Faculty/Student Research

Students are encouraged to apply what is learned in class through hands-on experience conducting research with a faculty mentor. The psychology department has state of the art research facilities to conduct research in mental health, developmental psychology, or social, cognitive, and affective science. Because Assumption is an undergraduate institution, you will have the distinct benefit of working side-by-side with a faculty member rather than a graduate student or post-doc. In addition, students are engaged in all aspects of the research process so you also can have the unique advantage of being able to present your research as a co-author at regional, national, and international professional conferences in psychology.

Priya Ahluwalia

Priya Ahluwalia
Biology and Psychology '15
Research Project: Hormones and Brain Imaging in Postpartum Depression at UMASS Medical School
Post-Grad Plans: Executive Team Leader at Target

"My research project combined aspects of both biology and psychology, for which I was well prepared. The natural science lab experience I had at Assumption College prepared me for the centrifuging and pipetting and performing urine tests. The psychology courses I took gave me background on the questionnaires used and how these measures were scored, as well as a basic understanding of the DSM-IVTR and DSM-V, which aided in the understanding of diagnosing psychological disorders."

Rachael Hickey
Psychology '16
Research Projects: “Evaluating the neural mechanisms underlying social synchronization in individuals with and without autism; Measuring social communication dynamics in children with autism”

“Getting the opportunity to assist in research has been a wonderful experience. I am learning so much about the research process and being involved with data collection has been really interesting. I'm excited to see where the project goes next!”

Jacqueline LaForce
Psychology '16
Research Project: “Postpartum depression and Coparenting”

“Being a member of the Honors program got me interested in conducting independent research. Professor Kuersten-Hogan and I are looking to see how being at risk for developing postpartum depression affects the coparenting relationship between couples.”

Andrew Lampi
Psychology '16
Exploring Communication Patterns in Children with Autism

"The most interesting part of my research experience has been the fact that I have been able to work on my dream project. I’ve been interested in research on Autism since I arrived at Assumption, so when I heard of this opportunity, I jumped at it."

Katie Schmidt
Psychology '15
Perceiving Movement Synchronization Deficits in Autism

"The most interesting part of my research experience was looking at the results after almost 6 months of working on prepping and running the experiment. Getting to see that my data was significant and hypothesis was correct was so exciting."

A number of our students have also had the exceptional opportunity to become a co-author on a journal publication.

  1. DiGiammarino, R., Kalpidou, M., & Kuersten-Hogan, R. (2012, May). Sensory processing and attachment relate to eating competency in infancy. Poster presented at the annual convention of the Association for Psychological Science, Chicago, Illinois.
  2. Doerfler, L. A., Kirsch, D., Kneeland, J., Truong, D., & McGrath, M. (2012). Mental Health Issues Among College Students: Who Gets Referred for Psychopharmacology Evaluation? Paper presented at the 52nd annual convention of the New England Psychological Association, Worcester, MA.
  3. Fitzpatrick, P., Aguilar, J., Garry, A., & Bongers, R. M. (2013).  Evaluating Perception and Performance in a Hammering Task.  Poster presented at the 17th International Conference on Perception and Action, Lisbon, Portugal.  July, 2013.
  4. Fitzpatrick, P., Januszewski, A., Tocco, K. & Kalpidou, M.  (2013). Relationship between spontaneous imitation during 12-month free-play and prenatal marital quality and coparenting perceptions.  Poster symposium presented at the Society of Research in Child Development 2013 Biennial Meeting, Seattle, Washington, April 2013.
  5. Kuersten-Hogan, R., Faria, M., & DiGiammarino, R. (2013, April). Correlates of Coparenting Dynamics Across the Transition to Parenthood: The Roles of Infant Temperament and Attachment. In R. Kuersten-Hogan (Chair): Predicting Infant and Family Functioning at the end of the First Year: The Impact of Prenatal and Postnatal Family Dynamics. Poster symposium presented at the meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, Washington.
  6. Parmley, M., Zhang, F., Colburn, K. L., Walker, A., Gjemnica, F.,& Georges, N. N. (2013, May).  Exploring serenity: Identifying Distinguishing Characteristics.  Poster presented at the annual Association for Psychological Science Conference in, Washington, D.C.

Assumption College was featured in New England Psychologist  highlighting the opportunities for students to perform research with faculty.  Read the article.

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