Research and Applied Practica

Coordinator:  Megan Wilson, Ph.D.

Applied Practica in Psychology (PSYC4770) and Research Practica in Psychology (PSYC4760) have the following prerequisites:

  • Psychology major or post-baccalaureate status
  • Sophomore or higher standing
  • PSYC3110 (Interpersonal Behavior) (For Applied, PSYC4770 only)
  • A student must have a minimum (overall) GPA of 2.5 and a minimum Psychology GPA of 3.0
  • Advising and authorization by the department
Students work and receive training in a setting where psychological methods and principles are applied in a community setting (PSYC4770) or through directed research involving the principles and methods of psychology in a research setting (PSYC4760). Each practicum course is equivalent to 1-3 credit hours of course work. Students are required to receive 30 hours of training for each credit hour registered. Each student is expected to have weekly contact with an on-site supervisor or faculty supervisor directing the project.

Students are expected to demonstrate their growth and their ability to integrate this experience through a written document at the end of the semester for each practicum, e.g. a scholarly paper, a journal, or reaction paper. All students registered for practicum will receive a grade of "S" or "U" in this course. According to the provision of the current catalog, we allow students a maximum combined total of (6) six hours of Psyc 4760 or Psyc 4770. No more than (3) three credit hours can be taken per semester, for example, (3) three Fall semester and (3) three Spring semester for a total of (6) six or (2) two fall, (2) two Spring and (2) two Summer for a total of (6) six.

Applied/Service Practica (4770). This training experience gives students hands-on experience in the field working with children, courts, advocacy groups, faculty projects, and other community-based agencies. Students planning to apply to graduate programs or jobs in psychology will enhance their applications with the addition of this experience. Students will also develop new skills and gain valuable work experience participating in a service practica. The Psychology Department maintains a roster of agencies and faculty projects that have practicum positions open for undergraduates on the Psychology Department undergraduate web page.

Research Practica (4760). This is an opportunity for students to get hands-on directed research experience in the Psychology Department. Faculty needing help on their grants or other research/academic projects often offer practicum experiences. This opportunity is especially useful for students planning to continue their studies in graduate school. Practicum opportunities are also available with hospital-based research projects and local universities looking for a large number of undergraduates for their projects.

Students MUST begin by making an appointment with an undergraduate coordinator (email Bryan Kolo:  bkolo@gsu.edu) in the Psychology department to discuss their academic standing and to check that course prerequisites have been satisfied.

  • Review the practicum website and identify at least 2 practicum site you would like to interview with before going to the advising session.
  • Practicum coordinator will check prerequisites, go over available sites, and discuss student's eligibility for practicum course credit.
  • If interested in working in a faculty lab, students should contact faculty directly ONLY AFTER COMPLETING ADVISEMENT unless an agreement was made with the faculty member prior. (Let coordinator know, if so.)
  • Practicum credit-eligible students will receive an application from the practicum coordinator once the advisement session is complete.
  • The coordinator will authorize the application form, which indicates that the student has been advised. Students will not be allowed to interview at the applied site or consult with the faculty member without this authorization.
  • After students have completed their interviews and have selected a site or faculty project for practicum they must complete the appropriate application and leave with the receptionist on the 11th floor for Dr. Megan Wilson.
  • The Practicum program will contact students using their Georgia State email address only with information to complete the registration process.
  • Students should allow at least one month to complete the entire process for practica sites off campus. These sites will require interviews of students at the site.
  • The practicum application deadline is the Tuesday preceding the start of the desired semester.
Students working on faculty projects must comply with written evaluations as outlined by faculty supervisors. All students registered for practicum will receive either an "S" (satisfactory) or "U" (unsatisfactory) grade for the course. All off-campus practicum sites receive a midterm and final evaluation form from the Practicum Office. The practicum office will use supervisor evaluations along with final written paper for the final assigned grade.
If you need additional information please email the practicum program at: mwilson72@gsu.edu with “practicum” in the Subject Line. You will receive an automatic response with the following Word attachments: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s), Registration Instructions, and other resource information to help with the practicum advisement process.

Program Description: The Grady Trauma Project (GTP) is a federally funded research project with the goal of understanding genetic, environmental and gene x environment predictors of PTSD. The broader goal of the Grady Trauma Project is scientific and clinical understanding and prevention of PTSD and other trauma related mental disorders in the population of patients served by Grady Health System.

  • Hours: 5‑10 hours per week
  • Number of semesters: Minimum of 1 semester, but 2 semesters or one calendar year is preferable
  • Supervision: 1 hour group supervision per week (team meeting)
  • Duties: Students will administer protocols to participants, recruitment of participants, data entry and measurements, and other administrative research tasks.

