HD Faculty Research Interests

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HD Faculty Research Interests

Adam K. Anderson, Associate Professor
Research Areas: Emotion, Cognition, Affective, Social and Cognitive Neuroscience
Dr. Anderson's research is concerned with the many facets of emotion.  A central theme is how emotions are a powerful organizing force on perception, cognition and behavior.  The work undertaken in the lab is highly integrative both conceptually and methodologically, examining emotional experience, facial expression, peripheral and central physiology, genetics and experience/plasticity. Email: aka47@cornell.edu

Charles J. Brainerd, Professor and Department Chair
Research Areas: Cognitive Neuroscience; Memory and Cognitive Development; Mathematical Modeling; Psychology and Law
Dr. Brainerd's research focuses on the relations between memory and higher reasoning processes and on extension of research findings to important applied domains, such as false memory and the law. His is co-developer with another HD Professor, Valerie F. Reyna, of fuzzy-trace theory, an interdisciplinary model of memory and cognition. Email: cb299@cornell.edu

Anthony Burrow, Assistant Professor
Dr. Burrow's research explores the significance of identity development and cultivating a sense of purpose during adolescence and young adulthood. Recent projects have examined how salient aspects of racial identity function as sources of resilience to daily racial stressors, and the extent to which cultivating a meaningful direction in life promotes positive outcomes for youth. Email: alb325@cornell.edu

Marianella Casasola, Associate Professor and Assistant Director of Undergraduate Studies
Research Areas: Infant Cognition, Language Development
Dr. Casasola's research focuses on several aspects of infant cognitive development and early word learning and in particular, the interaction between cognition and early language learning. Some of Dr. Casasola's research, conducted in collaboration with colleagues, has examined infants' understanding of object solidity and infant perception of physical causality. Email: mc272@cornell.edu  Lab: Cornell Infant Studies Laboratory

Stephen J. Ceci, Helen L. Carr Professor of Developmental Psychology
Research Areas: Children and the Law, Intelligence, Developmental Psychology
Dr. Ceci is working on two interrelated topics: The development of intelligence in everyday settings (including transfer of learning), and children's cognitive competence to testify in court. Both lines of research focus on the powerful role of context in these naturalistic settings. Email: sjc9@cornell.edu

Richard A. Depue, Professor and Director of Graduate Studies
Research Areas: Brain and Behavior, Developmental Neuroscience, Emotional Development
Professor Depue's work is on the neurobiology and neurochemistry associated with the structure of personality, emotion, and cognition. He is particularly interested in the personality traits of positive emotionality (extraversion)and Behavioral Stability as they relate to dopamine and serotonin functions, respectively. Finally, the manner in which these systems are modulated by life experiences across the lifespan is addressed. Email: rad5@cornell.edu

Eve D. De Rosa, Associate Professor
Research Areas: Cognitive Development, Attention and Learning, Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience
Professor De Rosa's research examines modulatory effects on attention processes in humans and rats.  In young and older adults, we use behavioral and functional neuroimaging techniques.  And in rats we use pharmacological, immunotoxic lesioning and electrophysiological techniques in behaving rats. Email: edd56@cornell.edu

John J. Eckenrode, Professor
Research Areas: Child Maltreatment, Prevention, Stress and Coping
One of Dr. Eckenrode's research areas is child maltreatment. His research has focused on the characteristics of official child maltreatment reports, the academic effects of child abuse and neglect, and the long-term effects of a program of home visitation on the development of high-risk mothers and their children. Dr. Eckenrode also has a longstanding interest in research focusing on several issues related to stress and coping, particularly the role of social supports. Email: jje1@cornell.edu

Gary W. Evans, Professor, DEA/HD
Research Areas: Life Course Development, Social/Personality Development
Professor Evans is interested in how the physical environment affects the health and well being of children and families. Current research is focused on environmental stress (crowding, noise, housing, commuting), children's environments (housing, schools, daycare, playgrounds), and the developmental consequences of poverty. Email: gwe1@cornell.edu

