Poker: Luck of the Draw or Skill? Case Western Reserve Psychologist Places His Bets on Skill

Michael DeDonno

Is it luck of the draw in poker? No, says Michael DeDonno, a doctoral student from Case Western Reserve University. He suggests putting your bets on skills over luck when playing the card game.

DeDonno's findings from two poker-related studies with college students have implications for the gaming industry, and possibly even legal cases that challenge the theory of luck over skills. According to DeDonno, the person who takes home the winnings is likely to pay higher taxes when money is considered earned by luck.

"This article provides empirical evidence that it is skill and not luck," concluded DeDonno from his two studies. Read more.

Case Western Reserve at Forefront of Sexual Conduct Awareness

students working together

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, but Case Western Reserve University's Task Force on Sexual Conduct works to raise campus consciousness about sexual violence throughout the year.

The Task Force on Sexual Conduct has led initiatives that include informational bathroom stall posters, respect cell phone charms, brochures on sexual harassment and consensual relationships, communications to parents of new students and a sexual conduct Web site.

The group, a coalition of university departments and organizations, was formed in May 2005. It advocates for a safe campus, where ethical relationships and mutual respect -- among students, faculty and staff -- are expected and encouraged. Read more.

Campus News

Kelvin Smith Library (KSL) will host a reception in honor of the grand opening of the International News Commons from 2-4 p.m., March 20. Located on the lower level of KSL, this newly furnished area hosts 39 international newspapers, with 30 of these available for same-day publication at KSL. In addition, patrons can watch the SCOLA organization's international news broadcasts. As an extension of the Freedman Center, the international language area also hosts MediaVision Courseware -- if patrons miss a SCOLA broadcast, they can watch it via playback through MediaVision. The reception will feature demonstrations of related services, a chance to talk with Freedman Center staff and librarians, international refreshments and gifts. For details, go to the KSL NewsBlog.

Today is the deadline to submit nominations for the Dorothy M. Pijan Student Leadership Awards. Over 20 different awards are available to recognize outstanding students, advisers and organizations.

The Department of Communication Sciences is scheduled for reaccreditation review at the end of the month. The department is holding a public meeting to solicit comments from students and consumers; the revised meeting date is from 5-5:30 pm., March 27 at the Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center, Room 407. A copy of the Standards for Accreditation and/or the CAA's Policy on Public Comment may be obtained by contacting the Accreditation Office at ASHA Executive Center; 2200 Research Blvd.; Mail Stop 310; Rockville Pike; Rockville, Md.; 20850, by calling ASHA's Action Center at 1-800-498-2071, or by accessing the documents on ASHA's Web site.

For Faculty and Staff

The winners of the Faculty Climate Survey gift card raffle are Patrick Crago, Allen H. and Constance T. Ford Professor and associate dean, biomedical engineering; Mark DeGuire, associate professor in materials science and engineering; Thomas Dick, associate professor of medicine; Timothy Kern, professor of medicine; and Joseph Prahl, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. The organizers thank all of the survey participants, and survey results are forthcoming in a future edition of Case Daily.

For Students


March is National Nutrition Month, and the university's Student Dietetic Association is encouraging fellow students and the campus community to make healthy food choices and engage in physical activity. The group will have a table set up in Nord Hall featuring healthy snacks and nutrition information throughout the month.

The Department of Biology announces the 2008 Michelson-Morley Research Competition in the Biological Sciences, an annual research competition open to all Case Western Reserve undergraduates who have conducted research related to biology. To apply, students must write a paper in the form of a journal article on their biological, biochemical, biopsychological or biomedical research carried out at any institution in 2006 or 2007. Entry forms and information are available at the biology office in DeGrace Hall, Room 203 or online. Deadline for submissions is March 21; the competition takes place April 18. For additional information, send e-mail to Katie Bingman or call 368-3557.


The Department of Psychiatry is sponsoring an educational series, Diagnostic Dilemmas, to explore the social and cultural controversies in psychiatric diagnosis. The first event, "The Evolving Meanings of Psychiatric Diagnosis," will take an interdisciplinary look at what a diagnosis signifies beginning at 6 p.m., March 20 at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Room 320AB. The target audience is mental health providers, consumers and people who have an interest in the topic. Free. For information call (216) 844-5059.

Refer to the Web event calendar for a list of events and activities on campus and in the community today and in the days ahead.

In Memoriam

Kim Hauenstein, who served as executive director of the United Protestant Campus Ministries in Cleveland (UPCaM), recently died. UPCaM provides ministry to Case Western Reserve University and several other local colleges. In addition, he was one of the instructors for The Simpsons and Religious Life at Case course that is offered during the Welcome Days orientation program. Information on a memorial service to be conducted at the Church of the Covenant is forthcoming.

March 18, 2008

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Case in the News

Online legal research revolution, March 17, 2008
For nearly two decades, gradual progress has been made towards greater free public access to federal court records. Several educational and legal groups have worked towards disseminating Supreme Court opinions electronically, including Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

An organization, Life Sharers, raises ethical questions about organ donation

The Plain Dealer, March 18, 2008
Life Sharers is an organization that grants members priority to organs donated by other members upon death. United Network for Organ Sharing, the national organization charged with matching donor organs with recipients, rejects the Life Sharers approach. Mark Aeder, assistant surgery professor at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, comments.

A Texas-sized battle: Evolution vs. ID

The Plain Dealer, March 17, 2008
The controversy over the teaching of evolution in public schools remains a topic at the forefront of discussion. Lawrence Krauss, a physics and astronomy professor at Case Western Reserve University, comments.

Higher Ed News

The mental health squeeze

Inside Higher Ed, March 18, 2008
Colleges across the country are attempting to respond to the higher demand for students in need of mental health services, but the reality many counseling centers face is a limited budget and fewer available resources.

Other Events

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