The following shows all potential Psychology Research Project Supervisors for 2013. Please note that this information is now being updated by supervisors for the 2013 cohort of honours students.
Use the links bellow to filter the Supervisors to a particular Research Area:
My research uses a combination of behavioural (reaction time/ accuracy), physiological (EMG, autonomic responses) and self-report measures.
In 2013, I will supervise Honours students in a nominated area under the following. I am happy to discuss options under these areas:
1) Empathy/ processing of facial emotions
2) Implicit prejudice reduction
3) The role of stimulus modality in attentional modulation of the startle eyeblink reflex
My research interests span psychological factors within the criminal justice system. In particular, I am interested in jury decision-making, particularly surrounding child witnesses and court processes, as well as perceptions of procedural justice and legitimacy in both policing and the court system. Related to this, I also have a developing interest in partnerships in policing and how social psychological factors may play a role in determining the effectiveness and cooperativeness of those involved in these partnerships.
My research is primarily concerned with links between neural processing and conscious perceptual experience. Precisely what neural operations result in us 'seeing'?
One of my specific research themes is time perception. Different sensory experiences can be mediated by relatively independent systems, like vision and audition. So what processes allow us to judge the relative timing of different types of event? How does the human brain encode the duration of a single sensory event?
Another major theme relates to sensory integration. Neural analyses can be relatively independent, like those for colour and movement. Yet we have apparently unified experiences. What processes are responsible for this sensory binding?
For further details, please consult my home page
I have projects for Honours students in the following areas.
1. Beliefs about the future of society, particularly the effects of climate change and religion
2. Subtle forms of dehumanization and their consequences
3. Conceptions of what it means to be human
I am also willing to negotiate supervision with students on projects that do not fit neatly into these areas, but are on similar topics.
I am particularly interested in a couple of key areas of social psychology, firstly racism and intergroup relations, and secondly sex and gender relations.
This year I am working on a number of projects with Matt Hornsey looking at the impact of the rejection of intergroup apologies, how being extremely principled can make you wary of imposters, and how intergroup emotions, such as collective guilt and shame, work to affect how people from different groups interact with one another. In addition to this we have a number of projects looking at predictors of women's sexual pleasure, and what social factors are related to feeling guilty about vs. enjoying sex.
Honours students who work with me may choose to work in one of these areas, or, of course, pitch a project in a related area!
As a supervisor, I would focus on weekly meetings, early data collection, and early drafts of written work.
See you this year!
Helena R. M. Radke
I am happy to supervise students in any of the follow areas:
1) Dehumanization: This work focuses on the different ways that people can be dehumanized within everyday contexts, taking the perspective of both the targets of dehumanization, and also the perpetrators. This includes research which investigates the dehumanizing effects of social ostracism and computer mediated interactions such as video games.
2) Meat-eating: Focusing on the 'meat-paradox' this work asks the question of how people can both love animals and love meat! Specifically the work demonstrates that people deny moral rights and mental qualities to animals they eat and this results from processes of dissonance, categorization, framing and is increased when people enjoy eating meat.
3) Postive consequence of physical pain: This research aims to explore the different ways that physically painful experiences may produce benefits for individuals.
4) Social expectancies for emotional experience: In this research we investigate the effects of perceived expectations that people shouldn't feel sad. Daily we are reminded that feeling sad and depressed is an undesirable state, is potentially an illness, and is in many ways representative of failure. We show that these messages prime people to feel bad when they feel sad, ironcially leading to increased negative emotions such as depression and anxiety.
If you're looking for an Honours Supervisor and would like to talk to me, just write me an email: email@example.com
Below you'll find some project outlines that are good examples of the kind of projects I'm pursuing. You do not have to choose one of these projects, and you can can definitely make up your own project, but experience has shown that the outcome is better if the project is within my area of expertise (Attention and Eye Movement Control). The choice of the Honours project and your workload depends, amongst other things, on your goals, interests, commitment and time contraints (relative to pre-existing skills). If you'd like to know more, let's set up a meeting -- email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Honours Projects for 2013
1. Emotional Faces in Visual Search: Why do we find angry faces faster than friendly faces? (in collaboration with Ottmar Lipp).
In visual search, an angry face is detected faster among friendly faces than vice versa, a friendly face among angry faces. This 'anger superiority effect' has been attributed to the fact that angry faces are more relevant to survival. However, there is some indication that this effect may instead be due to salient perceptual characteristics of angry faces, such as an open mouth and the visibility of teeth. In the present study, we'll use eye tracking to measure which regions attract a person's gaze. The results will allow new insights into the question of whether the anger superiority effect is driven by perceptual or emotional factors.
2. fMRI study: Visual Search for Angry and Friendly Faces.
In visual search, an angry face can be found faster than a friendly face: Is this due to the fact that evolution has equipped us with a threat detector that signals the presence of potentially threatening stimuli in the environment? We sincerely doubt this explanation and instead favour a perceptual explanation. According to our perceptual grouping account, angry faces can be found faster because they have salient perceptual properties that faciliate search. In the present study, brain imaging techniques will be used to disentangle emotional and perceptual factors in the search asymmetry. Critical questions that we will assess are: 1. Can emotional faces differentially activate fear-relevant brain regions, such as the amygdala? 2. Does activity in these brain areas correlate with search performance, or is search performance more closely correlated with activity in "purely visual" brain areas?
3. How does Similarity affect Visual Search?
Visual Search is one of the most frequent activities in everyday life. Current models of visual search heavily rely on target-nontarget similarity to explain the difference between efficient search -- where we can immediately find the sought-after item -- and inefficient search -- where it takes a long time to find the target. However, surprisingly few studies have systematically investigated effects of similarity on visual search. In this study, we will systematically vary the similarity of target and nontargets while people search for a colour target and we meausure people's eye movements. The results will give us a better understanding how and to what extent similarity really influences visual search.
