Psychology Research Flourishes at Whittier College

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Faculty and students from the psychology department have kept busy this spring presenting research at three different professional conferences and hosting the 12th Annual Psi Chi Whittier Undergraduate Research Conference (WURC) 

WURC is designed to foster and support high quality research among undergraduates in the greater Los Angeles area. About 100 participants from Whittier, UCLA, California State University Los Angels, and Cal Lutheran University participated in this year's conference. 

UC Irvine developmental psychology professor Jodi Quas gave the keynote speech, "How Science Can Inform Practice: Understanding and Facilitating Abuse Disclosures in Maltreated Children." 

"WURC has become particularly popular and well known," said conference organizer professor Lori Camparo. "It has been a great way to bring very positive attention to Whittier."

In late April, Whittier College had a strong presence at the 2013 Western Psychological Association (WPA) Conference held in Reno, NV. 

Senior Austin Hunter presented research he conducted with professor Chuck Hill on attitudes toward the elderly. Fellow Poet Katherine Normand '12 presented research from her senior project, which was conducted with professor Lori Camparo, on court schools for children. Hunter and Normand were each recognized with one of only seven awards from Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology, among 52 presentations. 

In addition, Professor Ayesha Shaikh chaired a symposium sponsored by the Council of Undergraduate Psychology Programs on high impact teaching practices. She also presented a paper on the topic with professor Christina Scott and Joshua Perese and Parker Longwell. 

Camparo also presented a paper as part of the symposium with Normand and Hollie Almeria '13 on the high impact practice of service learning.

Also this spring, Camparo presented research with a colleague from UCLA on child forensic interviewing at the Biennial Conference for the Society for Research on Child Development in Seattle, Washington.

Meanwhile Scott presented research on the topic of "Friends with Benefits" with three undergraduate students, Irma Rivera, Ashley Terich, and Kimberly Welch, at the Adolescent Sexuality Conference in Seaside, Oregon.