effectively cooperate on nuclear security concerns. I put forth that bilateral Sino-American arms control talks may be the best avenue for maintaining the balance of power and preventing nuclear use. I further argue that a condition of minimal nuclear deterrence is our best bet for maintaining that norm of non-use. This transition would allow for continued mutual deterrence while increasing the cost of first use and thus reducing the likelihood of both accidental and intentional nuclear use.
  • Item
    Juror Evaluation of Eyewitness Evidence
    (2023-12) Lee, Kara Mae; Jones, Angela M.
    Since 1989, there have been 935 exonerations due in part to mistaken identification of eyewitnesses. The vast majority (94%) of these cases came from jury trials. These statistics suggest jurors lack understanding of what affects eyewitness’ memories and decisions. The current study assessed general knowledge of eyewitness procedures as well as mock jurors' evaluation of a hypothetical case that varied in the use of two lineup procedures to secure an identification. We examined mock jurors’ verdict decisions using a 2 (lineup instructions: absent vs. present) x 2 (lineup administration: single-blind vs. double-blind) between-subjects factorial design. We hypothesized that mock jurors would be more likely to convict the defendant when lineup instructions were unbiased, and the lineup was double-blind compared to either biased lineup instructions or single-blind lineups. Results indicated knowledge was lacking for several, but not all interview and lineup procedures. Additionally, mock jurors were not sensitive to lineup practices. Neither lineup instructions nor administration influenced legal judgments. These results suggest jurors need additional education in the form of judicial instructions or expert testimony to aid their evaluations of eyewitness evidence.
  • Item
    Shaping Community: How Intentional Design in Residential Halls Can Influence Community
    (2023-12) Barr, Jackson; Prince, Benjamin
    For many young adults the first year of college marks the first chance to live independently and meet new people with whom they will form a community. A residence hall, formerly known as a dormitory or dorm, is on campus housing designed for this purpose. The experiences they foster, or preclude, are critical to the relationships they build and has the potential to shape long-term expectations and patterns of socialization. The thesis of this research is that the intentional design of residential halls can promote positive socialization and allow residents to build mature relationships with their peers. Review of research on this topic reveals that the spatial configurations of residence halls can impact the type and quality of students’ social relationships. Amenities, like study rooms and shared living spaces, allow students to become involved within their hall’s community, while suite-style rooms and computer rooms, can inhibit community building. Consideration of the role, goals and forms of residential halls requires universities and architects to move beyond efficient housing, to consider the how these incubators of society can contribute to broader goals of liberally educated, capable, and well-adjusted young adults.
  • Item
    Homecoming: A Short Film on Unraveling Identity and Generational Pressures
    (2023-12) Soria, Nicole; Silverstein, Annie
    In this drama short film, "Homecoming," we meet Gabriela, an art student facing the dual challenge of completing a painting of her childhood home for her art final while longing for her parents' asylum and return from Mexico. While Gabriela struggles to capture the essence of her childhood on canvas, an enigmatic presence in a hallway closet consistently disrupts her creative process with haunting knocks that are only audible to her own ear. Each knock torments her inner turmoil of choosing her passion instead of following tradition and longing for her parents' return. In the conclusion, we see that after Gabriela allows herself to fully accept herself and her art, she falls into a dream-like state; waking up to find her finished painting in the very closet that tormented her. Gabriela's painting becomes a metaphor for finding a way to finally piece her fragmented sense of self together in her own way. This film explores the impact of generational pressures and sheds light on the struggles immigrant children face to embrace their identity without guilt.
  • Item
    Beyond the Tournament: Bridging the Gap Between Collegiate Forensics and the Outside World
    (2023-12) Bass, Haley; Miller, Joshua; Paz, Mark
    "Beyond the Tournament” is a podcast series that interviews collegiate forensics competitors—that is, collegiate speech and debate competitors—about the speeches and pieces they competed with during the 2022-2023 academic year. Each episode interviews a unique competitor from universities across the United States, speaking about an individual speech and debate “event.” The format of each episode first explores the nature and rules of the event in question, then interviews a competitor about their experience performing that event, and finally concludes with a recording of the piece itself. Through the podcast medium, this project attempts to examine the gap between the insular speech and debate community as the typical audience of these competitors and a more diverse, outside audience. Though not all speech and debate events are persuasive in nature, all seek to examine a social or political phenomenon and either persuade an audience to shift their perspective or broaden their knowledge base. Because of the inherent demographic similarities among the competitors and judges who traditionally view these events, I ask competitors to examine whether the typical tournament audience can be persuaded or affected by their pieces. Finally, by publicly posting their interviews, I give them access to a more diverse audience typical of the world outside of collegiate forensics and open the door to outside engagement with the speech and debate community.