I am interested in research relating to supporting parents who are parenting in vulnerable or complex circumstances. In particular, I am interested in the impact of life-threatening illness in children (e.g., cancer, cardiac disease) on parent wellbeing and parenting practices and investigating the role of parenting interventions in improving health outcomes for seriously ill children.
I am also interested in research relating to parenting during the adolescent years.
I currently have projects looking at parenting in the context of childhood cancer and the role of parenting interventions in child and adolescent mental health settings.
I have potential honours projects exploring the impact of childhood cancer on the parent-adolescent relationship, parenting practices and child behaviour.
A potential project is also available investigating the communication patterns and approaches used by parents and adolescents during the transition to adulthood and the impact of these communication strategies on the parent-adolescent relationship and development of autonomy and self regulation in late adolescence/early adulthood.
I am interested in the development and evolution of cognition and can supervise honours students in developmental or comparative projects.
In our comparative lab group we are investigating the cognitive abilities of children and great apes, as well as other species such as elephants. We ask questions about when such capacities emerge in humans and whether humans are unique in their ability to, for example:
Evidence for sophisticated mental skills in great apes suggests a common capacity among these species for mental representation, a capacity which is shared with children of around two-years of age. This has important implications for reconstructing primate cognitive evolution and understanding the human mind.
Young children are tested here in the Early Cognitive Development Centre in the School of Psychology. Studies are conducted with chimpanzees, orangutans, gorillas, gibbons, and other primates at various zoos in Australia, the USA and Indonesia.
My research interests span both clinical and social psychology.
In 2013, I am interested in supervising projects on social isolation in depression. Suggested projects include a) looking at attribution styles in depression, and how these are influenced by social group memberships and context; and b) how people can be helped to join social groups, and whether this can prevent or treat depression.
I have places for two Honours students to join my lab. My research focuses on brain function which underlies the selection and readiness for action and the role of the human "mirror" system in the perception and imitation of actions and gestures.
Research projects will use methods of functional brain imaging (fMRI) or EEG event-related potentials to examine the perception of observed hand actions, or the links between attention and the readiness for action.
I would be interested in supervising projects in the following areas:
(1) Lexical access in speech production.
How do we produce spoken words? Almost all theoretical models propose that this involves two key processing stages including the selection of a semantically and syntactically appropriate word and retrieval of that word’s phonological word form.
(2) Embodied language
‘Embodied language’ theories assume conceptual representations of words are grounded in the perceptual and motor systems responsible for performing associated actions. For example, comprehending the word 'punch' might necessarily involve the hand/arm sensorimotor system, as might comprehending the word 'hammer'.
Past tense generation of regular (watch-watched) and irregular (catch-caught) verbs is central to theoretical models of inflectional morphology.
Sidney Dekker (PhD Ohio State University, USA, 1996) is currently Professor at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia, where he runs the Safety Science Innovation Lab. He is also Honorary Professor of psychology at The University of Queensland. Previously, he was Professor of human factors and system safety at Lund University in Sweden, where he directed the Leonardo da Vinci Laboratory for Complexity and Systems Thinking, and learned to fly the Boeing 737, working part-time as an airline pilot out of Copenhagen. He has won worldwide acclaim for his groundbreaking work in human factors and safety, and is best-selling author of, most recently, Just Culture (2012), Drift into Failure (2011), Patient Safety (2011), and Behind human error (2010). His latest book is Second Victim: Error, guilt, trauma and resilience (2013).
Possible project topics:
I am likely to be supervising three honours students in 2013. If you are interested in one of the ongoing projects below, and can attend the weekly Applied Psychology lab group meetings at 1pm on Fridays, you are welcome to apply.
a) Social identity theory and health / mental health: disadvantaged adults joining a community activity group - the Reclink Logan project
b) Process of change in psychosocial measures during residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation - the Logan House Therapeutic Community project
c) How do people use music to regulate their moods? Investigation of individual variables, music related variables, and psychological mechanisms. Possible recruitment of a clinical sample.
I am a Research Fellow in the Parenting and Family Support Centre. My interest is in the broad impact of quality parenting on important developmental outcomes for children, and the use of the evidence-based parenting program, Triple P, as a means of experimentally testing this issue. I am also interested in the parenting experiences of special groups of parents, particularly those parents who are separated from their children for large periods of time due to the nature of their work commitments (e.g., parents working as FIFO or DIDO workers in the mining industry, parents in the defence force), and how this information can be used to design consumer-responsive interventions for such parents.
My main focus is the psychology of environmental sustainability. I’m interested in understanding the determinants of pro-environmental decisions and developing evidence-based strategies for promoting more sustainable behaviours. My current research includes projects investigating how to communicate effectively about climate change, understanding public responses to alternative water sources, the role of norms in influencing pro-environmental behaviour, and promoting workplace pro-environmental behaviour.
I am currently overseas and won't be able to attend the Honours meet-and-greet on Wednesday 6 February. If you would like to chat about possible supervision please send me an email!
My research interests centre around threat, coping, and motivation. At a broad level, I am interested in how people cope with adversity and how they can motivate and regulate themselves to achieve their goals.
I have several projects in mind for this year, and would like to have keen, motivated Honours students work on the following topic(s):
Communication: Does who we are communicating to change the way we communicate? What factors result in the most effective communication?
Energy: Can the groups we identify with "fuel" us to achieve our best? How do groups give us the energy to achieve our goals?
Space: How does the physcial space we operate in affect our performance? Are some environments more facilitating than others?
This is just a small selection of the projects I will be working on this year. Please contact me if you would like more details on the other projects I am working on or would like to see some example write-ups of the work I have done in the past. I welcome student input to the broad ideas I have outlined.