Program Description: The Marcus Autism Center (MAC) is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to provide information, services, and programs to children with autism and related disorders, their families and those who live and work with them. We offer integrated advances clinical, behavioral, and educational and family support services through a single organization to reduce the stress for families that use our services. This placement is ideal for students considering graduate training in psychology, pediatrics, family social work, or a related behavioral health fields. Students will gain valuable training by participant in clinical and research activities addressing a variety of pediatric populations, including Pediatric Psychology and Feeding Disorders Program and Language Learning Clinic.

A 10 hour commitment per week is preferred. Fall, spring, summer semesters are available. Efforts will be made to match student interests with the needs of each program. Training will involve both individual and group supervision. At a minimum, individual and team supervision is provided weekly, although the nature of the clinical services provided at MAC often necessitates more frequent/daily supervision to guide treatment procedures. A description of each program and corresponding responsibilities is provided below:

Pediatric Psychology and Feeding Disorders Program:  The pediatric feeding disorders program services children who have chronic issues with nutritional and/or caloric intake.  A large percentage of the population treated at the clinic rely on alternative means to meet their nutritional needs (e.g., a feeding tube) or display very selective eating patterns, which compromises their intake of essential vitamins and minerals. The average age of children treated is about 3 years of age.  Feeding difficulties displayed by children in the program are often the result of a complex interaction between a numbers of factors. Many have complicated medical histories, such as food allergies or reflux.  Problem behaviors (e.g., crying, disruptions, aggression) develop as a means to escape food presentations intense refusal behaviors occur during most meals and maintaining low levels of intake after the medical issues are resolved. Interest in working with children in an interdisciplinary team is preferred. Training will include mealtime data collection of target behaviors using an event recording procedure, as well as tracking parent-child interactions during meals using a behavioral coding system. Students will also assist in ongoing research protocols, including scoring of instruments, data entry, and other administrative research tasks. Students may rate family interaction variables from videotaped family assessments.

Language and Learning Clinic (LLC): Intervention offered through the LLC is specifically designed to promote skill acquisition in the domains of functional communication, adaptive daily living skills, pre-academic and academic skills, and social relationships. The LLC offers intensive 1-on-1 ABA/Verbal Behavior services to children with significant language and adaptive skills delays. We serve children in need of services targeting increases in receptive and/or expressive language, pre-academic training, and social skills. Clients are primarily between the ages of 2-12 years. Language and adaptive skills are assessed via the Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills-Revised (ABLLS-R) and acquisition programming is based on these results. Students will learn to implement discrete-trial training, verbal behavior programming, and natural environment teaching with a variety of cases. In addition, functional analyses and functional assessments are conducted to assess problem behavior and structures behavior protocols are frequently implemented. Students will be observed in vivo or via videotape implementing treatment procedures.

  • Hours: 10 per week
  • Number of Semesters: two semesters
  • Supervision: at least once a week

Program Description: This research project provides treatment to abused, suicidal Black women within a clinical setting.

  • Hours: 6 hours per week in the fall/spring and 9 hours per week in the summer
  • Number of semesters: Minimum of two-semesters
  • Supervision: Weekly one hour research assistant meeting and weekly 30-minute group supervision
  • Duties: Students will recruit and screen potential participants for our current research studies, conduct study assessments, observe therapy groups, screen prospective patients for Nia’s therapy groups. Enter study data, co-coordinate patient outreach events, and miscellaneous administrative responsibilities.
Program Description: Brain Balance Achievement Centers offer a comprehensive, drug-free program that helps kids overcome their behavioral, learning and social difficulties enabling them to reach their full potential. Our integrated approach, utilizing hemispheric exercises and academics, allows us to create individualized programs that help establish improved brain connectivity and synchronization. This can lead to a reduction or elimination of negative behaviors and improves the ability to learn academically, socially and emotionally.

  • Hours: This practicum is for three credit hour practicum students only and students will be required to work between 30-45 hours per credit hour. The practicum student will work one day (five hours) one week then two days (10 hours) the next week. This cycle will repeat throughout the semester (spring and fall). Seven-week summer semester practicum students would be required to work three days per week, five hours per day (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) for a total of 15 hours per week.
  • Number of semesters: A minimum of one semester is required for spring and fall semesters and additional semesters would be welcome. Seven-week summer semester is also available as a stand-alone practicum. Three-week summer semester would require securing a spring semester position as well.
  • Supervision: Students will meet with a supervisor weekly.
  • Duties: Practicum students will assist sessions between children and their coaches. During initial training practicum students will be responsible for collecting data during the sessions, and then entering the data after the sessions. Once a student has completed the required number of initial training hours, he/she will be allowed to work hands-on with the children once every 3 sessions and assist with the completion of activities prescribed by the program. Students may be required to attend weekly staff meetings.
Program Description: Caminar Latino ("Latino Journey") was founded in 1990 and its mission is to provide opportunities for Latino families affected by violence to transform their lives and their communities. Caminar Latino carries out its mission by creating safe spaces for each family member to begin their journey towards non-violence, and remains Georgia’s first and only comprehensive domestic violence intervention program for Latino families. Caminar Latino currently offers: support groups for Latina survivors, a certified 24-session intervention program for Latino males who have used violence, 5 sharing groups for Latino Youth witnesses of violence, information and referral services, parenting classes, and community outreach and education. Caminar Latino serves as training and research site for university graduate and undergraduate students and has practicum positions and volunteer opportunities available. Direct service volunteer/ practicum opportunities require that individuals be available Wednesday evenings from 6pm-9:30pm. The purpose of the practicum is to provide the student with hands-on experience in a group setting with Latino children affected by domestic violence. The students will co-facilitate one of the sharing groups for children, together with an experienced graduate student or community member.

