Research Labs – Psychology

Faculty-Led Research

Learn about our faculty-led research programs. If you are enrolled and interested in participating in experiments, sign up through the Sona research participation system.

Performance, Affective, Intangible, and Transformative Educational Research Lab

The PAINTER lab focuses on the outcomes of educational experiences, which Shaw (2020) identified as falling into four categories: Performance outcomes can be directly measured, reflecting acquired knowledge and skills; Affective outcomes are changes in beliefs and attitudes about knowledge and the self; Intangible outcomes are acquired complex skills that often involve groups and social interactions; and Transformative outcomes are powerful lifelong changes in understanding and perspective. Current research projects focus on the affective category, exploring the development of curiosity and self-efficacy in higher education contexts.

Behavior, Stereotype and Performance Research Lab

Examines how a variety of social contexts and traits influence behavior and performance. One big area of interest in this lab is understanding what motivates us, what drives us to act one way versus another way to achieve a goal, and why and how certain aspects of a situation influence us while others do not. Another area of interest is in stereotypes and implicit biases, and how they influence our behavior. For example, this lab investigates juries and how implicit biases impact their verdicts and decision-making. In a nutshell, our research aims to understand how we can better our behavior and performance.

Learning, Memory and Sleep Lab

The LuMos Lab aims to better understand the functions of sleep, and how sleep specifically benefits learning, emotions, and memory. Sleep is examined in multiple populations, including preschool nappers, college students, and older adults. This lab also explores the role of sleep in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety, and how sleep might be affected by improved nutrition and exercise.

Conditions, Awareness and Learning Lab

Our research investigates factors that promote personal and intellectual engagement with learning, including characteristics of conditions such as environments in the home, workplace, or classroom that help individuals approach knowledge acquisition in a positive and engaged fashion. Our research also examines the associations between personal and intellectual awareness and overall well-being in life.

Context, Attention, Memory and Perception Lab

Research in CAMP extends to visual cognition, theory of mind and learning, cognition and instruction. These questions are pursued through a variety of methods as we explore both basic research to generate new knowledge or applied aspects of research to address specific clinical questions or problems. A primary area of research revolves around the question of why it is often difficult to search for multiple objects at once. This question, as well as how we mentally represent objects during visual search, is best revealed through monitoring eye movements during various visual search tasks. By understanding the basic question of how we represent objects to guide search, we may better understand more critical applied research questions such as how to improve visual search for airport security screeners. A secondary area of research is devoted to investigating projects in applied cognitive and educational research.