As a supervisor I emphasize time management and incremental goal achievement. I work to a schedule and expect my students to do the same. I provide structured guidance throughout the Honours process but value independent thought. I am looking for motivated students who want to do well and are willing to put in the time and effort to do so. I work on professional development and growth with students rather than just "surviving" Honours, so if that sounds like a good fit shoot me an email so we can chat about possible supervision!
In the past, students that I have supervised have investiaged the attitudes of Australians to asylum seekers (2010); the effects of group rejection and how this influences intergroup attitudes in children; the effects of bullying on intergroup behaviours.
In addition to an interest in acculturation and prejudice and discrimination, I am currently also interested in looking at gambling behaviours in young adults and identity and voting behaviour in young voters.
In the work that I do with government, there are also a number of areas that may be of interest to honours students.I am happy to discuss these in more details with interested students.
Broadly, my research is on visual perception. I am particularly interested how the brain generates a vivid representation of the 3-D world from the two 2-D images on the backs of our eyes. If you look at an object and wink your eyes back and forth, you will notice that each of our eyes gets a slightly different view of the world. Our visual system uses these small differences in the images on our retinas to recover information about the 3-D layout of the environment. This is called stereoscopic vision and is the basis of 3-D Movies, Magic Eye stereograms, and many other 3-D visual displays. My theoretical research on stereoscopic vision aims to identify and evaluate possible sources of information contained in the two eyes' images to determine whether or not they contribute to single vision and 3-D perception.
Another interest is to examine binocular processes in the context of 3D-TV and 3D cinema. Viewers frequently complain of fatigue, discomfort and visual artifacts in the displays. My lab is currently investigating two significant binocular processes that underlie major sources of viewer fatigue and image dissatisfaction: binocular fusion mechanisms underlying single/double vision; and how unmatched features in the two eyes are incorporated into a single binocular perception. We use the data from these investigations to inform modifications to 3D content production and subject the modified stereoscopic media to empirical tests of viewer comfort and satisfaction.
In addition to studying how the brain processes information from the two eyes, I am also interested in how it processes information from two or more senses. We live in a multi-sensory world filled with colours, sounds, smells, etc. How does the brain combine all these bits of information to come up with a single sensible representation? In my lab we explore cases where the brain is fooled or biased into choosing one solution over another based on what types of information we provide the observer. A couple of simple demonstrations are available for viewing on my personal homepage (http://www2.psy.uq.edu.au/~grove) under the Research link.
I will likely supervise two honours students in 2013. My research focus is on couple relationships. If you are interested in one of the ongoing projects below, and can attend the weekly couple research lab group meetings at 1pm on Fridays, you are welcome to apply.
a) Relationship values and couple relationship satisfaction in diverse cultural groups. In this work we are examining how values about what constitutes a good relationship vary across cultures, and how those values relate to satisfaction within couple relationships.
b) On the decision to cohabit. This study will examine values people hold about when a couple should cohabit, and how cohabiting couples’ relationship satisfaction is affected by the values they hold.
My major research area is child Protection (Interventions trageting multi-problem high risk parents). One recent aspect of this research is the relationship between physiological measures of stress and parent-child interactional style.
I am also interested in the relationship between Jeffrey Gray's model of personality and psychopathology (depression, anxiety).
Further, I have an interest in the impact of mindflness-based therapies on psychological and physiological functioning.
My research is mainly based around social identity theory, however it does cross-over between clinical, social and organisational psychology with a particular focus on leadership & wellbeing.
This year I am particularly interested in supervising research on obedience or creativity. Interested students should email me (details above) regarding their interests in these areas.
You can see more information about my own research on the School of Psychology's 'Featured Researcher' page or the UQ News webpage.
I would be interested in supervising projects in the following areas:
1. Identity-cognition relationships in aging
Cognitive decline is one of the most significant threats to successful aging, but the nature and degree of decline that people experience can vary considerably. We’re now starting to recognize that social factors, and social group memberships in particular, can influence this pattern; people who are more socially connected have better cognitive reserve and are less prone to cognitive decline. Importantly, it is not simply the case that social groups enhance cognitive health. There are also circumstances in which identification with social groups can be the cause of performance decline (as evident in the stereotype threat literature focusing on memory decline in aging). This research raises a number of questions:
Under what circumstances do social groups enhance and reduce cognitive health?
Do these effects extend to abilities other than memory?
What are the mechanisms supporting these relationships?
Can we reverse the performance decline?
People interested in working in this area could focus on any of these questions in experimental research involving healthy older people.
2. Facilitating learning in healthy aging
Memory decline, among other problems is recognized in medical and neuropsychological literatures as a normal consequence of aging. An important question in the face of such decline, is how we help people to make the most of their learning. In the clinical domain, several instructive techniques — errorless learning and spaced retrieval — have been found to be particularly beneficial adults and older adults with acquired memory impairment. But are these techniques as effective when it comes to managing healthy decline. Students working in this area would evaluate the efficacy of these techniques in healthy older adults to determine how they compare with standard trial-and-error learning and which of these stand the test of time when it comes to remembering information for longer.
3. Prospective memory in healthy aging
In addition to problems with new learning, healthy aging is associated with prospective memory difficulties, or problems remembering to carry out intentions (e.g., remembering to take medication, keeping appointments, buy things from the store). The degree of this impairment has been questioned and strategies to manage them varied. Students interested in this project could investigate factors that influence prospective memory decline or evaluate the efficacy of different strategies (e.g., diary use, Google Calendar) to manage the decline.
