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Graduate Assistants

Many graduate students in the Educational Psychology program have the opportunity to teach a variety of classes at the undergraduate level, including courses that focus on the psychology of learning, child/adolescent development, motivation and creativity within formal/informal learning contexts. Although most assistantships involve classroom instruction as a Graduate Teaching Assistant/Associate (GTA), some students also have the opportunity to serve as a Graduate Research Assistant/Associate (GRA).

Jati Ariati

"I'm interested in students’ sense of belonging during the learning process, especially those influenced by cultural background, such as international students’ community. More specifically, I'm interested in how all parties (e.g., teacher, student) co-create an inclusive learning environment to improve motivation and performances by involving educational technology. I am hoping to have Indonesian cuisine food truck to introduce my culture."

- Jati Ariati, Doctoral Student
Tameko Collins

“I am interested in how teacher self-efficacy and beliefs impact student motivation and attributions, as well as teacher burnout and demoralization. I am also interested in researching contributing factors to our current teacher shortage crisis. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with friends and family (including my 3 cats), experimenting with a new salad or pasta recipe or exercising with indoor cycling.”

- Tameko Collins, Doctoral Student
Kevin Gray

“My research interests are motivation, heuristics, emotion, and their influence on learning. I enjoy spending time with my family, being outdoors, and exploration/survival video games.”

- Kevin Gray, Doctoral Student
John Harden

"My research interests include data-driven research and analysis, purpose and well-being, educational innovation and technology, and motivation changes over the lifespan. In my spare time, I enjoy showing off my dog (and her tricks), amateur science projects, staying current on world events, and weekly game nights with my brothers. Whenever possible, I love to engage with lifelong learners; if you see me out, don’t hesitate to strike up a conversation!"

- John Harden, Doctoral Student
Paul Hunhoff

“I am interested in learning environments, motivation, mindsets, peer relationships, and learner safety perceptions. My free time is spent exploring new places and seeing new things with my family. I appreciate adventure, the outdoors, and being active.”

- Paul Hunhoff, Doctoral Student
Jamie Lewandowski

“My research interests are related to how best to support caregivers and professionals as they navigate the educational system on behalf of the children in their lives. I aim to improve the methods by which neurodiverse children, specifically, are identified and how their families can access quality services that foster improved student outcomes. Through empowering caregivers to advocate for their children in the school setting, I strive to promote students’ psychological well-being throughout their development. For self-care, I enjoy hot yoga, matcha tea, vegan cooking, and spending time with my human and canine family members.”

- Jaime Lewandowski, Doctoral Student
Cody Long

"I'm currently interested in improving educational resources and pedagogies for low-income and underserved students. Research often shows that these students are at a disadvantage in the educational realm, and I wish to decrease this gap in academic success. Prior work of mine has included applying social class theory to survey measures of socioeconomic status, as well as analyzing the perceptions students with low-income status have about online learning environments."

- Kody Long, Doctoral Student
GRA/Assistant Director for Motivation in Classrooms Lab
Krystal Moore

“My research interests include high-risk students, impacts of socioeconomic status on education, and LGBTQ+ studies. I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, and outdoor activities when it cools down in the fall.”

- Krystal Moore, Doctoral Student
Thomas Pham

“My research interest includes research and evaluation in educational and nonprofit organizations, motivation theories, communication technologies and complex trauma concerning youth and emerging adults' socioemotional development and general wellbeing. I enjoy serving at local nonprofits, cooking/baking, catching up with family and friends, or playing with my pets in my free time.”

- Thomas Pham, Doctoral Student
Christina Smith

“My primary research interest focuses on the various types of bullying (e.g., face-to-face, cyber, relational), and how the frequencies of being a perpetrator or victim can impact development later in life. I also enjoy conducting institutional research to help gather data for the improvement of campus practices and policies. In my spare time, I indulge in cuddling with my fur child Chloe, spending time with friends/family, trying out new recipes, and binging Netflix!”

- Christina Smith, Doctoral Student - GTA Lead Facilitator
Ngan Tran

“My research interests include college students’ self-beliefs (e.g., mindsets, self-efficacy) and contextual factors (e.g., teacher-student relationships) that promote their learning engagement and sense of belonging at college. I love cooking, collecting stationery, learning new things, and traveling to the beach with my family.”

- Ngan Tran, Doctoral Student
Samantha Willis

“My professional interests include educational technology and how technology can enhance the learning experiences of students and teachers at all levels. In my spare time, I love exploring new technologies, reading, and spending time with my family.”

- Samantha Willis, Master's Student
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