Angelica Puzio (WFU MA, 2017) receives the Judith L. Gibbons Award

by on March 15, 2018

  Angelica Puzio (WFU MA, 2017) was recently awarded the Judith L. Gibbons Award for Research on Culture and GenderThe award was presented  at the 47th Annual Meeting of the Society for  Cross-Cultural Research, February 21-21, 2018, in a symposium titled: Gender Socialization in Context: Cross-Cultural Perspectives on the Empowerment of Women and Girls.

The award  was based on research conducted for her WFU Master’s thesis, The Socialization of the Adolescent Voice: Self-Silencing as an Expression of Culture and Context –thesis advisor:  Deborah L. Best.   Ms. Puzio is presently a PhD student at NYU.

Judith L. Gibbons Award for Research on Culture and Gender

This award is in honor of long time SCCR member Dr. Judith L. Gibbons, Professor Emerita of Psychology at Saint Louis University. The award is given yearly to a graduate student or early career professional (within 7 years of receiving their PhD) who presents research on culture and gender at the annual SCCR meeting.

Professors Jayawickreme and Masicampo recognized for excellence in teaching and research!!!

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We were thrilled to learn that two or our colleagues were honored at Convocation for their excellence in research and teaching. Professor Masicampo received the Reid-Doyle Prize for Excellence in Teaching  and Dr. Jayawickreme received the Excellence in Research Award. Congratulations to Drs. Masicampo and Jayawickeme!

Former honor student presents Faculty Distinguished Lecture – Professor Cynthia Edwards

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Professor Cynthia Edwards, a former Honor student in psychology, presented the Faculty Distinguished Lecture at Meredith College earlier this year.  Her presentation was titled: “Mix Your Own Palette: The Power of Friendships to Color Your Future” in which she will present results from her longitudinal research program on the role of family and peer social support in mediating the stressors associated with adolescent and early adult life transitions.

Following graduation from Wake, Professor Edwards received her PhD in Developmental Psychology at UNC. She joined the faculty at Meredith College in 1991,where she is the head of the department of Psychology and Social Work She is also guiding the development of a new graduate program in I/O psychology.

Professor Terry Blumenthal named APS Fellow

by on February 8, 2018

Professor Terry Blumenthal was recently recognized as a  Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science.


“Fellow status is awarded to APS Members who have made sustained outstanding contributions to the science of psychology in the areas of research, teaching, service and/or application.” (APS website)

Dr. Terry Blumenthal has worked with the startle reflex for many years, and he advises and consults with labs all over the world in how to use startle in their research. Some of the recent questions and applications for which Dr. Blumenthal has advised other labs, all involving the startle response, include:

–          A better diagnostic for tinnitus (“ear ringing”)

–          Predicting the probability of a second suicide attempt in first-attempt survivors

–          Using plants to decrease stress in astronauts living in space habitats

–          Making atrial defibrillators less painful

–          Protecting information processing in telephone and online marketing environments

–          Keeping grey seals away from commercial fish feeders

–          Decreasing the pain of dental procedures

–          Information processing changes in cocaine addicts

–          Effects of divorce during childhood on subsequent anxiety sensitivity in adulthood

–          Police officer reactions during and after a gun-related incident

–          Mindfulness as an inoculation against anxiety


Congratulations for this well-deserved honor!



Wake Forest Fellows

by on January 22, 2018


Wake Forest Fellows


Nine seniors will remain in the Wake Forest campus community after graduation  as Wake Forest Fellows. Six of these nine new Fellows are Psychology majors or minors. They will work across the campus, including in the offices of the President, the Provost and the Dean of the College.

Since 2008, the Wake Forest Fellows program has provided exceptional Wake Forest college graduates with the opportunity to work in higher education administration for a year. Each fellow will serve as a full-time Wake Forest staff member, starting this summer. In addition to working with top administrators, the fellows will participate in leadership activities and interact with faculty, staff and students to learn about the inner workings of higher education.

The Wake Forest Fellows for 2017-18 are:

  • Campus Life: Allison Chambers, Raleigh, psychology/minor, health and human services
  • Dean of the College: Anita Patel, Winston-Salem, health and exercise science/minor, chemistry and psychology
  • Information Systems: Elliot McCoy, Silver Spring, Md., economics/minor, psychology
  • Officer of Personal and Career Development: John Idzick, Atlanta, psychology/minor, health and human services
  • Pro Humanitate Institute: Cazandra Rebollar, Elon, psychology/minor, Latin American and Latino studies
  • President’s Office: Sydney Feinglass, Charlotte, economics/minors, French studies and philosophy
  • Provost’s Office: Mia Harris, Chicago, biology/minors, neuroscience and psychology
  • Reynolda House: Ashley Laughlin, Reno, Nevada, English and French/minor, creative writing
  • Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center: Frank Dy, Fayetteville, economics

Alumni of the Wake Forest Fellows program have pursued careers in many fields, including law, medicine, public policy and more.  Fellows have since received prestigious academic honors such as Rhodes and Fulbright scholarships.

Passing of Emeritus Professors Catron and Dufort

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Professor David Catron

Two of the WFU Department of Psychology founding professors passed away in the past several months.

Professor Emeritus David W. Catron came to Wake Forest University in 1963 in the Center for Psychological Services. He was a founding member of the department of psychology where he taught for 33 years. Dr. Catron was awarded a Senior Fulbright Lecturer position in Malaysia where he lived with his family for a year. He was a published scholar, a dedicated teacher, and a cherished colleague.


Professor Robert Dufort

Professor Emeritus Robert Dufort came to Wake Forest University in 1961 and retired in 1999.  He was the first Director of Graduate Studies in our department and served in this position from 1964 to 1983. He was instrumental in growing our recognized M.A program. Dr. Dufort was a respected researcher in the area of learning and published a body of research on topics such as verbal learning, instrumental and classical conditioning and hunger.