In 2013 studies under my supervision will focus on the effects of normal and abnormal ageing (mild cognitive impairment and dementia), integrating recent research in cognitive ageing, social psychology, and affective neuroscience. There would also be scope for interested students to look at similar research questions in the context of schizophrenia. For all of these research populations, specific topics include:
1) Social cognition: Social cognition refers broadly to how people process social information, and is consequently critical for social competency. Most research to date has focused on explicit aspects of social cognition, such as facial affect recognition and theory of mind (ToM). ToM refers broadly to our capacity to understand others’ mental states, and to appreciate that these may differ from our own. In the typical social cognitive paradigm, adults are presented with stimuli and asked to make explicit verbal judgements relating to affective or cognitive state. Studies which have used explicit stimuli of this type typically indicate that older adults experience greater social cognitive difficulties than young, and that clinical populations (such as dementia and schizophrenia) often present with even greater impairment. These difficulties have been argued to have important implications for interpersonal function in each of these groups. However, there is now increased recognition of the need to clarify the basic mechanisms underlying social cognitive function. Recently focus has been placed on the potential roles of implicit (i.e., unconscious) responses – such as rapid facial mimicry, implicit mental state detection and physiological indicators of affective responding. Studies are available which would provide further insights into the nature of implicit ToM, and the circumstances in which this capacity breaks down.
2) Prospective memory: Prospective memory (PM) refers to memory for future intentions such as remembering to take medication and turn off appliances, and is therefore crucial for maintaining healthy and safe independent living. It is therefore of considerable concern that PM is often disrupted in the context of normal adult ageing, and to an even greater extent in mild cognitive impairment and dementia. PM deficits are also a reliable feature of schizophrenia. There is increased recognition of the need to identify the potential mechanisms that underpin PM difficulties, and to assess whether these are amenable to intervention. Evidence now indicates that the type of encoding undertaken may be important. Encoding refers to the process by which memories are formed, and can be manipulated systematically. I am interested in conducting studies that manipulate encoding parameters in the context of Virtual Week, a well validated measure of prospective memory that has been used extensively in studies of normal ageing, as well as various clinical populations.
3) Future thinking: Much of our behaviour in the here-and-now is based on our memory for past experience and our imagination of some future scenario. It is our ability to engage in such mental time-travel that underlies how we plan the future for ourselves, our families and our communities. Preliminary evidence indicates that this capacity is disrupted in normal adult ageing – and to an even greater extent, MCI, dementia and schizophrenia. The aim of this program of research is to clarify whether deficits in foresight – the ability to predict what will happen or what is needed in the future – might underlie some of the functional difficulties seen in each of these groups.
Are you interested in doing applied research that could help save lives or reduce harm to hospital patients? In collaboration with my colleagues, including Mark Horswill and Marcus Watson, I conduct research in the areas of human factors and applied cognitive psychology. Our recent work has included:
In 2013, I have places for two Honours students to join the team under my supervision and collaborate with us on research of this kind. The above projects have raised a number of interesting research questions that could be followed-up in an Honours thesis; however, there would still be ample scope to add your own ideas into the mix if you join us.
Alternatively, you might prefer to pitch your own entirely original research idea in a related area. If so, my research group has access to all of the resources of the Queensland Health Skills Development Centre, including a wide range of state-of-the-art simulation equipment, which could potentially be used in a suitable Honours project. See the following website for photos and descriptions of the facilities, including the virtual reality lab, surgical skills lab, operating theatre, ward, resuscitation bay, etc.: http://www.sdc.qld.edu.au/events/rooms.
If you would like to find out more, feel free contact me to ask questions or arrange an appointment (email is best initially, as I work at multiple locations).
My main research area involves threats to group identity (e.g., threats to national, political or gender identity). Threats may occur from perceptions of discrimination, from acts of criticism, or from the presence of dissenters and impostors within the group. I'm particularly interested in the effect of these threats on how people feel about their own group, about rival groups, and about themselves. I am also interested in the struggle between the will of the individual and the will of the group. How do people change abusive or maladaptive aspects of their group cultures? When do people conform to group pressures and when do they counter-conform? How do people balance their need to belong with thier need to feel different? How do we manage group memberships in an individualistic world?
1. Lots of people die in hospital under circumstances that can be avoided (in fact, more than the number of people who die in road accidents). We're currently working on projects to reduce this death toll by designing and evaluating clinical charts to minimize human error. We have an excellent opportunity to save thousands of lives with this research.
2. Performing surgery requires high levels of expertise and knowledge. We're trying to find ways to train and assess surgeons that will be superior to what current procedures. This work involves the use of medical simulators to train specific psychomotor skills and also computer-based tools to teach very specific skills like the recognition of dangerous polyps in the bowel. The importance of this work is hard to overestimate.
3. We developed a hazard perception training package for young drivers in conjunction with Queensland Transport - and preliminary data indicates that it has a huge beneficial effect on drivers' hazard perception response times and actually changes what people are looking at in our driving simulator. However, many unanswered questions remain, for example, how long the training effect lasts for, do people need booster training sessions, which components of the training work the best, and how to persuade drivers to take the training in the first place. Help us find out the answers to these questions and save lives!
My research focuses on the following general questions:
(1) How do people experience different emotions to inequality and injustice (e.g., sympathy, scorn, or anger); and what are the implications of these emotions for political attitudes? My recent work in this area focuses on reactions to representations of terrorism, as well as reactions to group-based discrimination that is considered legitimate (e.g., denying gay couples the right to adopt children).
(2) What makes people decide to get involved in different types of political activities (e.g., donating money, protest actions)?
(3) How can universities and organizations implement effective affirmative action and equal opportunity programs to increase diversity?
I would like to supervise students who are interested in one or more of these general questions. My plan is to develop an Honours-size project with each student that is tailored to both of our interests.
I'm interested in supervising projects looking at:
How economic prosperity hardens attitudes towards minorities
Groups openly advocating anti-immigrant sentiments (such as Extreme Right Parties, ERPs) have made a remarkable comeback in recent years in OECD countries. This trend can even be witnessed in countries where multiculturalism was once celebrated as a core value defining the national identity.
