News

Boo! Why we love the trick, and not just the treat, of Halloween

(October 28, 2014) UBC Psychology prof Sheila Woody talks about our fascination with being spooked. Why do we enjoy scaring others, and ourselves? There are different elements that come with being afraid. There’s a cognitive part that has us on edge, or uncertain about what’s going to happen next. There’s the physical part where we […]

UBC Psychology professor Kiley Hamlin shares research on early moral cognition with the Dalai Lama

(October 22, 2014) Prof. Kiley Hamlin took part in the sold-out event Educating the Heart in the Early Years: A Dialogue with the Dalai Lama on October 22, 2014 at UBC’s Chan Centre for Performing Arts. Revered worldwide for his compassion, quick wit and intelligence, the Dalai Lama is one of UBC’s most distinguished Honorary […]

Dr. Jiaying Zhao named Tier II Canada Research Chair

(October 16, 2014) UBC Psychology professor Jiaying Zhao is named a Canada Research Chair in Behavioral Sustainability. Please join us in congratulating her on this accomplishment! Dr. Zhao is using this funding towards building the Behavioral Sustainability Lab in the Department of Psychology at UBC. Chairholders are leading researchers in their areas and improve Canada’s […]

New research: children as young as five can be critical of adults who make overly-confident claims

(October 8, 2014)  Research from the Psychology departments at Concordia and UBC reveals that children as young as five can gauge when adults are overconfident. From the words for colours to how to tie a shoelace, kids have lots to learn — and for the most part, they depend on others to teach it to […]

Chalk it up to experience: Steven Barnes’ stop-motion animations bring blackboard to life

(October 2, 2014) A blackboard and chalk may not sound like cutting edge technology, but there’s nothing old-fashioned about the way UBC psychology instructor Steven Barnes employs the classic tools of the teaching trade. With the help of research assistant Chandra Jade, the tenure-track instructor is developing a series of 10 stop-motion animations for his […]

Prof. Ara Norenzayan awarded James McKeen Cattell Fund Fellowship

(October 1, 2014) Please join us in congratulating UBC Psychology Professor Ara Norenzayan, recipient of a 2014–2015 James McKeen Cattell Fund Fellowship. The Fellowships allow recipients to extend their sabbatical periods from one semester to a full year. During his sabbatical, Norenzayan will investigate how the field of psychology can tackle religious diversity, including secular […]

New research: Chemical signals in the brain help guide risky decisions

(September 11, 2014) A gambler’s decision to stay or fold in a game of cards could be influenced by a chemical in the brain, suggests new research from Stan Floresco, professor in UBC’s Dept. of Psychology. The rise and fall of dopamine plays a key role in decisions involving risk and reward, from a baseball […]

2014/2015 Department Colloquia: confirmed speakers

Join us for a series of intriguing talks and scientific inspiration. Annually the Department of Psychology hosts a Colloquia Series throughout the academic year. This exciting program brings us together outside of the classroom to have conversations with our faculty and students and the speakers we’ve invited to our campus to share their ideas. You’ll […]

UBC Psychology Professor Elizabeth Dunn a SSHRC Impact Connection Award finalist

(September 8, 2014) The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) announced the top three finalists for 2014 Impact Awards in the Talent, Insight, Connection and Partnership award categories. Congratulations, high fives and happy faces to Elizabeth Dunn, who is a finalist for the Connection Award! The Connection Award recognizes an outstanding SSHRC-funded initiative to […]

UBC Psychology’s Sunaina Assanand’s five dos and don’ts for new students

(September 3, 2014) As a senior instructor in UBC’s Dept. of Psychology, Sunaina Assanand has logged countless hours in classrooms. Lecturing to an average class size of 200 to 250 students, she’s also seen her fair share of classroom antics. To better help first-year university students achieve success, Assanand, now an associate dean in the […]

UBC Psychology Imagine Day Orientation Presentation

(September 2, 2014) Join us for a series of UBC Psychology information sessions and get connected to the psychology community. During these sessions, you will learn more about curricular and extracurricular opportunities available to psychology students, the Psychology Department’s BSc Program, the Psychology Department’s Honours Program, and upcoming events for psychology students. We will begin […]

Catherine Rawn awarded 2014 Knox Master Teacher Award

(August 20, 2014) Please join us in congratulating Catherine Rawn, recipient of the 2014 Robert E. Knox Master Teacher Award from the Department of Psychology. Catherine, a Senior Instructor in our Learning Enhancement area, received this award for her commitment to teaching excellence. This award recognizes our dedicated professors with significant career achievements in teaching. […]

UBC Psychology MA student Jennifer Lay is a Vanier Scholar

(August 18, 2014) Congratulations to UBC Psychology MA student Jennifer Lay, recipient of a 2014 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship! Jennifer is one of  thirty-two UBC doctoral students awarded $50,000 a year for three years. This award allows Jennifer to continue her research in ‘Overcoming barriers to social engagement: Exploring associations between self-esteem, social self-efficacy, everyday […]

New research on eye-tracking devices sheds light on the implications of wearable technologies