  • Hours: 4 hours per week
  • Number of semesters: Minimum of two semesters
  • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisors on a weekly basis
  • Duties: Group facilitation will include planning for sessions, working directly with children during group activities, learning to identify behaviors that may signal potential problems in individual children, developing new experiential exercises in order to access and understand children’s feelings, among others.  
Program Description: Cool Girls, Inc. is dedicated to the self-empowerment of girls in low-income communities. Cool Girls offer opportunities for young girls (six to sixteen) to gain confidence by providing: mentoring relationships, field trips, health and life skills education and academic support.
  • Hours: five hours per week
  • Number of semesters: Minimum of two semesters
  • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisors on a weekly basis
  • Duties: Students will assist with administrative tasks needed to support curriculum development for existing after school programs (Cool Scholars and Cools Girls Club.) Students will also assist in the following: program development, and support for staff delivering four-to-six week training modules on life skills, pregnancy prevention, conflict resolution, self-esteem, and cultural awareness.

    Longitudinal Follow-Up of Pediatric Brain Tumor Survivors

    This study examines the current psychological, social, intellectual and motor functioning of children and adult survivors of pediatric brain tumors. We are interested in the development of these individuals across the lifespan, identifying risk factors for poor long-term outcomes, how genetics might contribute to risk or resilience, and how brain function and structure relates to cognitive and behavioral functioning. Participants undergo a neuropsychological evaluation and participate in functional neuroimaging. We are also working to compare computerized cognitive measures to traditional paper and pencil measures to determine their suitability for the brain tumor population. The lack of comprehensive and longitudinal research involving individuals with brain tumors makes working with this research/database a unique opportunity. We also have a large and growing sample of neuropsychological and neuroimaging data on healthy individuals.

    "For more information, see the DNP-ATL website 

     

    Student Responsibilities

    • Compiling test materials for participants
    • Creating and maintaining research databases
    • Photocopying, filing, organizing, scanning
    • Compiling pertinent research articles
    • Scoring neuropsychological tests and measures
    • Helping with acquisition of functional neuroimaging data (fMRI)
    • Opportunities to help acquire, score, and analyze data on healthy controls
    • Time Commitment: at least 5 hrs/wk for a minimum of 2 semesters including the summer

    Learning Outcomes

    • Learn about research methods and design, data management and analyses, and the personal and professional requirements of a graduate career.
    • Learn about neuropsychological research using some or all of the measures described above.
    • Learn from other research studies about the cognitive and neural mechanisms involved in brain tumor survivors and healthy populations.
    • Practice critical thinking and communication skills.
    • Have opportunities to analyze, interpret, and report findings from these studies at PURC, GSURC, or other professional conferences.

    Mentoring plan: We employ a vertical mentoring model. University Assistants work on a daily basis with doctoral students in the Clinical Psychology/Neuropsychology graduate program, who in turn are directly supervised by Dr. King biweekly regarding student progress. Dr. King also meets directly with the University Assistant to discuss the student’s academic and laboratory performance, the student’s plans for the future, and any questions or background about the ongoing studies.

    Qualifications: Assistantships are available to any outstanding student, but preference will be given to students in psychology or neuroscience who are interested in neuropsychology and learning neuroimaging techniques. Assistantships are for one year and may be renewed, contingent on satisfactory academic and laboratory performance.

    If interested, please email your resume/CV and transcript to: Rella Kautiainen – rkautiainen1@student.gsu.edu

    NOTE: AS OF MARCH 1, 2016 the FSAP IS NO LONGER SEEKING UNDERGRADUATES (we will update this site as soon as they do).

    Program Description: This site will expose students to a breadth of services provided as part of the core services of the EEAP.  Students will receive supervision in the four core services: Organizational Dynamics, Health Promotion and Wellness, Education and Outreach, and Behavioral Mental Health.  This dynamic program serves a diverse population of faculty, staff, administrators, physicians, residents, and their immediate family members.