Attempts to understand the rise of support for anti-immigrant parties have so far focused on the idea that hard times produce harsh attitudes towards minorities. In particular, when the economy is stagnating and immigrant numbers are on the rise, competition for scarce resources may become salient, leading to more negative attitudes towards minorities. We do not dispute that there is a relationship between economic prosperity and anti-immigrant sentiments. However, our own experimental pilot data and an analysis of the rise of anti-immigrant parties in various European countries provides support for another effect: we have observed thateconomic prosperity can also produce harsh attitudes towards minorities.
There are two research questions in particular that students will be encouraged to look at:
My general areas of research include:
1. stress and coping in the workplace;
2. employee adaptation to organizational change;
3. organizational climate and morale;
4. employee health, satisfaction, and performance.
In 2013, I have two specific research projects for honours students to be involved in and make their own contribution towards:
Project 1: An experiment investigating whether task control is a useful stress-buffer during a stressful work task and whether certain personality traits moderate the effectiveness of task control as a stress-buffer.
Project 2: An experiment investigating the effects of various rewards/incentives on anxiety and performance during a stressful work task and whether certain personality traits moderate these effects.
I have research interests in:
Psychological factors in injury and rehabilitation; posttraumatic stress in adults and children; early psychosocial intervention following trauma; childhood traumatic brain injury and sequelae; childhood burns; adult whiplash; acute to chronic pain transition; interdisciplinary health research.
Action observation; integration of vision and touch; how ownership (of objects) modifies our behaviour and our attention within the environment. Psychology Honours Projects 2013: *Humans are social animals who rely on one-to-one and group interactions for physical and cultural survival. For these interactions to be successful, we need to integrate information from the environment (vision, touch), as well as meaning: do the objects in the environment belong to me or to someone else? Then we need to 'represent' to ourselves each other's actions to understand their meaning. We have cognitive mechanisms for both action observation and for analysisng attributes such as ownership. *In the Perception and Action lab, we are currently investigating the mechanisms of action observation and object ownership. To do this, we use reaction time paradigms and motion capture and analysis techniques. Healthy participants will be required to identify the actions (measured with button-press responses) or actually produce the actions (measured with motion capture and analysis equipment).
I have two mayor research interests (most likely too many for my own good). They share the common theme of ‘Emotion’ and fall into the broad areas of biological, clinical, or social psychology. They are addressed experimentally using a range of methodologies (psychophysiology: EMG, autonomic responses; reaction time based computer tasks; self report).
• The acquisition and extinction of fear: It is now accepted that fear and other emotions (positive ones as well) are learned. However, the characteristics of this learning (under which conditions does it occur Mallan, Lipp, & Libera, 2008; how is it influenced by cognition Mallan, Sax, & Lipp, 2009; Rowles et al., 2012; how does emotional learning relate to signal learning, Lipp, & Purkis, 2005) are not well understood. We have used traditional fear conditioning paradigms (see for instance Rowles et al., 2012) and evaluative learning paradigms (e.g., Lipp & Purkis, 2006) to answer these questions.
• The processing of facial expressions of emotion are processed (Lipp et al., 2009a): Some facial expressions of emotion are said to be processed preferentially relative to others (face in the crowd effect) and even under conditions of minimal stimulus input. However, there are also reports that question this claim. Moreover, little is known about the manner in which emotional expressions are processed (holistically vs. feature based, Lipp et al., 2009b) and how processing of facial expressions interacts with the processing of other facial characteristics (age, sex, race etc; see Karnadewi & Lipp, 2011; Craig, Lipp, & Mallan, in press).
That is sort of what we did over the last years and that is where it is going to go in the near future. I'd suggest that you have a quick look over the papers that I mentioned to get a general idea what it is all about (I only used our papers to illustrate the methods we are using – let me know if you have difficulty finding something). Do not worry too much about the details - ask yourself what topic/approach you might be interested in working on.
For more details – e-mail me or see the web site of the 'Emotion, Learning, and Psychophysiology Laboratory': http://www2.psy.uq.edu.au/~landcp/
I have a strong research interest in biologically-based personality traits (specifically using Jeffrey Gray's Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory, RST) and addictive behaviour. Honours projects in 2013 will primarly focus on personality measurement and theory-testing in laboratory settings and using online surveys. Other potential areas for projects include eating behaviour (over-consumption), hazardous drinking and social exclusion. Honours students will be required to attend the weekly Individual Differences and Applied Psychology Interest Group on Friday afternoons.
My research interests primarily involve understanding the visuo-motor control of our actions. More specifically, I am investigating how people can successfully interact with moving objects despite rather long neuro-mechanical delays. I am also interested in the role of motion perception in the planning and control of skilled motor actions. Another recent area of research interest involves examining the effects of loud auditory stimuli on corticospinal excitability during preparation for anticipatory timing actions.
While unlikely, there might be something of interest in my webpage. So check it out and contact me if you want to have a chat.
My interests are in Mental Health, Mental Ill-health, Self-injury and Suicide as outcomes of Mental Health problems, and mechanisms for how suicide and self-injury occur. Latterly we have been intrigued as to why people give up their suicidal ideation, or give up self-injury. All of this has involved studies of psychological mechanisms - including alexithymia, affect regulation, coping, perfectionism and resilience. In addition we have considered social support and connectedness as factors. We have now published several studies, completed by honours students, in international journals. More recently we have completed several RCTs of emerging therapies in self-injury/self-harm.