Center for Open Science Workshop held at WFU, Department of Psychology

by on November 14, 2017

On Wednesday, October 4th, the department hosted the Openness and Reproducibility in Research Workshop.  Special  thanks to Dr. John F. Rauthmann for bringing this workshop to our department!

Dr. Jennifer Freeman Smith from the Center for Open Science described the benefits of open and reproducible research practices, discussed  emerging incentives for these practices and led participants through steps in  how to create collaborative projects on the OSF.

She highlighted the importance of transparency throughout the research project that should lead to reproducible results at three levels:

  1. Computation Reproducibility: If researchers took your data and code/analysis scripts and reran it, they can reproduce the numbers/graphs in your paper
  2. Methods Reproducibility: Researchers have enough information to rerun the experiment or survey the way it was originally conducted
  3. Results Reproducibility/Replicability: Researchers use your exact methods and analyses, but collect new data, and they get the same statistical conclusion

The practices she shared are aimed at reducing false leads in research and increasing efficiency. By making data accessible, having open materials and pre-registering studies before they are conducted, the COS believes that the traditional way of publishing research gains additions that may benefit our field as a whole. Feel free to check out the Center for Open Science and email any questions to them at

Professor Kiang Receives Multiple Honors from AAJP

by on November 13, 2017




Professor Lisa Kiang

Congratulations to Dr. Lisa Kiang who was recently appointed as Associate Editor of the Asian American Journal of Psychology!!


Professor Kiang received her PhD from the University of Denver and joined our department in 2006.Her area of research is in cultural identity and social relationships, with an emphasis on positive well-being among adolescents from ethnically diverse and immigrant backgrounds.


I’m very excited to share with you that Dr. Lisa Kiang has agreed to become the new Associate Editor of AAJP beginning on January 1, 2018. Dr. Kiang is currently a Professor of Psychology at Wake Forest University. She earned her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from University of Denver and currently has over 60 refereed journal articles and book chapters. Dr. Kiang has served on the AAJP editorial board since 2014 and was a lead guest editor for the AAJP Special Issue on the model minority myth that was published in March of 2017. Dr. Kiang also is a recipient of the 2016 AAJP Best Paper Award. I’m very fortunate to have Dr. Kiang join the AAJP leadership group and very much looking forward to working with her….


Taylor Thompson

Congratulations to Professor Kiang and her former MA student Taylor Thompson:  AAJP 2016 Best Paper Award Winners

“You’re Asian; You’re supposed to be smart”: Adolescents’ experiences with the Model Minority Stereotype and longitudinal links with identity.

by Taylor Thompson, Lisa Kiang, and Melissa R. Witkow

(from: Asian American Journal of Psychology, Vol. 7 No. 2, pp. 108-119. )

Our new Assistant Teaching Professor: Dr. Melissa Masicampo

by on September 10, 2017

We are happy to welcome Dr. Melissa Masicampo in her new role as a full time Assistant Teaching Professor in the Psychology Department!

  Did you know that …….Dr. Masicampo studied psychology at the University of Massachusetts at Boston, where she was first introduced to the field of biopsychology. After graduating with a B.A., she moved to Tallahassee, Florida to earn her PhD in neuroscience from Florida State University. In graduate school, Dr. Masicampo examined the role of sensory input to the developing auditory system in early post-hatch chicks. It was also during graduate school that Dr. Masicampo got her first taste of teaching, both in the classroom and in running community outreach events.

Following graduate school, Dr. Masicampo moved to Winston-Salem to do her postdoctoral research at Wake Forest Baptist Health. There she tested a novel therapeutic to combat alcohol withdrawal seizures. Also during this time, Dr. Masicampo became an adjunct faculty member in the Psychology Department at Wake Forest University. After serving as Visiting Faculty at WFU for two years, Dr. Masicampo is now a full time teaching professor in the Psychology Department. Dr. Masicampo enjoys spending time with family, vegetarian cooking, hiking with her dog, and horseback riding.

The Beacon Project Calls for Participant Applications for Seminar, 2018

by on August 15, 2017

The Beacon Project will host a seminar on Character and the Morally Exceptional in June, 2018.

Below, find dates and details provided by The Beacon Project team.

Read more about this project in a recent Wake Forest News article:

Beacon Project Summer Seminar: “Character and the Morally Exceptional: Empirical Discoveries and Moral Improvement

Wake Forest University

Seminar Leader:
Dr. Christian B. Miller, A.C. Reid Professor of Philosophy
Philosophy Director, The Beacon Project
Past Director, The Character Project

Becoming a virtuous person is one of the central goals of the ethical life. But how good of a job are most people doing in becoming virtuous? And are there any plausible strategies for cultivating the virtues and becoming morally exceptional which can help us to do better? This seminar will examine these two questions in detail. In the first half, we will see whether character traits even exist in light of various results in psychology. The second half will turn to various strategies for trying to bridge the character gap between the character we actually have, and the virtuous character we should strive to obtain. Developing and justifying such strategies is one of the most underexplored areas of ethics, although in recent years it has gained increased attention. Here we will look at new work by Nancy Snow, Jonathan Webber, Julia Annas, and Alan Wilson, among others, some of which has not appeared in print yet.

Participants will have their travel, meal, reading materials, and lodging costs covered. They will be housed at the Graylyn Conference Center (, one of the nicest facilities in the country. Seminar meetings are expected to last roughly three hours per day, and will conclude on Thursday, June 28 so that all participants can attend the Beacon Project Final Conference on June 28-30.

The application deadline is December 15, 2017. For more details please visit: