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Psychology Faculty Research

Faculty Research


Dr. Amy Bucher’s lab
explores how language, specifically expressive writing, and behavior change are related. Using a language analysis software program, we hope to discover how word choice may indicate motivation to change. Previous studies found that the analysis of language can inform about people's moods, whether or not a person is lying and certain types of writing can even facilitate healing from trauma.

Dr. Leah Gensheimer’s research group involves the application of scientific methods to understand and address pervasive everyday problems at the individual and community levels, and to inform best practices. Current projects focus on the scholarship of teaching and learning (e.g., promoting college academic success, professional development, and academic standards and honesty). Other areas of interest include children and youth development and social justice issues.

Dr. Heather Noble’s research focuses upon cognition, including how it is understood and how it is measured.  Current projects include field research for the development of cognitive, achievement, and memory tests.  She assists with the process of collecting data to norm new editions of standardized tests that are reliable, valid, and multiculturally sensitive measures.   

Dr. Marcia Pasqualini heads the Emotions Laboratory, and her research interests relate to the psychophysiological aspects of emotions of people in social interactions. Specific research topics include public speaking anxiety, psychophysiological and facial synchrony in dyads, and individual differences in emotional reactivity. Students have the opportunity to use Mindware BioLab to measure heart rate variability, impedance and skin conductance; Noldus Observer for synchronized behavioral observations; and Nexus-10 for neurofeedback/biofeedback studies.

Dr. Dominick Scalise’s Counseling Psychology research group studies the major pillars that have supported the field historically including an emphasis on: human strengths and potentials, career development, socially responsible attention to the person-context interaction, efficient counseling interventions. Recent projects have included a focus on the career adjustment of women who are early career psychologists and the perceptions of student athletes' sense of belonging to a university campus.

Dr. Regina Staves' research looks at secondary traumatic stress/compassion fatigue in those working in the mental health and related fields with clients who have experienced complex trauma. Other areas of interest are the efficacy of restorative practices, social justice, attachment in children and social/emotional development.

Dr. Jordan Wagge's Cognition Laboratory research group studies food cognition. In the lab, students study how cognitive process such as language, memory, perception, and attention are associated with food and eating.

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View AU Open House

View AU Open HouseOctober 20 • 9 a.m. • Whitfield Center

See everything Avila has to offer at our upcoming ViewAU Open House. Chat with Admissions and current students, take in program information from faculty advisors and enjoy a tour of beautiful campus. Enjoy lunch – compliments of the Office of Admission.

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Celebrate Missouri Graduate Education Week 2018

missouri graduate education week and adult and graduate studies open house

missouri graduate education week

Celebrate Missouri Graduate Education Week with us from October 15-18 in Marian Center lobby from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. for a giveaway and learn more about our upcoming open house

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