Research comprises the core of our work in the Department of Psychology. At Rochester, psychology research covers four main areas:
- Developmental psychopathology
- Interpersonal relationships
But our research often crosses disciplines and connects domains, and we maintain strong ties with biological and social disciplines across the University, including Mt. Hope Family Center, the Medical Center, the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, and the Warner School of Education. As a result, our work is characterized by collaboration with faculty, researchers, and colleagues on campus and in the community. Undergraduate students also play active roles in departmental research, from research assistants to research study participants.
Locally and globally, our researchers are making discoveries that help lead to an improved understanding of how the world works in an effort to make the world ever better.
Research Opportunities for Undergraduates
Faculty and graduate students of the department are frequently in search of individuals with an interest in social sciences research. These positions vary with regard to requirements, duties and compensation.
Many positions are volunteer positions, and offer an excellent opportunity to participate in the field of psychology first-hand. They also offer valuable experience for those continuing their careers in a research field. Complementing these research themes, the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences offers training and research in cognition and perception and their underlying neural mechanisms.
Faculty Research Interest
|Loisa Bennetto||Professor Bennetto’s research focuses on the neurocognitive bases of autism spectrum disorder. Her work examines the role of multisensory processing in social-communication difficulties and in everyday behaviors.|
|Patrick Davies||Professor Davies’ research interests lie in children's socioemotional adaptation and maladaptation within the context of close interpersonal relationships especially in family contexts.|
|David Dodell-Feder||Professor Dodell-Feder's research aims to understand the processes that contribute to healthy and disordered social functioning, and their improvement, with a particular focus on schizophrenia spectrum disorders.|
|Laura Elenbaas||Professor Elenbaas studies how children think about people and the social world. Research in her lab examines children's perceptions of social inequalities, experiences of social exclusion, the development of stereotypes, and reasoning about rights.|
|Andrew Elliot||Professor Elliot’s research focuses on approach and avoidance motivation, achievement motivation, social motivation, and well-being.|
|Marie-Joelle Estrada||Professor Estrada's research focuses on interpersonal relationships – specifically romantic relationship initiation and progression over time. Additionally, she also studies how relationships interact with gender, marketing, and health-related concerns.|
|Jeremy Jamieson||Professor Jamieson's research focuses on how stress influences emotions, decisions, and performance, and how emotions can be regulated to optimize stress responses.|
|Bonnie Le||Professor Le's research focuses on well-being in interpersonal relationships with a focus on the role of emotion and motivation.|
|Christopher Niemiec||Professor Niemiec is interested in human motivation, emotion, and personality in social contexts. His research uses self-determination theory to examine the nature and functional significance of autonomy in a variety of life's domains.|
|Harry Reis||Professor Reis’ research interests involve social interaction and close relationships.|
|Ronald Rogge||Professor Rogge’s research focuses on understanding romantic relationships, from the early stages of dating to marriage.|
|Karl Rosengren||Professor Rosengren's work focuses on cognitive and motor development and how these interact over the course of development. His work also focuses on how children reason about the world and how cognitive and motor factors influence how they act on the world.|
|Judith Smetana||Professor Smetana’s research examines adolescent-parent relationships and development in cultural contexts; children's moral and social reasoning; and development of parenting beliefs.|
|Lisa Starr||Professor Starr's research focuses on the origins and consequences of depression and anxiety in adolescents and adults. Particular emphases include understanding the interface between psychopathology and the social environment and delineating complex, reciprocal, and interactive relationships between interpersonal, cognitive, and biological risk factors and internalizing symptoms.|
|Melissa Sturge-Apple||Professor Sturge-Apple’s research focuses on family processes, parental functioning, and child development guided by theoretical conceptualizations derived from developmental psychopathology, self-regulation frameworks, evolutionary developmental theories, and parenting process models.|
|Sheree Toth||Professor Toth is the Director of Mt. Hope Family Center. Her research interests are broadly focused in the field of developmental psychopathology. She is especially interested in the processes and mechanisms that contribute to the adaptation of children who are confronted by significant psychosocial adversity. In particular, her work addresses the development of children who have experienced maltreatment or who have been reared by a depressed caregiver. Dr. Toth is also committed to the evaluation of preventive interventions for high risk populations.|
|Miron Zuckerman||Professor Zuckerman's research concerns psychology of religion, economic and gender inequality, and topics related to well-being.|