Leigh Ann Vaughn

Professor, Psychology

This team is not accepting students for spring 2024 because Prof. Vaughn will be on sabbatical leave that semester. Prof. Vaughn is happy to talk with you about her team for fall 2024.

Research questions for fall 2023 include:

  • What do people look for in a romantic partner?
  • How do people get themselves in the right frame of mind to do well in companies, neighborhoods, and other groups that have tighter or looser social norms?
  • How well do research findings replicate at Ithaca College and around the world? (Our team is part of an international research replicability project with more than 360 collaborating institutions.)

The idea of doing research might seem intimidating, but the way we do it on this team makes it fun and not as hard as you might expect. Working together makes our research fun. Students have a lot of voice in the design of the studies, and we all work together in troubleshooting them. We analyze data together, figure out what results mean, and write up results to present at professional conferences.

The work outside of class is highly consistent week to week, and takes 4-5 hours per week. Almost every week, students run a research session in a lab, recruit for research participants, read an assigned research article, do 1-2 short writing assignments, analyze data from our studies, and do group presentations for our team. These activities build research skills that are great for graduate school, including literature review, working closely with others on research, writing in APA style, and analyzing data using SPSS.

Every year, we present our work at the Annual Convention of the Eastern Psychological Association and other professional conferences. In the past 10 years, over 60 of my research team students and I have co-authored and presented 40 posters at professional conferences.