I am interested in supervising theses on the topics of:
1. Perceptions of sexual assault victims and specifically exploring issues around:
2. The recruitment and retention of blood and blood product donors. Specifically:
If you would like to discuss any of these areas/topics with me then please get in touch. Additional information about these areas of research (and others!) can be found at: http://www.psy.uq.edu.au/research/appliedsocial/
My interests are within the broad area of Cognitive Neuroscience, with a particular emphasis on understanding the neural bases of selective attention, multisensory integration and the interface between perception and action. If offered a place you will become part of a large research group, with several fellow honours students plus numerous research fellows and research support staff. You will have an opportunity to learn one or more of the following experimental methods: functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG), transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), psychophysics and human neuropsychology. I am particularly keen to hear from students who wish to continue with a career in cognitive neuroscience research.
There are several possible projects that students can undertake in my lab in 2013. I will explain these in more detail in person at the Honours "Meet and Greet" session on 6th February, or you can contact me directly via email to find out more.
Honours Projects for 2013:
In 2013, I will be offering a range of projects. Some of these projects will be co-supervised with post-doctoral research fellows in my laboratory.
Project 1: “Using brain oscillations to measure attention and decision-making”
How does the brain deal with the challenge of sharing information across widespread networks? Recent work has suggested that neural oscillations – patterns of co-ordinated activity linking distant brain areas – have a key role to play. This project will use scalp-recorded electroencephalography (EEG) and “frequency tagging” of visual stimuli to determine whether neural oscillations are important for selective attention and decision-making.
This project would suit someone who is interested in learning about brain networks and how to record and analyse brain signals using EEG.
Project 2: “The Brain that Changes Itself”
So we now know that the organisation of the adult brain can change, right? But how? And what factors influence this so-called plasticity? This project will use a non-invasive brain stimulation technique known as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to investigate plasticity in the human attentional network.
This project would suit someone who is interested in the role of attention in modulating brain plasticity, and who wishes to learn how to use TMS to safely stimulate the cerebral cortex. (Project to be co-supervised with Dr Marc Kamke, QBI.)
Project 3: “Can activation of the adrenergic system enhance brain plasticity?”
This project will investigate whether boosting the activity of the adrenergic system can make plasticity induced with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) more effective and long-lasting.
This project would suit someone who is interested in the biological factors that influence the occurrence and timecourse of brain plasticity. As part of the project you will learn how to administer TMS in human participants. (Project to be co-supervised with Dr Martin Sale, QBI.)
Project 4: “Is brain plasticity influenced by the predictability of sensory events?”
It is well known that our brains respond differently to uncertain or random events than to predictable and ordered ones. This study will investigate whether increasing the entropy (or uncertainty) of stimuli associated with TMS-induced “artificial” plasticity in human motor cortex influences the extent and duration of induced changes.
This project would suit someone who is interested in the extrinsic (environmental) factors that influence the occurrence and timecourse of brain plasticity. As part of the project you will learn how to administer TMS in human participants. (Project to be co-supervised with Dr Martin Sale, QBI.)
For further information on the kind of research conducted in my laboratory, see my homepage on the School of Psychology website.
**NOTE: Studies using EEG, MRI and TMS are conducted in relatively small laboratory spaces and require a certain level of physical dexterity on the part of the experimenter. If you are uncertain about your capacity to operate in such an environment, please contact me for more information before nominating me as a supervisor.**
I am interested in the following areas of jury decision-making:
Finally I am interested in the ways in which group membership impacts on thinking about the self; this area is primarily focused on how group membership influences coping with stress.
Please feel free to get in touch with me if you want to discuss any of these areas or related topics that you are interested in.
Find out more: http://www.psy.uq.edu.au/research/appliedsocial/
Cognitive psychology; attention - broadly defined, including lab testing of theory, lapses of attention (e.g. daydreaming), development of attentional skill (e.g. meditation); cross-cultural psychology; psychology of teaching & learning in the university context.
I have several places for highly motivated students who are interested in one of the following topics:
1) fMRI on topics in Social Neuroscience or Attention. Students will get the opportunity to learn how to collect and/or analyse functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) data. Students will have the rare opportunity to have access to this amazing technique which we use to look at brain activity in humans. We are lucky to have a new 3T MRI scanner on campus which we can use.
2) Brain imaging meta-analysis on topics in Social Neuroscience or Attention. Students will learn Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) meta-analysis technique to look at consistent brain activation across different imaging studies.
3) Testing patients that suffered from a stroke with neuropsychological or neuroimaging techniques.
Students that are interested in learning more about these projects can contact me by email: email@example.com.
My research looks at parenting and parenting interventions to prevent and treat child behavioural and emotional problems. I am particularly interested in childhood chronic illnesses, like asthma and eczema and the role parents play in managing these health conditions. Honours projects in 2013 will look at interactions between parents and children with chronic illnesses; assessment of child behavioural and emotional adjustment; evaluations of the efficacy of a brief mealtime program for parents of young children.
Organisational and cognitive psychology: Work motivation; learning & performance; effects of positive and negative emotional states (incl. stress, workload & fatigue as well as engagement & enthusiasm).
Developmental psychology; Quality of life issues for children with chronic health conditions; children and the Law - in particular issues relating to young children’s suggestibility and reliability and credibility as eyewitnesses; theory of Mind; psychological consequences to parental use of physical punishment; quality of life and chronic health conditions in young children and adolescents.
Students who work with me undertake projects that typically focus on the development of social-cognitive skills with a broad view on their possible role in young children’s attainment and transmission of culturally bound behaviours.
Some possible projects for 2013 include (but are not limited to):
I am also interested in the impact media exposure has on young children, and in particular the effect and influence of product-based TV programming (e.g., Ben 10; Transformers; Lego Ninjago).
Some possible projects for 2013 include (but are not limited to):
My research uses both survey and experimental approaches to explore interdisciplinary questions fundamental to management, public policy, criminology, and/or social behaviour more broadly. Specific areas of focus in my research that may be suitable for an honours project include (but are not necessarily limited to):
Further details/information can be found on my staff website:
Health and Clinical psychology: positive psychology; Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), mindfulness, clinical applications of stress and coping theory to adaptation to chronic illness and caregiving
Honours students will have the opportunity to work on one of two ready-made projects. There is scope for the student to contribute to the design of these projects. Testing will start at the end of March.