    • Hours: 5-8 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum of one semester
    • Supervision:  one hour of individual supervision weekly with professional staff
    • Duties:  Students will participate in specific activities in each of the four core service areas with the option of selecting one area that is of most interest in which they can devote more time and effort.  Students will also be invited to attend at least one clinical case conference where an interdisciplinary team of mental health professionals discusses challenging clinical cases.  Finally, students are asked to develop a workshop or project of special interest to them and present this to the FSAP team at the conclusion of their practicum experience.
    Program Description: FCCFV, Haven House, is dedicated to ending the cycle of family violence for all victims regardless of race, class, sexual orientation, age, disability, political affiliation, national origin, ethnicity, or religious belief. They provide services that include: 24-hour crisis line, battered women's and children's support groups, individual counseling, legal advocacy, temporary protective orders, legal and medical counseling referrals and emergency shelter.
    • Hours: 5 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum of 1 semester
    • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisor on a weekly basis
    • Duties: Students will assist clients in an 18-bed shelter in various areas such as, helping with legal advocacy, coordinating activities for women and children, and escorting individuals to the shelter  

    Program Description: The Georgia Center for Child Advocacy serves children who are victims of sexual abuse, severe physical abuse, or a witness to a violent crime. The Center provides services including forensic interviews of alleged victims, forensic evaluations of alleged victims, therapy services for victims of sexual abuse, and family advocacy for the non-offending caregivers of abuse victims. The Center also coordinates the multidisciplinary case review meetings (bi-weekly) to fully assess each case of possible child abuse.

    • Hours: 5 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum 1 semester, 2 preferred
    • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisor on a weekly basis
    • Duties: Students will attend an orientation session which will provide the students with an overview of the services offered by the center and will enable the students to gain a clear understanding of the dynamics of child sexual abuse. Students will assist in the coordination with agencies involved in the investigation of child abuse. Students will also assist in case tracking and statistical data collection. Students will work with a family advocate to provide case management to clients, ensuring that they are connected to appropriate resources in the community.  Students will be asked to work on other projects/tasks as needed by the center.
    Program Description: This is a place where youth can develop life coping skills and successfully put them into practice while connecting with the community by serving others.
    • Hours: 5 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum of 1 semester, 2 preferred
    • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisor on a weekly basis
    • Duties: Students will assist in the classroom and work one-to-one with high-risk teens. Duties also include developing academic plans and assisting in the delivery of group classes on life and job skills. Students will also participate in the following in-service training classes: rape counseling, drug prevention, and working with forensic populations.

    Kate’s Club is a leading Atlanta area nonprofit organization that empowers children and teens facing life after the death of a parent or sibling. By creating friendships with kids and young adults that share the experience, Kate’s Club guides children through their grief journey in a comfortable, safe, and uplifting setting. See katesclub.org for more information.

    Candidates should have a passion for Kate’s Club’s mission and the ability to play an integral role in advancing the organization’s efforts to reach the estimated 70,000 children and teens in the metro Atlanta area facing life after the death of a parent or sibling. Interns will serve as members of a small staff team and be supervised directly by Kate’s Club’s program staff. Interns have the opportunity to gain significant professional experience, playing a lead role in the design and implementation of critical projects, and gaining exposure to every aspect of a dynamic and growing organization.

    Program Description: The Marcus Autism Center (MAC) is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to provide information, services, and programs to children with autism and related disorders, their families and those who live and work with them. We offer integrated advances clinical, behavioral, and educational and family support services through a single organization to reduce the stress for families that use our services. This placement is ideal for students considering graduate training in psychology, pediatrics, family social work, or a related behavioral health fields. Students will gain valuable training by participant in clinical and research activities addressing a variety of pediatric populations, including Pediatric Psychology and Feeding Disorders Program and Language Learning Clinic.