(August 6, 2014) Wearers of smart glasses such as Google Glass can easily forget they’re recording what they see and despite the best of intentions, can violate other people’s privacy. That’s the suggestion of new research out of the Brain and Attention Lab in the University of British Columbia’s Dept. of Psychology. For a study just […]

Professor Emeritus Stanley Coren featured in the UBC Annual Report

The Audience Sits Up, Rolls Over Popular author, lecturer, blogger, broadcast celebrity, academic researcher and canine expert; Professor Emeritus Stanley Coren received the Maxwell Medal of Excellence from the Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA). The author of some 400 research papers and articles on a wide range of psychological areas and 19 books for […]

Q and A with Luke Clark, leading gambling psychologist

(July 18, 2014) Dr. Luke Clark, a global expert in the field of gambling research, joins the Department of Psychology as the inaugural director of the Centre for Gambling Research at UBC. Clark, who led the UK’s largest study of pathological gamblers, will lead the academic and operational activities of the Centre beginning July 1, […]

UBC Psychology research a feature story in UBC’s 2013/14 Annual Report

On the UBC Vancouver campus, the walls do ‘speak’ and apparently, some far more persuasively than others. To assist the UBC Campus Sustainability Sort it Out program and to underline the campus as a ‘living lab’, the UBC Department of Psychology monitored the recycling outcomes at two popular eating areas in two very differently designed […]

Jason Snyder receives 2014 MSFHR Scholar Award

(July 9, 2014) Join us in congratulating Assistant Prof. Jason Snyder on his recent Scholar award from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research. The award goes towards his project: functions for new neurons in remembering stressful experiences and repairing the adult brain. He is among thirty-two exceptional BC health researchers named recipients of Scholar […]

Canada’s Most Versatile Psychologist: Dr. Peter Suedfeld

(July 7, 2014) At the 75th Annual CPA Convention in Vancouver, Dr. John Connors gave a fascinating talk on UBC Psychology Professor Emeritus Peter Suedfeld’s background, history and groundbreaking research in the field of REST (Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy).

UBC Psychology welcomes new Department Head

Dr. Geoffrey Hall begins his five-year term as Department Head on July 1. Hall is the Director of the Language Development Centre and a part of the Early Development Research Group, a group of five research centers interested in the development of language, learning, and social understanding in children. He succeeds Dr. Alan Kingstone, who […]

UBC Psychology faculty receive new NSERC grants

June 26, 2014 Six UBC Psychology professors involved in research ranging from understanding our lifespan memory development; to components of human selective attention are receiving new funding through the Discovery Grants program of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). Peter Graf (Discovery grant) Prospective memory across the adult lifespan Todd Handy […]

Job interviews reward narcissists, punish applicants from modest cultures

Media Release | June 12, 2014 A study by UBC Psychology Prof. Del Paulhus finds that narcissistic applicants are more successful in job interviews than equally qualified candidates who act more modestly. The findings suggest that applicants from cultures that place greater emphasis on humility, including some Asian cultures, may have a harder time landing […]

Dr. Peter Suedfeld a Featured Fellow in Canadian Geographic

UBC Psychology Professor Emeritus Peter Suedfeld is a Featured Fellow in the June 2014 Canadian Geographic! Dr. Suedfeld has journeyed to places such as Antarctica to study the effects of isolation on people. Read the full profile here.  

UBC Psychology student awards announced

Each year, UBC Psychology students are recognized for their department contributions and overall academic achievements. Please join us in congratulating our exceptional undergraduate and graduate students who received the following awards: Undergraduate award recipients Jean Bolocan Prize (outstanding BA student in final year of study) Sandy Yee Eric Eich Award (outstanding BA student in final […]

Dads who do chores bolster daughters’ aspirations

Fathers who help with household chores are more likely to raise daughters who aspire to less traditional, and potentially higher paying, careers. So finds a new study that suggests how parents share dishes, laundry and other domestic duties plays a key role in shaping the gender attitudes and aspirations of their children, especially daughters. While […]

PhD student Benjamin Cheung awarded UBC Killam Graduate Teaching Assistant Award

Hearty congratulations goes out to UBC Psychology PhD student Benjamin Cheung, recipient of a 2014 UBC Killam Graduate Teaching Assistant Award! UBC annually awards teaching prizes to UBC teaching assistants in recognition of the valuable role that they play in undergraduate programs.   (May 2014) Photos courtesy of UBC Ceremonies and Events

A former UBC Psychology Professor’s Honorary Degree acceptance speech

Ten years ago Nobel Laureate and former UBC Psychology professor Daniel Kahneman received an honorary UBC degree alongside his wife Anne Treisman, also a former UBC Psychology professor and a 2011 National Medical of Science Laureate. Kahneman earned the Nobel Prize in 2002 for integrating psychological research into economics, particularly concerning human judgement and decision-making […]

Sisters’ achievements a combination nature and nurture

Twin sisters Negah and Pegah Mortazavi are in synch in all aspects of their lives. They joined UBC with matching entrance scholarships to pursue their honours degrees in psychology. Their enthusiasm and energy mirrors one another and they share a close bond. The scientist in them attributes this to culture, genes and environment. “Very early […]