Project 1: An experiment investigating whether task control is a useful stress-buffer during a stressful work task and whether certain personality traits moderate the effectiveness of task control as a stress-buffer.
Project 2: An experiment investigating the effects of various rewards/incentives on anxiety and performance during a stressful work task and whether certain personality traits moderate these effects.
Students should note that although I am currently based at QUT, I work at UQ every Friday. On the 1st of July 2013 I move over to UQ and will be here full-time.
I will be available to supervise one honours student in 2013. My research focus is on couple relationships, adult attachment theory, and mindfulness (theory and intervention). If you are interested in one of these broad areas, and can attend the weekly couple research lab group meetings at 1pm on Fridays, you are welcome to apply.
Principle research areas include topics related to Cognitive or Executive Control, Attention, and Cognitive Modeling. Specific topics of ongoing research include Modeling Sequential Task Performance (e.g. playing an instrument, reading), Task Switching, Visual Attenion, Visual Search, Attentional Capture, Multi-task processing, as well as the neural systems mediating the control of attention. Also involved in research on applied topics such as workload, fatigue, human scheduling, as well as the application of theory and results to applied problems in aviation, human-computer interaction, and medicine.
In 2013 I have space for 2 Honours students to be involved in a larger clinical neuropsychology study. The focus of the project is the executive component of language generation with both healthy controls (older and younger) and neurological patients. Executive functions enable individuals to behave appropriately by implementing a complex set of processes that include evaluation, planning and the generation of novel responses. This will suit students with an interest in cognition, neuropsychology and clinical psychology. If this fits you email me detailing your interests and to set up a meeting (firstname.lastname@example.org).
My research interests are in the use of non-invasive brain stimulation, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), to induce plasticity in the human brain. More specifically, I am interested in understanding how we can most effectively induce plasticity in human cortex, so that its use in therapy can be maximised. My research uses TMS, EMG and MRI.
In 2013 I will be looking to supervise up to two highly motivated students to undertake their Honours research project at the Queensland Brain Institute. These projects will be:
1) Can activation of the adrenergic system enhance the plastic effects induced with TMS?
This project will investigate whether boosting the activity of the adrenergic system can make plasticity induced with TMS more effective and long-lasting.
2) Does the predictability (or randomness) of the stimuli involved in inducing long-term potentiation-like changes in human motor cortex influence how effectively plasticity is induced? It is well known that our brains respond more effectively to uncertain, random events rather than predictable and ordered ones. This study would investigate whether increasing the entropy (or uncertainty) of stimuli associated with “artificial” plasticity induction in human motor cortex influences the effectiveness of plasticity induction.
These projects would involve a lot of hands-on action in the TMS lab at QBI and would suit someone who is passionate about neuroscience.
Please note: This study will require students to use TMS. For those unfamiliar with TMS, it requires the operator (student) to hold a relatively heavy coil over the participant’s head for up to 30 minutes or so. Most people find this a little challenging and strenuous initially, but most quickly adapt. If, however, you have a history of back, shoulder or neck pain, the projects listed above may not be suitable for you.
Feel free to email me (email@example.com) if you are potentially interested to undertake one of these projects.
COGNITION, PERCEPTION, AND HUMAN FACTORS. In my research group we are using theoretical knowledge of perception, action, attention and memory to better design the fit between people and especially demanding work environments (critical care medicine, transportation, military contexts, etc.). Some sample thesis topics follow -- many others are possible. Ultimately, the thesis topic and scope are decided collaboratively with each honours student.
1. Prospective memory, interruptions, and distractions
Concern about the impact of workplace interruptions and distractions is very topical in basic and applied psychology right now. Many kinds of safety critical work (aviation, healthcare) require people to manage multiple threads of work at the same time. What effect do distractions and interruptions have on people's work, and is there a need for remedies of some kind? Theories of prospective memory and individual differences in cognitive abilities have helped us make some progress in the area, but much more work needs to be done. Your honours thesis could be part of that work - in the healthcare field or in the lab.
2. Visual attention and inattentional blindness with head-mounted displays
Do people show inattentional blindness to certain kinds of stimuli on head-mounted displays (HMDs) when they're busy doing other tasks? Or vice-versa? With the advent of wearable personal technologies such as Google's Glasses, we need to understand the full impact of HMDs on visual attention. We have been investigating this problem in full-scale medical simulation environments and also in controlled laboratory investigations. In the simulation, we noticed differences in how effectively anesthetists using an HMD detected changes in digital information compared with certain kinds of graphical information--yet the results were the opposite for ordinary screens. In the UQ Usability Laboratory we are now exploring phenomena like these in a series of controlled studies. The results will influence how HMDs are used in healthcare, the military context, and in everyday life. Your honours thesis could be one of those studies.
RESEARCH GROUP AND LABORATORY. See http://www.itee.uq.edu.au/cerg for more information about the work of our research group. We are based in the UQ Usability Laboratory in Level 1 of the McElwain Building--see http://www.uqul.uq.edu.au for a glimpse of our research environment.
RESEARCH EXPERIENCE. If you'd like research experience in our group before starting an honours thesis, or if you'd just like to learn about human factors, you might consider taking PSYC2991 or PSYC2992: see Sanderson entry at http://www.psy.uq.edu.au/current-students/undergraduate/rec/.
General areas of interest: cognitive development in infancy and early childhood; theory of mind; development of knowledge about the human body; development of biological concepts; early numerical knowledge.