    A 10-hour commitment per week is preferred. Fall, spring, summer semesters are available. Efforts will be made to match student interests with the needs of each program. Training will involve both individual and group supervision. At a minimum, individual and team supervision is provided weekly, although the nature of the clinical services provided at MAC often necessitates more frequent/daily supervision to guide treatment procedures. A description of each program and corresponding responsibilities is provided below: Pediatric Psychology and Feeding Disorders Program: The pediatric feeding disorders program services children who have chronic issues with nutritional and/or caloric intake. A large percentage of the population treated at the clinic rely on alternative means to meet their nutritional needs (e.g., a feeding tube) or display very selective eating patterns, which compromises their intake of essential vitamins and minerals. The average age of children treated is about 3 years of age. Feeding difficulties displayed by children in the program are often the result of a complex interaction between a number of factors. Many have complicated medical histories, such as food allergies or reflux. Problem behaviors (e.g., crying, disruptions, aggression) develop as a means to escape food presentations intense refusal behaviors occur during most meals and maintaining low levels of intake after the medical issues are resolved. Interest in working with children in an interdisciplinary team is preferred. Training will include mealtime data collection of target behaviors using an event recording procedure, as well as tracking parent-child interactions during meals using a behavioral coding system. Students will also assist in ongoing research protocols, including scoring of instruments, data entry, and other administrative research tasks. Students may rate family interaction variables from videotaped family assessments. Language and Learning Clinic (LLC): Intervention offered through the LLC is specifically designed to promote skill acquisition in the domains of functional communication, adaptive daily living skills, pre-academic and academic skills, and social relationships. The LLC offers intensive 1-on-1 ABA/Verbal Behavior services to children with significant language and adaptive skills delays. We serve children in need of services targeting increases in receptive and/or expressive language, pre-academic training, and social skills. Clients are primarily between the ages of 2-12 years. Language and adaptive skills are assessed via the Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills-Revised (ABLLS-R), and acquisition programming is based on these results. Students will learn to implement discrete-trial training, verbal behavior programming, and natural environment teaching with a variety of cases. In addition, functional analyses and functional assessments are conducted to assess problem behavior and structures behavior protocols are frequently implemented. Students will be observed in vivo or via videotape implementing treatment procedures.

    • Hours: 10 per week
    • Number of Semesters: 2 semesters
    • Supervision: at least once a week

    Program Description: Open Hand began in 1988, providing meals to Atlantans who were dying of AIDS. In 2000, Open Hand expanded its mission and began to serve homebound seniors and others suffering from chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, renal disease, etc. Today, Open Hand prepares, packages, and delivers up to 5,000 meals daily, 3 million meals per year, throughout 19 metro Atlanta counties and Athens, Georgia. Open Hand’s registered dietitians plan balanced menus and select products according to the level of nutrition care determined for each client’s needs. All clients receive nutrition education, delivered on a regular basis with the meals, and can access individual or group nutrition education and counseling sessions on topics such as portion control, healthy eating, hands-on food preparation, physical activity, goal-setting, and self-management.

    • Hours: 16 per week preferred
    • Number of Semesters: Minimum 1
    • Duties: Students will gain a deeper understanding of how a nonprofit works: students will be exposed to most duties that volunteers perform (including preparing meals) and will also be exposed to the scheduling, fundraising and other activities vital to running a successful nonprofit agency. Students may enhance public speaking skills by facilitating orientations and trainings, as well as provide administrative and staff support. Additionally, students will schedule volunteers and maintain calendars, maintain a volunteer database, and assist in creating and editing documents such as emails, letters, flyers, agendas, and reports. Interested students can also deliver meals to clients (must have a vehicle). These tasks will allow students to gain knowledge of volunteer management and its importance to nonprofit operations.
    Program Description: Vistacare Hospice provides medical, psychological and spiritual care to persons with a prognosis or 6months or less regardless of their financial situation or complexity of care needs. In this practicum, students will acquire hands-on experience by working with hospice patients, offering companionship and emotional support to people with life-limiting illness. You will work with VistaCare’s interdisciplinary team, which is charged with relieving the physical, emotional, spiritual and social pain of patients and their family members. Volunteers will visit patients living in private residences, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities in Cobb County, North Fulton, and North DeKalb. You may also work a shift and see patients at one of our in-patient facilities located at Emory University Hospital and at Emory Hospital Midtown. OR, for a complete experience of hospice care, you may want to combine a shift at an in-patient unit with visits to home care patients.

    Practicum students must meet for an initial interview with VistaCare’s Manager of Volunteer Services, submit an application, and attend a 4-hour training class. Also required: a 2-step TB test, a background check, and two references.

    • Hours: 5 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum of 1 semester
    • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisor on a weekly basis
    • Duties: Duties are flexible based on students’ interests. Duties include working with patients in the end stage of life by doing visitations to patients’ homes or nursing care facilities. Students can also work with a chaplain to help patients and their families deal with grief. Students could also work with a social worker and talk with families about a variety of issues including funeral arrangements, financial situations, family relationships, etc. Practicum students will also learn about how the hospice office works by assisting our administrative staff with their efforts to support our field staff.

    Program Description: The WRC is a comprehensive center that provides training for volunteers to work in various programs that expend women's' issues (i.e. domestic violence, rape, homelessness, lesbian issues, etc.). This practicum opportunity focuses on the program to end domestic violence.

