Biomedical Research Series: Dr. Jill Tall

Dr. Jill Tall

Within the Department of Biological Sciences at Youngstown State University, there are many areas of research being explored by faculty and students alike. In a monthly series, we will highlight faculty research that covers various aspects of biomedical efforts from DNA to bacteria, fungi, and more.

Dr. Jill Tall is an associate professor of Biological Sciences at YSU. She earned her BS degree in biomedical science from Arizona State University and her PhD from Kent State University and NEOMED in biomedical science, with focus on neurobiology and pharmacology. Dr. Tall also completed a post-doctoral program at John Hopkins in anesthesiology researching how our diet effects bodily pain.

After her schooling, Dr. Tall brought her pain research with her to YSU until she paused her research in 2010 to have her children. She resumed research in 2012 where she twisted her research into a clinical perspective.

Through the course of her research at YSU, Dr. Tall has experimented with emergency room patient satisfaction. With the help of her students, Dr. Tall set up a research study that surveyed a group of patients as they came into the emergency room, asking questions like why they thought they were there, what they wanted the doctor to know, and what medication or treatment they thought they might need. Her research study was primarily designed to address the issues of emergency room backup.

“Anything that can help decrease the time in the emergency room is a hot topic for researchers,” said Dr. Tall.

The results of her study found that there were no significant differences between patients who were surveyed and patients who were not.

“This indicates that the emergency room gridlock is not specifically from the staff and physicians. Perhaps other hospital-related issues, like backup in the lab, radiology, and time to get a patient a bed on a floor, are slowing the process.,” said Dr. Tall.

However, the results suggested that all patients were fairly satisfied with their experiences at the emergency room regardless of the prior survey.

Dr. Tall has also developed a clinical research certificate program at YSU. In Spring 2017, there were 5 students who graduated with the completion of her certificate program. This program follows a student’s regular BS degree and allows undergraduates to get exposure in clinical research. The program is also included on each student’s transcript, setting them apart in the competitive job field.

The program consists of an inexpensive phone study, followed by research and data collection from patients at a hospital. This year, students will be receiving data from St. Elizabeth patients.

“Students truly get the complete research study experience,” said Dr. Tall.

There were two students in last year’s program that really stood out to Dr. Tall. Students Isaac Pierce, a medical school attendee at Ohio University and Andrew Whipkey, a student at NEOMED impressed Dr. Tall immensely.

“They always went above and beyond with any task I had for them,” said Dr. Tall. “They genuinely enjoyed the program and they always took the lead.”

This semester, Dr. Tall currently has 9 undergraduate students that assist her. For her research expenses, Dr. Tall received a grant from Ohio University Heritage of Osteopathic Medicine. She obtained this grant from a study she did on the effects of emergency transportation backboards.

In the future, Dr. Tall wants to create more connections with other medical organizations. She also wants to attract other science majors to her certificate program because, regardless of their major, they will receive hands-on experiences that will set them apart from their competition. She feels that the best part about YSU is the research opportunities that are present for students as opposed to bigger universities.

To contact Dr. Tall about her research or her certificate program, email her at jmtall@ysu.edu or visit her office in Ward Beecher, Room 4026.