Dr. Sunaina Assanand Awarded UBC Killam Teaching Prize

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Sunaina Assanand, who received the 2013/2014 UBC Killam Teaching Prize. UBC Killam Teaching Prizes are awarded annually in the Faculty of Arts and they recognize distinguished teaching at all levels of instruction.  Dr. Assanand was selected for this award in recognition of her reputation of being an outstanding teacher who […]

UBC Psychology Professor Liisa Galea on ‘baby brain’ and other ways that motherhood changes a woman’s brain chemistry

Motherhood permanently alters the brain, exposing moms to different health risks than women without children, says UBC neuroscientist Liisa Galea. Galea says understanding the long-term effects of motherhood will improve medical care and treatment for mothers. Read the Q and A with Liisa Galea at UBC News.

Benjamin Cheung receives Killam Graduate Teaching Assistant Award

Congratulations goes out to UBC Psychology MA student Benjamin Cheung, recipient of the 2013/14 Killam Graduate Teaching Assistant Award! UBC annually awards teaching prizes to UBC teaching assistants in recognition of the valuable role that they play in undergraduate programs. With over 2000 Teaching Assistants working at UBC, winning this award is a remarkable achievement. The […]

Dr. Janet Werker Elected as 2014 American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced its 2014 class of new members, which includes winners of the Nobel Prize; the Wolf Prize; the Pulitzer Prize; National Medal of the Arts; MacArthur, Guggenheim, and Fulbright Fellowships; and Grammy, Emmy, Oscar, and Tony Awards. Dr. Werker’s membership is an exciting first for the Department of […]

The new pulse of digital music

UBC Psychology major Diana Brownie is transforming music and dance in UBC’s Laptop Orchestra. The third-year Psychology student says the ensemble’s motion technology helps non-musical collaborators feel more part of the show. “As a dancer, the music typically dictates your movements,” Brownie says. “But with this, your dancing create the sounds – so it’s been […]

Canada Fund for Innovation awards UBC $2.2M to boost research

Congratulations to UBC Psychology researchers Frances Chen and Kiran Soma who received Canada Fund for Innovation awards to fund their research! Assistant Professor Frances Chen (left) received $124,971 for laboratory infrastructure for her Social Health Lab and Associate Professor Kiran Soma received $254,806 in infrastructure support for the UBC Steroid Profiling Laboratory. More    

UBC Psychology PhD student Michael Muthukrishna is a SSHRC Storytellers finalist

UBC Psychology’s Michael Muthukrishna created this video to explain Psychohistory and was selected as a Top 25 Storyteller. The top entries demonstrated the impact of SSHRC research and addressed key societal issues highlighting how research in the social sciences and humanities helps us understand and improve the world around us.

CPA Clinical Section Educational Activity Student grant awarded

Congratulations to our graduate student in the Clinical Psychology program who successfully received a Canadian Psychological Association Clinical Section Educational Activity Student Grant! The grant is subsidizing registration fees for UBC and SFU clinical psychology graduate students for a workshop on Psychological Treatment of Addiction and Concurrent Disorders on May 9, 2014. Registration is open […]

UBC psychology professor Joseph Henrich renewed as Canada Research Chair in Culture, Cognition and Co-evolution

Research ranging from Latin poetry to neuroethics at the University of British Columbia has received an $8.5 million boost in federal funding for eight professors appointed or renewed as Canada Research Chairs. The UBC contingent is among the 102 new and renewed chairs announced Friday by Ed Holder, Minister of State for Science and Technology, […]

The power of the crowd

In the age of Kickstarter, tech-savvy scientists explore new ways to engage the public in their research. When Docky Duncan started crowdfunding for his quirky research project, he didn’t think he was doing anything out of the ordinary. “If a local rock band can be successful at crowdfunding, we figured a bunch of scientists should […]

Head games: How the mind works when gambling

Tiny ‘rat casino’ offers insight into brain and possible treatments for compulsive gambling UBC Psychology Prof. Catharine Winstanley’s work on gambling addictions will be a highlight of the new Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health, a major new research and clinical facility that recently opened at UBC. In 2009, Winstanley’s Laboratory of Molecular and Behavioural Neuroscience […]

2013 Undergraduate Student of the Year Honourable Mention

UBC Psychogy student Eva Kwan received an honourable mention for the Arts Co-op Student of the Year Award! Eva was recognized for her work at the Canadian Space Agency’s Operational Space Medicine Programme, where she supported Commander Chris Hadfield with his mission to space. “She made a huge difference in the success of my spaceflight […]

Spring forward? Is Daylight Saving Time worth it?

Daylight Savings Time causes an initial hazard, but there is “a life-saving benefit,” says UBC Psychology Professor Stanley Coren.

Gambling research pioneer to lead new centre at UBC

Leading gambling psychologist Luke Clark will join the University of British Columbia’s Dept. of Psychology as inaugural director of the Centre for Gambling Research at UBC to advance research and understanding of problem gambling behaviours. Clark, who led the UK’s largest study of pathological gamblers, will lead the academic and operational activities of the Centre beginning July 1, 2014. […]