Professor Justin Dainer-Best

   Justin Dainer-Best, Assistant Professor in Psychology

Preston 104 | jdainerbest@bard.edu | CV

Professor Dainer-Best is interested in how positive and negative emotions change the way people think about themselves and the world around them. More broadly, he is interested in the genesis and maintenance of depressed mood. His graduate work focused on identifying the best methods of understanding how people who are depressed think. Professor Dainer-Best’s research continues to ask questions about how people who are depressed describe themselves—and how to increase positive self-description. For instance, in past work, Professor Dainer-Best found that adults with low mood will learn to describe themselves more positively after imagining future positive social situations. He is continuing this work at Bard. The Affective Science Lab uses clinical research methods to identify the factors behind mood disorders. Work in the lab uses samples of adults, online and in person, across the range of depressive symptoms.

Sarah Dunphy-Lelii, Program Chair and Associate Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 102 | sdl@bard.edu

Professor Dunphy-Lelii’s undergraduate education focused on child cognitive development, after which she became project coordinator for the Cognitive Evolution Group at the University of Louisiana, Lafayette, studying cognition in chimpanzees. Professor Dunphy-Lelii pursued graduate work with a different population (human preschoolers) but very similar theoretical topics – for example, the ways that young individuals think about the minds of others, and how they reason about unseeable behaviors such as thoughts, beliefs, and desires. While in graduate school, she became intrigued by how the specific case of autism might shed some light on these same topics. In particular, an interest in how different children learn to distinguish self from other (in terms of perspective-taking, memory, and imitation) emerged. At Bard, Professor Dunphy-Lelii has returned to her primary interest in the early cognitive development of typically developing preschoolers. Here, she uses her research experience with typical children, children with autism, and primates to influence her ongoing work.

Principal Investigator of the Child Development Project.

Tom Hutcheon, Visiting Assistant Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 118 | thutcheo@bard.edu

Professor Hutcheon’s research focuses on cognitive control, which is defined as the ability to select relevant sources of information in the face of distracting or competing sources of information. As everyone has experienced, the efficiency of cognitive control varies. At times we find it easy to sit down at our computers and work on a paper. At other times we end up checking our email every three minutes. What causes this variability in performance? Professor Hutcheon’s research seeks to understand the mechanisms that support cognitive control, the factors that influence the efficiency of cognitive control, and how these are influenced by healthy aging. To address these issues, Professor Hutcheon uses a variety of behavioral and statistical techniques including computational modeling and response time distribution analyses.

Principal Investigator of the Cognitive CTRL Lab.

Justin Hulbert, Assistant Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 108 | jhulbert@bard.edu

Memories guide our lives, but how do we sift through the vast array of accumulated memories to find the relevant ones and ignore unpleasant or otherwise unwelcome thoughts? Using the tools of cognitive neuroscience to decode the mechanisms responsible for adaptively retrieving, consolidating, and forgetting memories, Professor Hulbert’s Memory Dynamics Lab aims to identify evidence-based strategies designed to help learners capitalize on these mental operations. A recipient of the Walt Disney Company Foundation Scholarship, a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, and a Tom Slick Research Award in Consciousness for his work on reversibly inducing amnesia through cognitive control, Professor Hulbert is interested in designing and testing algorithms that harness brainwaves (EEG/ERPs recorded while learners are either awake or asleep) in order to help individuals remember when/what they want to remember and forget when/what they want to forget.

Principal Investigator of the Memory Dynamics Lab.

Kristin Lane, Associate Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 106 | lane@bard.edu

Professor Lane is interested in how social thought, feeling, and behavior operate in a social context. With robust empirical evidence from the last few decades demonstrating how much of mental life takes place outside our conscious awareness has come the realization that people may hold two sets of attitudes toward a given object. Professor Lane is interested in implicit attitudes and beliefs (those that exist outside the bounds of conscious awareness and cannot be verbally reported evidence). In particular, her research focuses on implicit attitudes toward and beliefs about members of different social groups (race, class, gender, etc.). She investigates the fundamental ways in which such attitudes, identities, and beliefs operate: How do they form, and how are they connected? At the same time, Professor Lane is interested in ways in which such cognitions operate in the real world, and how an understanding of them can be applied to domains outside of the lab. Recent research explores the role of implicit attitudes and stereotypes in the gender gap in science participation.

Principal Investigator of the Social Psychology Lab.

Professor Rich LopezRichard Lopez, Assistant Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 119 | rlopez@bard.edu

Professor Lopez’s research seeks to elucidate a core aspect of our human experience, namely: the ways in which we negotiate our various emotions and cravings in order to achieve our goals and promote health and wellbeing. By incorporating psychological theories about emotion, motivation, and goal pursuit with methodological tools from experimental psychology and cognitive neuroscience, Professor Lopez examines individual difference factors underlying self-regulatory abilities in both the appetitive and affective domains. He and members of the Regulation of Everyday Affect, Craving, and Health (REACH) Lab are particularly interested in developing naturalistic models of self-regulation by characterizing and predicting people’s moment-by-moment experiences of cravings and emotions in daily life—with an eye toward developing flexible, personalized interventions to improve various aspects of health and wellbeing.

Frank Scalzo, Associate Professor in Psychology | CV

Preston 101 | scalzo@bard.edu

The Bard Behavioral Neuroscience Laboratory provides research opportunities in several areas of neuroscience. These include invertebrate behavior, immunohistochemistry, behavioral pharmacology, neurobehavioral teratology, neuroanatomy and molecular biology. Laboratory research integrates the research interests of students and faculty and is focused on understanding the behavioral and neurobiological effects of exposure to chemical substances whose primary mechanism of action are through the nervous system. Research is conducted using developing zebrafish (Danio rerio) as an animal model. Zebrafish provide an excellent model system in which to investigate a variety of behavioral and pharmacological effects because of their rapid growth and transparency during the larval stage that allows for the visualization of neuronal and other structures. Current research is focused on understanding the functional role of n-methyl-daspartate (NMDA) receptor systems in zebrafish and how these systems can be perturbed by chemical insults. Behavioral, neuroanatomical, psychopharmacological and molecular techniques are used in these investigations.

Stuart Levine, Professor in Psychology; Dean Emeritus of Bard College

Stevenson 405 | levine@bard.edu

Professor Levine’s research interests include social psychology, specifically obedience to authority, conformity, attitude measurement, and change; small-group dynamics; moral development; statistics; and experimental design.

Richard Gordon, Professor Emeritus and Research Professor in Psychology CV


Professor Gordon taught at Bard College for nearly forty years until his retirement in 2008. He remains interested the field of psychopathology and the treatment of human problems, and continues his work as a clinical psychologist in private practice. He has a special interest in the field of eating disorders, and has published major books in the field, including Eating Disorders: Anatomy of a Social Epidemic (Second Edition), Wiley-Blackwell, 2000. He has also written on the spectrum of psychiatric treatments, including medication and psychotherapy. Recent publications in these areas have included “Drugs Don’t Talk: Do Antidepressant Medications Contribute to Silencing the Self?” in the award-winning book by Dana Jack and Alisha Ali, Silencing the Self Across Cultures: Gender and Depression in the Social World (Oxford University Press, 2010).