I am happy to develop new ideas in these areas with Honours students. I also have several pre-conceived projects for 2013. These are:
(1) in my lab we have naturalistic language data from mothers who "read" a wordless picture book to two of their children; one being typically-developing and the other diagnosed with ASD. The project will be to evaluate whether or not these mothers alter their book narrations as a function of their child's diagnostic status. This project will require additional data collection as well as analysis of the data corpus we currently have.
(2) in a recently published study I found that 18-month-old infants recognise when someone makes an error while counting objects. This indicates that infants recognise violations of the abstract principles of counting, prior to mastering counting behaviour. The published study included correlational data suggesting that exposure to counting is what drives this development. I'd like an Honours student to test this hypothesis with a training study.
(3) a recent study suggested that infants are 'prepared' to fear natural predators, such as snakes. This is evident in their tendency to visually fixate on videos of snakes compared to other animals, when they are also being exposed to a fearful voice. The visual preference for snakes is not present when the voice is neutral. I would like a student to test whether or not infants are also prepared to fear sharks using a similar paradigm.
Autism Spectrum Disorders; Asperger syndrome; Stepping Stones Triple P - parent training for parents of a child with a disability; emotion recognition and social understanding in children with Asperger syndrome.
I am happy to supervise students on research projects in the broad areas of leadership, citizenship, and health and well-being. Exemplary research projects might examine one of the following issues:
Cognitive development (representational abilities and foresight in young children)
I am interested in the cognitive and affective consequences of causal uncertainty (CU), or doubts about one’s understanding of why things happen. CU is unpleasant and undermines a person’s sense of control. This can lead to negative affect, attempts to improve one's understanding, and avoidant coping. Secondary control can help people cope with CU. There are bidirectional associations between affect and secondary control, meaning that mood manipulations can be used to boost secondary control.
I am also interested in social networking activities and their association with basic need satisfaction, meaning, mindfulness, and absorption in experiences.
Lastly, I study how exposure to other people's goal strivings and outcomes affects our own goals.
I am able to offer two honours students supervision in 2013. My primary areas of research are in obsessive-compulsive disorder and related disorders such as other anxiety disorders and body dysmorphic disorder. I work primarily with children and adolescents, although maintain a small clinical and research practice in working with adults with OCD and related disorders. If you are interested in working within these areas, then you are welcome to apply for one of the projects I am working on this year. You must be able to attend supervision on Mondays or Tuesdays. Please e-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Project 1: will be focussed on children and young people with obsessive-compulsive disorder. It is particularly concerned with difficult behaviours in young people with OCD, the type and frequency of difficult behaviours, and the ways in which parents manage and cope with these behaviours. This project will collaborate with Prof Matt Sanders.
Project 2: will examine the relationships between appearance concerns (i.e dysmorphia), depression and depressive rumination, and anxiety in older adolescents and young adults.
I will be supervising 4-5 honours students in 2013.
In the UQ Social Neuroscience Lab, we use various psychophysiological measures to examine emotional and cognitive process involved in social interactions. Although informed by recent findings in neuroimaging, the research in our laboratory is typically done without people being put into a scanner. To heighten experimental realism, the laboratory has available both interactive software programs and immersive virtual reality equipment so that participants become highly involved in the experimental procedures. Recent studies conducted by students in the lab have examined the effects of being the source or target of ostracism, implicit prejudice and discrimination, trust and motor mimicry, event-related potentials and guilt, and EEG & Emotion.
In 2013, theses on the following topics would be particularly welcome:
(1) hormones (cortisol, testosterone) and perceptions of expressions of crying
(2) how people respond to others who are obese
(3) the effects of Facebook and Twitter use on mindfulness
(4) intergroup schadenfreude
My key research interest is in interpersonal and intergroup communication particulary in the health arena. My research focuses on on communication between health professionals and their patients, and between health professionals in health provider teams. I also research organisational change from a social identity perspective.
Are you interested in doing applied research to improve patient care?
I conduct research in the areas of human factors and applied cognitive psychology. This year, I have places for two Honours students to join the team looking at topics related to:
(1) The design and evaluation of display and patient charts to support clinical decision-making. This includes work with Prof P Sanderson on patient monitoring devices and work with A/Prof M Horswill and Dr Andre Hill on the design of patient charts.
(2) The development of the evidence based clinical training program looking at learning and retention of skills. This includes procedural and surgical skills through to the skills required operate as part of an effective clinical team.
Alternatively, you might prefer to pitch your own entirely original research idea in a related area.
A bit about me as my UQ positions are research only so you are unlikely to have had a lot of interaction with me.
I am the Executive Director of the Queensland Health Clinical Skills Development Service which is the largest clinical skills development service in the world (http://www.sdc.qld.edu.au/tour.htm). The service not only supports training for over 12,000 clinicians each year, we also have incredible facilities to do applied research. I have a continuing A/Prof in the School of Medicine as well as my Honorary A/Prof in Psychology at UQ. I joined the Schools Psychology through the Key Centre for Human Factors in 2002. I have won several awards for innovations and the Jerome Ely Award for the Best Paper in Human Factors.
I am available to supervise honours projects on the school readiness of children with CP in a CP cohort study that we are conducting at the QCPRRC.
I will supervise 2 Honours projects on the following topics in 2013:
1. A daily diary study on the work-home balance of employed mothers: The goal of this project is to gain a better understanding of the relative importance of different types of resources (individual, social and organisational) for managing daily work and home stressors. Outcomes could include daily job engagement, burnout and thriving at work as well as satisfaction with home life.
2. A daily diary study on green employee behaviors: This project aims to investigate interindividual differences and daily events as predictors of pro-environmental behaviours in the workplace. In addition, the relationships between green employee behaviours and other important work behaviours could be examined.
Evolutionary psychology - mate preferences and choices, mate value, physical attractiveness, intelligence, personality, sexual orientation, masculinity-femininity, sexual behaviour, and how these relate to sexual selection and the evolution of the human mind.