    • Hours: Minimum of 8 hours per week
    • Number of semesters: Minimum of 1 semester
    • Supervision: Students will meet with supervisor on a weekly basis
    • Duties: Opportunities include positions in emergency shelter (assist with children’s programs, support groups for residents and household tasks), hotline advocacy (trained volunteers provide telephone support to women who call needing a compassionate ear and/or information about domestic violence), children’s program (assist with support groups and child-centered services) and legal advocacy (assist staff legal advocates as they help women fill out and file Temporary Protective Orders). Students will attend training classes.
    In the CEBUS lab we investigate the evolution of economic decision-making using non-human primates as a model to understand human behavior.  One of our major areas of research is exploring how non-human primates make decisions underlying cooperation, reciprocity, inequity and property, and how those decisions are altered based on social and ecological contexts. We take an explicitly comparative approach, studying eight primate species, human children, human adults, and non-primate animals, to better understand the evolution of these behaviors. For an overview of the major research topics in our lab, please see http://www.sarah-brosnan.com/research/ (click on the links to learn more about each topic, as well as to connect to recently published papers).

    Duties:

    • Observing videotapes of studies and coding behaviors
    • Entering and analyzing data from studies
    • Assisting with research projects
    • Attending lab meetings (including presenting papers)
    • Preparing an annotated bibliography or poster presentation of work

    Note that a 2-semester minimum commitment is required

    This lab examines children's' the interplay of child psychology and pediatric medicine. Topics of study include children's distress associated with medical procedures, helping children manage pediatric chronic pain, family adjustment to pediatric chronic illness, and adherence to pediatric medical regimens.

    Current Projects

    • Parent-child interactions during preschoolers' immunizations
    • Adherence to pediatric HIV treatment
    • The impact of pediatric sickle cell disease on the parents and the child patient
    • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for pediatric chronic illness
    • Randomized controlled trial of acute pediatric pain treatments

    Responsibilities

    • Literature review for articles related to current projects
    • Build electronic database
    • Attend lab meetings
    • Help reduce and analyze data
    • Coding of behavioral data
    • Data collection (e.g., interviewing, videotaping, interacting with pediatric patients and their parents)

    Longitudinal Follow-Up of Pediatric Brain Tumor Survivors: This study examines the current psychological, social, intellectual and motor functioning of adults diagnosed and treated for a brain tumor in childhood. Now adults, these individuals were once examined on a yearly basis by neuropsychologists at Georgia State University. The lack of comprehensive and longitudinal research involving children with brain tumors makes working with this research/database a unique opportunity. We are interested in the development of these individuals since the time of their last evaluation. Participants from the original study will be recruited and will undergo a neuropsychological evaluation. They will also undergo a neurological evaluation and participate in functional neuroimaging. Please watch our lab video on YouTube.

    See http://www2.gsu.edu/~wwwpsy/king.html for information on additional ongoing studies.

    Student Responsibilities

    • Compiling test materials for participants
    • Creating and maintaining research databases
    • Photocopying, filing, organizing, scanning
    • Compiling pertinent research articles
    • Scoring neuropsychological tests and measures
    • Analyzing functional neuroimaging data (fMRI)
    • Time Commitment for research assistants: at least 8 hrs/wk for a minimum of 2 semesters including the summer

    Learning Outcomes

    • Learn about research methods and design, data management and analyses, and the personal and professional requirements of a graduate career.
    • Learn about neuropsychological research using some or all of the measures described above.
    • Learn from other research studies about the cognitive and neural mechanisms involved in brain tumor survivors and healthy populations.
    • Practice critical thinking and communication skills.
    • Have opportunities to analyze, interpret, and report findings from these studies at PURC, GSURC, or other professional conferences.

     Mentoring plan: We employ a vertical mentoring model. University Assistants work on a daily basis with doctoral students in the Clinical Psychology/Neuropsychology graduate program, who in turn are directly supervised by Dr. King biweekly regarding student progress. Dr. King also meets directly with the University Assistant to discuss the student’s academic and laboratory performance, the student’s plans for the future, and any questions or background about the ongoing studies.

    Qualifications: Assistantships are available to any outstanding student, but preference will be given to students in psychology or neuroscience who are interested in neuropsychology and learning neuroimaging techniques. Assistantships are for one year and may be renewed, contingent on satisfactory academic and laboratory performance.

     If interested, please email your resume/cv and transcript to:  

    Michelle Fox

    Undergraduates may work in the lab as a volunteer or as a practicum student. Students assist on two main projects: College Student-Parent's Daily Life. The goal of this study is to understand participant’s experiences both as a student and as a parent.

    Our second ongoing project is in conjunction with several community partners in the Atlanta area. In this project we aim to better understand family processes that are universal and those that are unique to African American families. We also explore the ways that a child’s surroundings help to develop his or her strengths.