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Stephen F. Hamilton, Professor
Research Areas: Youth Development, Youth and Work
Professor Hamilton's research focuses on the ecology of adolescent development and the transition to adulthood. He is especially interested in work and community service as opportunities for learning, mentoring, policies and programs that promote youth development, and international comparisons. Email: sfh3@cornell.edu

Cynthia Hazan, Associate Professor
Research Areas: Attachment Processes, Mating Phenomena
The subject of Dr. Hazan's research is human mating, which she studies primarily from the perspective of ethological attachment theory. Her current projects focus on normative attachment processes as well as the general nature and function of attachment bonds. Drawing upon work in the area of social bonding in a variety of mammalian species, she is developing and testing a new theoretical model of what it means--at both the psychological and physiological levels--for two individuals to be attached. Email: ch34@cornell.edu

Tamar Kushnir, Associate Professor
Dr. Kushnir's research examines mechanisms of learning in young children. Her previous work has addressed 1)how children use statistical evidence to learn new causal relations, 2)how new evidence interacts with children's prior causal beliefs, and 3)how causal learning is influenced by children's developing social knowledge and also by their own experience of action. She continues to explore the role that children's developing knowledge - in particular their social knowledge - plays in learning, a question with implications for the study of cognitive development as well as for early childhood education. Email: tk397@cornell.edu Lab: Early Childhood Cognition Laboratory

Corinna Loeckenhoff, Associate Professor
Dr. Loeckenhoff's research focuses on age differences in personality and emotions and their influence on mental and physical health across the life span.  Current research topics include age differences in healthcare choices and the role of personality in health behavior. Email: cel72@cornell.edu Lab: Healthy Aging Laboratory

Barbara C. Lust, Professor
Research Areas: Language Development, Cognitive Development
Dr. Lust's research concerns the study of the child's acquisition of language, studied from a cross-linguistic perspective. Children acquiring more than 20 languages of the world are studied in the Cornell Language Acquisition Lab. Her research program, which is interdisciplinary, seeks both to identify the universals which characterize child language acquisition across all languages, and to explicate the nature of development of language during the time between birth and early childhood. Email: bcl4@cornell.edu Lab: Cornell Language Acquisition Lab

Jane Mendle, Assistant Professor
Research areas: Adolescent psychopathology, puberty
Dr. Mendle is a clinical psychologist who studies adolescent psychopathology, and particularly the emergence of psychological problems over the course of puberty. She has secondary interests in early life stress, behavior genetics, and quantitative modeling.  Current projects include studies of peer relationships and depression in boys at puberty, and associations of puberty and depression in children with histories of early life maltreatment. E-mail: jem482@cornell.edu Lab: Adolescent Transitions Lab

Anthony D. Ong, Associate Professor
Research Areas: Stress, Resilience, and Health
Dr. Ong's research focuses on identifying the multiple pathways through which emotional, psychological, and socio-cultural processes contribute to positive health across the life course. The construct of resilience emerges as a conceptual theme that cuts across many studies. A central goal is to understand how certain individuals show maintenance, recovery, or even improvement in adaptive outcomes despite the presence of challenge and adversity. Email: ado4@cornell.edu

Karl A. Pillemer, Professor
Research Areas: Aging, Elder Abuse, Intergenerational Relationships
Professor Pillemer's research interests center on human development over the life course, with a special emphasis on family and social relationships in middle age and beyond. A major program of research involves family members who provide care to Alzheimer's disease victims, examining the relationships among social network structure, social suppor and psychological well-being. A second major interest is in intergenerational relations in later life, with a focus on determinants and consequences of the quality of adult child -- parent relationships. Email: kap6@cornell.edu

