Department of Psychology
Our faculty are excited to work with undergraduate and graduate students on a variety of research projects. See below for more information on the types of research we do.
Department of Psychology:
|Student Research Opportunities | Faculty Research Interests | Student Research|
Student Research Opportunities in the Department of Psychology
Contact any of the faculty below to learn more about how you can get involved with their research.
|Faculty Name||Lab Name|
|Mel Baker||Psychology, Law, Emotions, and Attitudes (PLEA) Lab|
|Pitt Derryberry||Research of Ethical and Social Topics (REST) Lab|
|Lisa C. Duffin||The Academic Quality (TAQ) Lab|
|Rick Grieve||Clinical/Applied Research (CAR) Group|
|Thomas Gross||Behavior in Education, Assessment and Results (BEAR) Lab|
|Sungjin Im||Translational Neuroscience Laboratory (TNL)|
|Sally Kuhlenschmidt||Abilities Research Group|
|Sarah Ochs||Measurement and Intervention Team|
|Tony Paquin||Cross-cultural Psychology Lab|
|Chris Peters||Forensic and Applied Cognitive Theory in Society Lab|
|Jenni Redifer||Attention and Memory Lab|
|Tim Thornberry||Parent Child Research Lab|
|Steve Wininger||Motivation Lab|
|Qin Zhao||Metacognition Lab|
Faculty Research Interests
My empirical research focuses on the application of social-cognitive psychology to questions and issues related to law and the legal system.
Lab: Psychology, Law, Emotions, and Attitudes (PLEA) Lab
My research interests pertain to socio-cognitive development during adolescence and the college years with specific emphases on the development of moral judgment and self-understanding.
Lab: Research of Ethical and Social Topics (REST) Lab
Lisa C. Duffin
My research interest spans the factors that impact academic quality at many different levels (i.e., program-level, group-level, and individual-level) and in many different contexts (i.e., university, K-12 schools, lab).
Lab: The Academic Quality (TAQ) Lab
My research interests lie in the area of eating disorders, and right now I am investigating men's eating disorders, especially muscle dysmorphia. I am also interested in sport fan behaviors. I have a number of studies going in both areas through the Clinical/Applied Research (CAR) Group.
Lab: Clinical/Applied Research (CAR) Group
The Behavior in Education, Assessment and Results (BEAR) Lab focuses on applied research with child, family, and learner support systems. There are currently a few ongoing projects:
- Broadening Participation Research Project: Investigating the Integration of Mathematics into Biology by Reciprocal Course Content Exchange (NSF Grant #1719262).
- The Good Behavior Game and Student Motivation.
- School Psychology Diversity Training and Training Assessment.
- Family and Youth Assessments and Behavioral Outcomes in School and Community Settings.
Dr. Sungjin Im
My research pertains to 1) mechanisms of change that underlie post-traumatic stress disorder, substance use disorders, and severe mental illness, 2) efficacy of mindfulness-based interventions, especially their impact on cognitive function, 3) transdiagnostic processes that cut across multiple psychological disorders, and 4) integration of multi-method approaches to improving our understanding of diagnostic categories and nature of psychopathology. My research projects involve various methods including self-reports, clinical interviews, computerized tasks, (neuro) physiological recordings (e.g., EEG, ECG, HRV, skin conductance, and impedance cardiography).
I work primarily with graduate students and have a variety of research interests that engage me in many types of projects. In terms of populations older adults are a special focus with a sample graduate student project being mindfulness in older adults. I also have an interest in technological applications and implications for clinical practice. I enjoy evaluation of psychological assessments which is a key component of most research topics. Currently I am working on projects involving mindfulness practices.
My research examines how we can most accurately identify youth at risk for a variety of academic, behavioral, and mental health concerns. This includes improving measurement through studies of technical adequacy and practical utility. I am also interested in how we can use technology and other novel assessment approaches to improve accuracy, particularly for diverse student populations.
My general research interests include: (1) The impact of culture on workplace behavior (e.g., productivity/organizational effectiveness, leadership, incivility) in traditional and nontraditional organizations; (2) Cross-cultural perceptions of date rape; (3) Psychometric issues in the translation and design of cross-cultural instruments; and (4) Rater agreement in the context of performance appraisal.
My research focuses on forensic and applied social-cognition with an emphasis on jury decision making and trial procedures. Major research areas include juror opinions in entrapment defense cases and the effects of support dogs on witness anxiety.
My research examines cognitive factors related to student learning and achievement. I am interested in how working memory capacity (the limited attentional resources we have available during effortful tasks) influences problem-solving and retrieval of information from long-term memory. Part of this work investigates methods for teaching effective strategies to individuals with low working memory capacity (i.e., fewer attentional resources).
Lab: Attention and Memory Lab
My research relates to primary care psychology topics, especially parenting, prevention, and public health. Ongoing projects include: examining the utility of analog behavior observations of parent-child interactions; implementation of Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) with rural families; and behavioral health problem prevention and intervention (e.g., smoking cessation, substance abuse, pediatric obesity).
My research interests are in motivation and performance psychology within the contexts of exercise, sport, and education. Primary independent variables include attentional focus, cognitive processing (especially multi-tasking), and goal types. Usual dependent variables assessed are performance, self-selected intensity/pace, perceived effort, and cognitive load.
Recent studies include:
- Impact of Attempting to Multi-Task on Self-Selected Exercise Intensity
- Effect of Goal Type (distance vs. time) on Self-Selected Exercise Intensity
- Effect of Student Classroom Cell Phone Usage on Teachers
Lab: Motivation Lab
My current research interest involves how top-down metacognitive processes (e.g., beliefs/mindsets, self-perceptions, expectancies) influence student learning, motivation, and psychological well-being. I am also interested in reducing common bias (e.g., anchoring, overconfidence) in metacognitive judgments.
Lab: Metacognition Lab
For more information on faculty research interests, visit our Faculty page.
For additional research opportunities in the Department of Psychological Sciences, see http://www.wku.edu/psychological-sciences/research.php