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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Psychology

Research and innovation highlights

WSU Spirit Mark.As COVID-19 swept the nation in March 2020, faculty with ongoing studies were required to put them on hold or pivot to make the research relevant to the pandemic.

“Science and teamwork are our best hope for a way forward,” said WSU President Kirk Schulz in October 2020. “I am incredibly proud of our faculty whose persistence and innovation will help us get through this crisis and prevent a future one.” » More …

Data analysis correlates local politics and LGBTQ+ student stress

Rainbow pride flag.Students who identify as LGBTQ+ in Washington state school districts with conservative voting records reported experiencing more bullying than their peers in more politically liberal areas, according to a new study from the Department of Psychology.

“To my knowledge, nobody has really looked at this connection between a school district’s political attitudes and the experiences of » More …

Improving WARNS, a K-12 at-risk assessment tool

Stacked books.An interdisciplinary team of Washington State University researchers received a $1.4 million grant from the Institute of Education Sciences to refine and expand the Washington Assessment of the Risks and Needs of Students program (WARNS), an assessment that helps address truancy in K-12 schools.

Developed in 2008, the program uses evidence-driven procedures to track and improve interventions with students. More than 100 schools in Washington state and across the nation » More …

Cannabis research center established

Cannabis plants.Early efforts in cannabis research at WSU have now grown into a full, multi-disciplinary research center with nearly 100 scientists working on a diverse range of cannabis-related projects. More than a dozen CAS faculty across chemistry, sociology, psychology, criminal justice, and political science are affiliated with the newly christened Center for Cannabis Policy, Research and Outreach, or CCPRO. » More …

Making a difference

Lead Ceremony 2021. President's Awards.The 2021 WSU President’s Awards for Leadership and Engagement Award of Distinction (LEAD) recognized 17 CAS students and a faculty member for outstanding contributions across our diverse campus communities.

“This is a prestigious award that recognizes…the ways they give back to the community and empower others,” said Phillip Sinapati, ASWSU advisor and » More …

Outstanding seniors excel in academics, leadership, service

Sean Swalling, Samantha King-Shaw, andMegan Wong.Writers, researchers, scientists, musicians, athletes, activists, adventurers… the 23 students who received this year’s Outstanding Senior honors from the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) excelled in academic performance and in service to their department or school and to the broader Washington State University community.

Among those honored for 2021 are Regents scholars, National Merit scholars, transfer students, and » More …

Workplace protocols impact overall behavior

A person working at a laptop.Employer COVID‑19 safety measures influenced worker precautions even when they were not on the clock, according to a new study led by WSU psychology professor Tahira Probst.

Researchers found workplace cultures that adopted COVID‑19 prevention measures, such as daily health checks and encouraging sick workers to stay home, resulted in less “sickness presenteeism” or going places when feeling ill. The effect was found both inside and outside of work – meaning fewer employees with » More …

Enhancing undergraduate education

Ruth Gregory, Nikolaus Overtoom, and Patricia Wilde.CAS faculty members are engaged in new projects to improve undergraduate education, thanks to funding from the Samuel H. and Patricia W. Smith Teaching and Learning Endowment.

“The wide scope of projects selected this year reflects a breadth of interests among faculty,” said Mary Wack, vice provost for academic engagement and student achievement. “Their work will impact students across the university.” » More …

Music review: Random Perfect Plan

Album cover: Random Perfect Plan.Richard Tillinghast (’11 psych) found his way to WSU Vancouver after he learned he was going to become a father. He commuted to campus several days a week for two years from his home near White Salmon. Years before, he had started college on the East Coast, but family tragedy and the itch to travel took him overseas. He wandered the world, making a living through music, kayaking, and » More …

New Regents Professor

In recognition of her innovative and influential work in clinical neuropsychology, Maureen Schmitter-Edgecombe has earned promotion to Regents Professor, the highest faculty rank at WSU.

Her real-world work is having a profound impact on the assessment and care of older adults suffering from cognitive impairment. The interventions she has developed support and extend these individuals’ functional independence and her novel rehabilitation techniques and » More …