Valerie F. Reyna, Professor
Research Areas: Judgment and Decision Making; Risk and Rationality; False Memory; Aging and Cognitive Impairment; Cognitive Neuroscience
Dr. Reyna's research focuses on dual processes in memory, judgment, and decision making, on how these processes change with age and expertise, and on their implications for risky decision making in law, health, and medicine. She is co-developer with another HD professor, Charles Brainerd, of fuzzy-trace theory, a theory of memory and its relation to higher cognitive processes. Email: vr53@cornell.edu Lab: Laboratory for Rational Decision Making

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Steven S. Robertson, Professor
Research Areas: Infancy, Fetal Development and Motor Development.
Professor Robertson's general research area is developmental psychobiology; he uses a range of techniques to address the relations between the mind and body during development. Specific projects aim to understand the coupling of attention and spontaneous motor activity in very young infants using EEG, eye tracking, and body movement sensors. In collaboration with students, he is currently following a cohort of children studied as infants to assess whether attention-movement coupling in infancy is related to attention problems in childhood. In addition to the work in his own laboratory, he maintains active collaborations with colleagues in developmental psychobiology and applied mathematics. Email: ssr4@cornell.edu Lab: Robertson Infant Lab

Ritch C. Savin-Williams, Professor
Research Areas: Youth and Adolescence, Sexuality, Sexual Minorities
Dr. Savin-Williams' current research interests focus on the normative sexual development of adolescents and youths and on the psychological strength, resiliency, and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youths and adults. Emphasis is placed on differential developmental trajectories among sexual minorities in terms of their identity development, relations with family and peers, romantic relationships, and gender nonconformity. Email: rsw36@cornell.edu

Nathan Spreng, Assistant Professor
Dr. Spreng's research examines large-scale brain network dynamics and their role in cognition. Currently, he is investigating the link between autobiography and imagination, how we conceive of the future, and successful navigation of the social world. These investigations extend to the related processes of memory, cognitive control, and social cognition and the interacting brain networks that support them. Dr. Spreng is also actively involved in the development and implementation of multivariate and network-based statistical approaches to assess brain activity. In doing so, he hopes to better understand the properties of the brain networks underlying complex cognitive processes as they change across the lifespan. Email: rns74@cornell.edu

Robert Sternberg, Professor
Research Areas:  development of intelligence, creativity, wisdom, thinking and learning styles, leadership, love, and hate.  Dr. Sternberg is also interested in higher education.  His studies have spanned five continents. Dr. Sternberg currently is planning to assess his models of ethical reasoning and of organizational change.  He also is interested in extending his work on assessing creativity, common sense, wisdom, and leadership.  He would like further to show that children often have abilities that could be leveraged for success in school if only schools recognized them.  He is writing a book on higher education.  Email: rjs487@cornell.edu

Felix Thoemmes, Assistant Professor
Research Areas: Quantitative methods
Dr. Thoemmes' research interests span several areas of quantitative methods for the social sciences, in particular causal inference, propensity score methods, and structural equation modeling. Specific aims are the extension of causal inference methods to multi-level data, as frequently encountered in educational settings. He is also interested in the development and evaluation of novel quantitative tools. Email: fjt36@cornell.edu  Lab: Quantitative Methods Lab    

Elaine Wethington, Professor
Research Areas: Life Course Development, Health and Behavior, Stress and Coping
Dr. Wethington's research interests are in the areas of stress and the protective mechanisms of social support. Her current projects address: 1) events and changes involving social networks and the sources of support; 2) stressful life events and other crises in midlife and beyond; 3) the positive consequences of life events and other transitions (i.e. the development of maturity and the sense of personal growth; and 4) the assessment of social isolation, community participation, and support derived from religion among older people. Email: ew20@cornell.edu

Wendy Williams, Professor
Research Areas: Intelligence, Academic Success Identification, assessment, and training of practical intelligence and tacit knowledge; influences on intellectual development; academic curriculum development, enrichment, and assessment; creativity training and assessment; prediction of academic success and teacher evaluation; leadership evaluation and development; managerial development and competence. Email: wmw5@cornell.edu

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