    Research opportunities include:

    • Scheduling participants by phone
    • Transcribing and coding participants’ responses from video or audio tape
    • Preparing materials for data collection and IRB submission
    • Assisting with data administrations conducted in at local community agencies and at GSU
    • Entering data into SPSS statistical software and/or Excel spreadsheets
    • Conducting reviews from the most relevant literature and updating files

    Time Commitment: 6 hrs/wk

    Please see our website for more information and for an application: http://www2.gsu.edu/~psycps/family_lab/Research_Opportunities.html

    Visit our page for more information: http://www2.gsu.edu/~psycps/family_lab/Home/Home.html

    Researchers in the IDEA laboratory investigate attention and executive function and the ways in which these processes interact in the working memory system to influence higher-order cognitive abilities like learning and decision-making. Thus, we examine individual and group differences in the skills of attention, planning, and uncertainty monitoring to identify the relation between these mental abilities and the types of training that might improve them. Cross-species research is also ongoing to explore the emergence of executive attention in nonhuman primates. The IDEA laboratory is fully equipped with computers for automated testing of participants, eye-trackers/ pupillometers, psychophysiological instruments, and computer-interfaced response boxes for recording vocal and motor response latencies. Apparatus is also available for relating behavior to brain using measures of cerebral blood flow velocity available from noninvasive imaging technology. Student research opportunities include computerized testing of human and nonhuman primate participants in attention and decision-making experiments. This research may be supported by grants or contracts from the National Institutes of Health, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of Defense, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Georgia State University, and other foundations or agencies.

    Human factors research internships are also available to select graduate students. For more information on this or other research opportunities please contact Dr. David Washburn.

    Scientists at the Sonny Carter Life Sciences Laboratory of the Language Research Center study the behavior and performance of humans and nonhuman animals (principally rhesus monkeys and chimpanzees). This research is designed to elucidate cognitive processes such as attention, learning, memory, and executive function as these constructs are manifest across species. Experiments are designed to reveal how these mental abilities develop, how they correspond to brain mechanisms, how they relate to one another, and how they are affected by cognitive (e.g., perceived control), affective/motivational (e.g., emotion), social (e.g., competition), and environmental (e.g., microgravity) variables. Moreover, research at the SCLSL is designed to examine how psychological well-being can be measured and maintained.

    The SCLSL offers opportunities for biobehavioral collaborative research with investigators from institutions around the world. Graduate and undergraduate students can be involved in every phase of the research. For additional information, please contact Dr. David A. Washburn.

    IDDP Lab 

    Overview: In the IDDP Lab, in both humans and nonhuman primates, we research neurobehavioral factors associated with the development and persistence of psychopathological behaviors (e.g., aggression, substance use, psychopathy). We use a number of different techniques and approaches to investigate these questions including self-report surveys of personality and mental health, computerized neurocognitive tasks, and genetic and brain imaging data.

    Responsibilities: Research Assistants in the IDDP Lab are responsible for a number of different aspects of the research experience including:

    • Conducting research sessions with both undergraduate students as well as children and their families
    • Data management and entry
    • Literature reviews on relevant topics
    • Attending weekly lab meetings
    • Assisting with research presentations and papers

    Additionally, highly motivated assistants will have the opportunity to present their own research at local, regional, and national research conferences as well as potentially completing an Honors Thesis.

    Learning Outcomes: Research assistants will:

    • Receive training on the ethical conduct of research
    • Gain knowledge and experience in using some or all of the research approaches described above
    • Learn to conduct behavioral experiments with human participants
    • Practice critical thinking and communication skills with respect to the interpretation and explanation of research findings

    Requirements: Minimum requirements include a GPA of 3.4 or higher, an interest in pursuing a career in psychology, neuroscience, or related field, and the ability to commit at least 9 hours per week for at least two semesters.

    The overarching aim of the Behavioral Science Laboratory is to identify individuals who are most likely to engage in aggressive behavior as well as the environmental conditions that facilitate their aggression.  As such, research in the lab examines a wide variety of risk factors for aggression.  Major areas of focus include (1) examination of the effects of acute alcohol intoxication and cognitive processes on aggression – particularly intimate partner violence, (2) investigation of individual and situational variables that facilitate or inhibit prosocial bystander intervention for sexual violence, and (3) personality and attitudinal constructs (e.g., prejudice) and situational and/or social cues (e.g., the presence of others) on the perpetration of aggression toward sexual minorities.  We recently completed an NIAAA funded multisite laboratory-based project with Purdue University (Christopher Eckhardt, Co-PI) designed to examine how specific affective and cognitive processes mediate the relationship between alcohol intoxication and intimate partner aggression.

    At present, we are conducting two large-scale NIAAA funded studies.  The first project examines the proximal effects of alcohol on the perpetration of intimate partner violence within same-sex couples (SS-IPV).  The second project (in collaboration with Dr. Laura Salazar, Co-PI) is evaluating a web-based intervention designed to facilitate prosocial and effective bystander behavior among intoxicated bystanders. In addition, additional ongoing projects address the major areas of focus described above and include collaborations with researchers within the Center for Research on Interpersonal Violence.

