Leigh Ann Vaughn

Leigh Ann Vaughn

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology
Faculty, School of Humanities and Sciences

Social Judgment Research Team (Research Team 11)

In spring of 2018, we are (from L to R): Top row: Frankie Zisa, Aryssa Walters, Sarah Lamoureux, Prof. Leigh Ann Vaughn, Christie Flock, and Noah Fisk. Bottom row: Abby Coons, Alane Schmelkin, and Corie Levine.

Research questions for fall 2018 include:

  • How do people imagine they would behave in various interpersonal or ethical situations?
  • How does intergroup competition influence people's subjective well-being and performance?
  • When people view faces from different groups of people, what personality traits do they believe they see in these faces?
  • When are people interested in learning about their strengths?

This team studies how people make sense of their internal states and form social judgments. Students work together – with constant professor-student and student-student mentoring - on all aspects of our research, including reading and writing reaction papers about various aspects of the theoretical background, designing studies, scheduling and running participants, analyzing and interpreting results, and presenting research at conferences.

The structure of our graded work is highly consistent week to week. Almost every week, students run a research session in a lab, recruit for research participants, read an assigned research article, and do 1-2 short writing assignments and one short statistics assignment. We use these assignments as a basis for collaborating on the design and analysis of our research.

Because the course involves doing real research, team involves a degree of risk and flexibility as we work together to figure out how to move ahead with challenges that are complex and lack neat formulations or precise definitions. High-quality and engaged mentoring – by Professor Vaughn of all students and by more senior students of more junior students - is part of what makes this team fun and rewarding.

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