Entertainment Technology Center

Entertainment Technology Center / Carnegie Mellon University

A new game developed by Carnegie Mellon University students is helping elementary schoolers understand what life is like for kids on the autism spectrum. 

Ralph Vituccio / Andreas Tapia-Urzua

Once the doors to Cuba opened, a couple of local college professors charged on through.

Ralph Vituccio, an assistant teaching professor at the Entertainment Technology Center (ETC) and an award-winning filmmaker and documentarian, talks about co-hosting and co-presenting an interactive video art installation at the 2015 Havana International Biennale this summer. Joining Vituccio as the only American exhibitor was his colleague Andreas Tapia-Urzua, chair of the Digital Media Department at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. They join us to talk about their trip to Cuba and the reaction their work received.

Fox Valley Institute/Flickr

New research within the field of epigenetics may change the way we look at the treatment of mental health issues in children. Dr. Sharna Olfman, a professor of developmental psychology at Point Park University and a practicing psychologist, has published a new book, The Science and Pseudoscience of Children's Mental Health, that aims to de-mystify how mental health issues are introduced within a child's developing brain.

Dr. Olfman believes that the question is no longer confined to internal factors, but instead an integration of children's changing environments with the processes of early brain development and transferrable genetics.   

"We put tens of thousands of chemical toxins into our environment, kids are sitting in front of screens for hours a day…we’ve radically changed the way kids eat…we’ve really changed every facet of their environment." - Dr. Sharna Olfman

Also on the program, a new application out of the Entertainment Technology Center helps children cope with traumatic experiences through gameplay, and the President of the Senator John Heinz History Center Andy Masich commemorates the 150th anniversary of the day the American Civil War came to an end.