Click on lab name to see more information about the lab.
Dr. Michiyo Hirai
Research in the Anxiety Disorders Lab focuses on the etiology, assessment, and treatment of anxiety disorders, particularly Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Phobias. Some of the ongoing research projects include:
Dr. James Aldridge
My general interests deal with contextual influences on perception of situations, and consequent distribution of attention. I am particularly interested in decision making in higher education and faculty motivation.
Basic Memory and Cognitive Processes
Dr. Jerwen Jou
I am interested in all basic human memory and cognitive processes. Currently I am conducting experiments on recognition memory using response time as a dependent measure. Other areas of interest are false memory, judgment and decision making, and serial-order memory.
Behavioral Neuroscience and Psychopathology
Dr. Fred Ernst
Research in the Behavioral Neuroscience and Psychopathology Lab has two components:
Dr. Wendy James-Aldridge
A cooperative project between UTPA and the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville, the Behavior Research Lab trains behavioral observers to collect data using a variety of naturalistic observation techniques to answer questions raised by zoo staff about a variety of species in the zoo’s collection. Recent projects have examined:
Border Experiences Project
Dr. Darrin L. Rogers
The Border Experiences Project research team studies sexual offense, sexual abuse, and related constructs, including sexually aggressive fantasies, sexual coercion experiences, attitudes toward women and relationships, personality traits, etc. We focus especially on the patterns these variables take in the Borderlands of the Rio Grande Valley. In the past few years we have collected data on these and other variables by way of:
The research team consists of highly-motivated undergraduate and graduate students. Team members usually have opportunities to be integrally involved in many aspects of the research, especially if they volunteer for two or more consecutive semesters. Recent activities have included: Data collection; Data entry, coding, and cleaning; Research planning; Data analysis; Preparing posters and other presentations for conferences; Leading teams of other researchers (experienced BEP members); Participating in writing research reports (experienced BEP members)
This area of study is not for everyone. However, if you are interested in volunteering to be a member of the BEP team, please contact Dr. Rogers for an interview.
Clinical and Multicultural
Dr. Alfonso Mercado
Research in the Clinical and Multicultural Lab focuses on the etiology, assessment, and treatment of clinical disorders with the Latino population. Some of the ongoing research projects include:
Dr. Philip Gasquoine
Specializing in investigations of the impact of Spanish/English bilingualism on neuropsychological test scores. (Have also supervised student theses on racism.)
Contextual Behavioral Science
Dr. Maureen Flynn
The Contextual Behavioral Science lab focuses on treatment development research. The goals of this lab are to investigate the effectiveness of a treatment and the processes (mechanism of action) through which the treatment works. In particular, this lab focuses on researching Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and its 6 core processes: acceptance, defusion, self, present moment awareness, values, and committed action.
ACT is a unified model and has been researched in both clinical and nonclinical populations. Some of the areas I am interested in examining ACT processes include but are not limited to:
See http://www.contextualsciencelab.com for more information about the lab.
Social and Political Behavior
Dr. Jason Popan
Our research investigates psychological aspects political engagement and voter turnout. Our goal is to investigate psychological barriers to political participation, particularly among young and low-income individuals, and to provide research findings that will inform interventions aimed at mitigating psychological barriers to political participation.
An additional research focus of our lab is on the effects of civility and reason-based argument during political communication on political attitudes and evaluations of political opposition groups.
Social Cognitive Development
Dr. Amy Weimer
Research in the Social Cognitive Development Lab focuses on examining development among diverse groups of individuals across the life-span, with an emphasis on childhood. A specific research interest is on investigating Theory of Mind (ToM) development, which refers to understanding one’s own and others’ thoughts, beliefs, and other mental states, and the roles such states play in determining behavior. Some of our studies have investigated:
Dr. Mark Winkel
An understanding of the relationship between human social cognition and physiology is the primary focus. This is accomplished by measuring responses such as heart rate, electrical activity of the brain (EEG), electrodermal response, (GSR), electromyography (EMG), pupillary response, and eye blink activity to various social stimuli. Examples of past and present research include social psychophysiology of humor, physiological responses to military training, and compulsive gambling. The lab is located in SBSC 237 and contains the following:
Stress and Health
Dr. Grant Benham
Research in the Stress and Health Lab focuses on how psychological stress affects physical health and factors that might influence this effect. Some of the questions asked include: