Carnegie Mellon University

Grad News

As the Grad PR, my mission is to update the department on recent news & events that happen to graduate students. I will thus be providing information on the latest research milestones and achievements of Psychology graduate students, and will keep everyone posted throughout the year.

January & FebruaryArchive of 2021 News | Archive of 2020 News

January & February 2022

I hope that many of you were able to rest during the Spring Break, and on Staff Appreciation Day! I am excited to share the most recent grad news from January & February 2022.

Papers accepted for publication

  • Stevens, P., & Plaut, D. C. (in press). From decomposition to distributed theories of morphological processing in reading. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.

Grants & Awards

  • Trent Cash's research group recently applied for the Esther Katz Rosen Fund Grant. The grant supports work related to the psychological understanding of gifted children and youth.
  • Patience Stevens received a grant from the Center for Behavioral and Decision Research at CMU to support her research.
  • Jenah Black was awarded the 2021 Ingeborg L. and O. Byron Ward Outstanding Thesis Award for her M.S. thesis at Villanova University. The award is annually presented to an exceptional Psychology M.S. thesis.
  • Asal Yunusova applied for a graduate student research award at theSociety for Health Psychology. The name of the submitted proposal is "An attachment security writing intervention for adolescents with irritable bowel syndrome."

Paper submissions & preprints

  • Fiona Horner submitted a first-authored paper entitled "Positive affect prospectively predicts HbA1c among adults recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes" to Diabetes Care.

Conferences & Talks

  • Trent Cash presented his research at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making (SJDM). The name of the project is "How well do parents know their own preferences when making school choice decisions?" 
  • Phoebe Dinh submitted an abstract on one of their infant studies to the Cognitive Development Society conference. The abstract was accepted in February. The name of the project is "Young infants can learn physical causation-at-a-distance with light switch events."
  • Asal Yunusova will be presenting her research at the American Psychosomatic Society conference and at the Society for Behavioral Medicine conference. The first project focuses on depression trajectories among first-year college students, and the second project investigates mindfulness meditation in irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Cassie Eng gave a talk at the Cognitive Developmental Society's pre-conference workshop symposium, which focused on digital media and cognitive development leveraging. The name of the talk was "Cognitive principles in multimedia learning to optimize e-books for children's attention and comprehension: Evidence from eye tracking."

Dissertation proposals

  • Robert Vargas successfully proposed his dissertation entitled "Examining the representational structure of socioenvironmental concepts across black and white Americans" on January 5.
  • Krista Bond successfully proposed her dissertation entitled "Adaptive decision policy dynamics" on January 18.


  • The Psychology Graduate Outreach Program led an engaging workshop focused on growth mindset for 9 to 12 year olds at the YMCA during the last week of February. Special thanks to Chisom Obasih, Krista Bond, and Trent Cash for leading this session, and to Stephanie Permut for contributing to content development.
  • Jeanean Naqvi, Julia Conti, and Patience Stevens have been mentoring high school students participating in the Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair. They've assisted students with their research questions and experiment designs, and will assist with the interpretation and presentation of the results.
  • Cassie Eng created and filmed the Virtual Tour of the Psychology Department, which enabled prospective graduate students to get a sense of our community on Visiting Day even though they were unable to visit campus in-person due to COVID-19. Check out the above link to watch Cassie's excellent introduction to the Psych department!

Missed News

  • Abhishek Dedhe engaged in a COVID crisis data project whose goal was to collect and analyze data pertaining to the knowledge, beliefs, and behaviors of Indian residents of the city of Pune in the hopes of informing governmental policy changes and alleviating Indians' hardships in the face of COVID-19. Please read this interview conducted by CMU's public relations team to learn more about the project.


  • Roderick Seow will be interning at Educational Testing Services (ETS) for two months (June & July) during the Summer 2022.

Congratulations to all the grad students for their outstanding accomplishments and research progress! We wish you all the best for the second part of the Spring semester. 

Stay tuned for the next research updates!