    Current Doctoral Students

    • Jessica Grom:  Jessica’s interests include identifying risk and protective factors for alcohol-facilitated intimate partner violence and sexual violence.
    • Miklós Halmos: Miklós’ research is focused on understanding individual and situational risk and protective factors for aggression perpetration and victimization. Furthermore, he is interested in understanding and predicting aggression among intimate partners in order to prevent the progression of aggression into violence.
    • Kevin Moino: Kevin’s research examines how prejudice and stereotypes manifest into behaviors (including aggression and discrimination) that lead to health disparities in marginalized populations.

    The imaging genetics research programs in this lab use structural and functional neuroimaging data, as well as genetic data, to explore the genetic influences on the development of various traits or disorders. Current projects are focusing on schizophrenia, Huntington's Disease, and ADHD. Within schizophrenia the focus is on the mechanisms underlying hallucinations and other reality distortions.  These research projects are best suited to students with a solid mathematics background and an interest in both neuroscience and cognitive psychology. The informatics projects are focused on making the process of reading the neuroimaging literature more efficient, developing text-mining techniques to extract what a paper is about and what the experimental methods were. These efforts tie into the larger project of knowledge engineering, linking computer sciences and cognitive neurosciences in the service of more effective biomedical research. All these projects are highly interdisciplinary, and collaborative across multiple institutions and departments for access to large datasets and novel algorithms. 
    The HIV and Families Lab empirically examines issues at the intersection of HIV and families. The research team is currently part of a randomized clinical trial, taking place at multiple sites around the country, including Georgia State University. Specifically, the Parents Matter! Program is a prevention intervention designed to help parents of elementary school-aged children employ parenting and communication strategies that protect children from facing a variety of health risks, including HIV/AIDS. Additionally, the research team is involved in studies examining the impact of maternal HIV infection on parenting and, ultimately, child functioning. Most recently, the team is looking for opportunities to expand both areas of research to the international arena.
    The research in our lab aims to improve our understanding of risk for depression and anxiety in children. We study of how family factors, such as exposure to mothers’ sadness and anger, are related to children’s guilt, shame, empathy, prosocial behavior, and emotion reactivity. We use multi-method approaches that include observing and rating social behaviors and parent-child conversations, recording and scoring physiological reactivity with ECGs, quantifying cognitive biases with computer tasks, using MRIs to measure neural activity while viewing others’ emotions, and interviews to assess symptoms of psychopathology. Undergraduate researchers are involved in various aspects of this research.

    Feelings Lab  Application 

    Our research focuses on (1) understanding the processes of resilience and positive youth development in adolescence, and (2) evaluating the effectiveness of community-based prevention and health promotion programs. With perspectives gleaned from community psychology, we value collaboration, interdisciplinary scholarship and varied research methods to make a difference in the communities we serve. For more information on our research and on getting involved, please go to: sites.gsu.edu/gkuperminc.
    We are interested in advancing science in the areas of stress and stress-related outcomes, with particular focus on factors that produce, or reduce, stress, and factors that make stress more, or less, problematic for people. Most of our work has emphasized stress risk and resilience that might be linked to different kinds of personality characteristics, especially perfectionism. We study stress and personality in lab, with projects examining physiological aspects of stress reactivity, and also conduct studies outside of the lab with projects examining academic, health, and other personal and interpersonal outcomes. Research assistants participate in various aspects of current studies, such as:

    • Completion of required training for those conducting human subjects research
    • Participation in regular research team meetings
    • Reading, reviewing, and discussing relevant research articles
    • Implementing procedures to run subjects through laboratory studies
    • Data coding, entry, and data management
    • Work with other team members to prepare research papers and presentations at national conferences

    Students interested in becoming involved with this research team should do the following:

    1. Determine if they have, on average, five or more hours per week to devote to the research team
    2. Read several (>5) abstracts from recent published research papers that Dr. Rice has authored. This will give you a good idea about current interest areas for the research team
    3. Read completely at least one of his recent articles.

    Recent Articles 

    If after completing 1-3, you are still interested, then email an unofficial copy of your transcripts, vita or resume, and a short note about your interest to Dr. Rice. He may subsequently arrange a time to meet with him or one of his graduate students to see if you can be involved in the team.

    Dr. Aharoni's research lab draws upon interdisciplinary approaches to understand and shape the ways in which extra-rational factors, such as emotion, influence decision making in legal, criminal, interpersonal, and policy domains. This lab brings together perspectives from cognitive science, neuroscience, law, criminology, philosophy, economics, clinical psychology, evolutionary psychology, and computer science.

    Duties may include:

    • Assisting in research design
    • Engaging in data collection
    • Helping with data analysis
    • Compiling literature reviews
    • Aiding Dr. Aharoni in the reporting of laboratory studies
    • Attending weekly meetings

    Please note that a minimum 2-semester commitment is strongly preferred.

    For more information