Dr. Shane Littrell, Postdoctoral Fellow
Dr. Shane Littrell received his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Waterloo (Ontario, Canada). Prior to this, he earned an MS in Experimental Research Psychology as well as two bachelor’s degrees from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. His primary research investigates processes crucial for rational thinking and decision-making, with a particular focus on identifying factors underlying the spread of misinformation (e.g., BS, fake news, pseudoscience). Dr. Littrell’s work has received international coverage in several news and science outlets including Forbes, The Guardian, CBC, VICE, CTV News, Global News, Inc.com, and Psychology Today. Currently, Dr. Littrell is helping lead a research project for EPIC investigating predictors of employee investment and success in the workplace, as well as the effects of misinformation in organizational settings.
Naina Abowd, RA
Naina Abowd received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Cornell University, and her Master of Arts in Science Education from New York University. She taught high school biology for 5 years in public schools in New York City, and is currently the Senior Manager of Curriculum and Teaching at the American Museum of Natural History. She is pursuing her Ph.D. in Cognitive Science and Education, and is interested in teacher self-efficacy and teacher behaviors in response to student struggle and failure.
Ben E. Atzmon, RA
Ben E. Atzmon received his bachelor of arts in psychology with combined studies from Richmond, the American International University in London, and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in cognitive science in education at Teachers College, Columbia University. He is interested in how STEM college students’ behaviors and motivations are impacted by failure experiences in the classroom.
Yiran (Mirabelle) Du, RA
Yiran (Mirabelle) Du received her Bachelor of Arts in English and International Studies, and a minor in International Economics and Trade from China Foreign Affairs University in Beijing, China. During her undergraduate, she was able to exchange semester at Barnard College. Yiran received her Master of Arts in Comparative and International Education at Teachers College, Columbia University before she pursued her Ph.D. in Cognitive Science in Education from the same institution.
Scott C. Lu, RA
Scott C. Lu previously taught high school math in California and in Beijing. He received a bachelor of arts in psychology at the University of Michigan, a master of education at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in cognitive science at Teachers College, Columbia University. He is interested in how culture, identity, and upbringing influence child development.
Sean Dolcy, RA
Sean works in STEM education as an Assistant Principal in the NYC dept. of Ed and is a Board member of a National STEM Consortium, NCSSS. Currently, he is pursuing graduate studies in Cognitive Science in Education and working in the EPIC lab. His prior academic studies included School Leadership, Math Education, and Mechanical Engineering.
Vivian Chen, RA
Vivian Chen received her Bachelor of Science in Applied Psychology from New York University with minors in Producing and Creative Writing. She is currently a Research Project Associate at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and is pursuing her Master's degree in Cognitive Science in Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.
Khudaijia Ahmad, RA
Khudaija received a bachelor’s degree in Applied Psychology from the University of Peshawar. She is now enrolled as a Fulbright scholar in the master’s program of Cognitive Science in Education. She has experience in working with children and schools from poverty-stricken areas. Her research interests are failure, persistence, and math performance.
Keying Wang, RA
Keying received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Occidental College. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Cognitive Science in Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. Her interests include metacognition, multimedia learning, and educational media.
Jude Rayan, RA
Jude received his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Arizona State University with a minor in Human Systems Engineering. He is currently pursuing his master’s degree in Neuroscience and Education. He is interested in exploring the neural correlates of the influence of socioeconomic disparities and teacher-student relationships. He plans to help design interventions and policies that address the aforementioned factors.
Kay Kim received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at Barnard College. She also minored in Childhood Education and is licensed to teach grades 1-6 in New York State. Through her courses at Barnard and by working closely with young students, she developed an interest in the fields of educational psychology, developmental psychology, metacognition, and special education.
Matthew Cohen received his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Criminology from Fairleigh Dickinson University and is planning to attend graduate school in the fall of 2022. He has experience working at a therapeutic high school and currently serves as a reading interventionist through AmeriCorps. His interests include non-punitive interventions for high-risk adolescents, the factors that contribute to alternative school efficacy, and ways to foster emotional development in students.
Jonathan Young is applying for his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He has completed the EPIC High School Internship Program in 2020. His research interests include research in nanoscale engineering, STEM education/teaching, cognitive science, and using engineering to better the environment.
Emma is applying for a degree in Psychology. She has completed the EPIC High School Internship in 2021. Through her experiences as a student-athlete, her goal is to delve deeper into the psychological impact that setbacks have on high-performance athletes. Additionally, she is interested in cognitive neuroscience, sports psychology, and addressing the disparities of mental health concerns among people from racial and ethnic minority groups.
Students’ beliefs that success in science depends on exceptional talent negatively impact their motivation to learn. For example, such beliefs have been shown to be a major factor steering students away from taking science and math courses in high school and college. In the present study, we tested a novel story-based instruction that models how scientists achieve through failures and struggles.