  • Item
    Impact of Lifestyle, Nutrition, and Stress on Telomere Shortening, Mortality, and Incidence of Age-Associated Diseases in Humans
    (2023-12) Hearn, Kennedy A.; Lewis, L. Kevin
    When human and animal cells divide, they go through the cell cycle to replicate their DNA and ensure that all new cells receive a copy of each chromosome. Most of the chromosomal DNA is replicated accurately and efficiently by large enzyme complexes called DNA polymerase delta and DNA polymerase epsilon. A problem arises, however, with DNA replication at the ends of chromosomes in regions called telomeres. Telomeres are short in comparison to the full length of a chromosome and act as protective caps at the ends to prevent degradation. The two major DNA polymerases cannot replicate the ends completely and small numbers of base-pairs are lost from the telomeres with each replication cycle. Such ends must be replicated by a specialized DNA polymerase called telomerase. Most human cells stop producing telomerase during embryonic development and the telomeres subsequently get shorter over time. The rate of telomere shortening varies among individuals and evidence suggests that people with shorter telomeres have increased vulnerability to age-associated diseases such as heart disease, cancer and other ailments. Rates of telomere shortening are influenced by several factors. These influences include nutrition, psychological factors, lifestyle/behavioral choices, plus other predetermined factors like biological sex and genetics. In the current study the medical literature related to telomere shortening and human health has been comprehensively reviewed and the results summarized.
  • Item
    Anxiety in the General Population vs. Athletes: Differential Causes and Treatments
    (2023-12) Hewig, Carley; Osborne, Randall
    Anxiety is the intense, excessive, and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations and is often accompanied by fast heart rate, sweating, and feelings of tiredness. Everyone will experience anxiety sometime in their life, some people more than others. In today’s world, one important group of people that tends to suffer from anxiety is athletes. People tend to idolize them and put pressure on them to perform their absolute best. But at what cost? This research compares causes of anxiety in the general population versus athletes. Research shows that most anxiety in the general population is caused by things like sleep deprivation, being overcaffeinated, or sitting down for too long. On the other hand, athletes’ anxiety mainly stems from fear of failure, public scrutiny, impractical expectations, and so much more. This research also addresses the most commonly used techniques for treating anxiety in athletes versus the general public. Although some of these techniques can work for both – such as breathing techniques, positive self-talk, and muscle relaxation – there are treatments that are more specific for the primary causes of anxiety in athletes. Furthermore, this work explores the differences in causes of anxiety in individual versus team sport athletes and considers whether the treatment techniques differ. Lastly, to understand how this relates to athletes today, a case study is proposed, and a treatment plan is developed that works best for this athlete.
  • Item
    Phantom Limb Pain: The Pain of a Missing Limb
    (2023-12) Klovenski, Madison; Etherton, Joseph; Carter, Teri
    Phantom limb pain is the perception of pain in a limb that has been amputated; this sensation has been described as cramping, burning, stabbing, crushing, etc. which can be an excruciating pain lasting years. The feeling of pain in a region of the body that is no longer present is a phenomenon that does not have one single explanation or treatment, yet a variety of theories and treatment options exist. The term Phantom Limb Pain was first coined after the Civil War because of the large number of veterans with amputations, yet this pain existed long before the medical terminology. Over 200 million Americans are living with an amputation; 85% of amputees experience PLP yet each individual has different experiences. Amputations can be the by-product of tragic motor vehicle or war accidents and also due to planned surgeries resulting from diabetes or vascular disease. There is a wide range of theories that describe PLP, most involving the central nervous system. These include cortical remapping which is brain regions taking over portions of the brain that were once controlled by the amputated limb, somatosensory plasticity which is the brain's ability to alter over time, and nerve theories such as Dorsal Root Ganglion Abnormal Activity. Additionally, there has been much more research on different types of treatment that can alleviate phantom pain such as mirror therapy, virtual reality, and reconstruction surgeries. In my capstone, I will go into detail to describe the sensation and impact of PLP as well as describe current theories and treatments. It is important for amputees and the public to understand what phantom limb pain is so that more research is done to find additional treatment options to lessen this life-altering chronic pain.