Nick Walker was accepted to conduct research this summer at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Department of Psychology. Nick will be working in the field of social psychology under Ph.D. student, William Cox, in Dr. Patricia Devine’s research lab, which focuses on the topic of unconscious prejudice.
According to early reports, laboratory researchers are attracting attention at NCUR, held this year at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. This year’s NCUR is the largest ever, with over 4,000 students and mentors attending.
Congratulations to all lab members who attended this conference!!
Lab member Mason Wehse presented his poster on “Semantic satiation and the comprehension of emotional language.”
Lab member Thomas Haasl with his poster “Exploring the impact of facial fatigue on emotional language comprehension.”
Lab member and McNair scholar Nicholas Walker with his poster, “Reducing the fundamental attribution error by manipulating the mirror neuron system.”
McNair scholar Mindy Thao with her poster, “Exporing differences in embodiment of emotional language comprehension between European Americans and Hmong Americans.”
Dr. David Havas will give a talk at the 24th Annual Meeting of the Society for Text & Discourse, to be held in Chicago on August 4-6. The Society for Text & Discourse is an international, interdisciplinary society of researchers who focus on the study of text and discourse processing and analysis.
The title of the talk will be, “Electrophysiological evidence for a causal role of facial feedback in online emotional language comprehension.”
Students from the lab who attend the conference will be treated to lunch on the day of the presentation, or to a Boat tour.
Lab research conducted by Thomas Haasl was featured at this year’s “Posters in the Rotunda” event at the State Capital. Thomas was among a select group of students to represent UW-Whitewater at the system-wide event. Congratulations to Thomas, who shared the importance of the research being conducted in our lab with State Senator Joe Liebham.
Photos by Craig Schreiner
The Laboratory for Language and Emotion has been featured in an article in Wired. The article poses the question can a computer fall in love? Using the new movie Her as a reference point, the article questions if artificial intelligence is advanced enough to allow computers to feel love. The article also approaches this topic from the perspective of embodied cognition asking if a body is required to feel emotions, such as love. Lab director David Havas, Ph.D. was interviewed for his opinion on the subject and his responses from the interview are featured in the article.
Read the Wired Magazine article.
Annually, the honors society for psychology, Psi Chi, announces several undergraduate research grants. Information about these grants can be found HERE.
Congratulations to Thomas Haasl whose research on the neural mechanisms of facial feedback effects in language was accepted for presentation at MPA this summer in Chicago.
Congratulations (!!) to Thomas Haasl, Mason Wehse, Nicholas Walker, and Mindy Thao (an honorary lab member) whose research abstracts were selected to be presented at NCUR, to be held this spring in Lexington, Kentucky.
The Lab for Language and Emotion had a strong presence at the fall 2013 Undergraduate Research Day, held on the UW-Whitewater campus. In all, there were three poster presentations by students associated with the lab, including Thomas Haasl (pictured), Nick Walker, and Mindy Thao.
Lab member Nicholas Walker is a McNair Scholar. Nick is investigating neural mechanisms that may influence the fundamental attribution error.
From the abstract of Nick’s project, entitled “Reducing the Fundamental Attribution Error by Manipulating the Mirror Neuron System“:
“The Fundamental attribution error (FAE), or the tendency to overestimate dispositional factors and underestimate situational factors while explaining another`s behavior, has been shown to be reduced through training in cognitive empathy. I am interested in the mechanism that is accountable for empathy and how manipulating this mechanism may help in the reduction of the FAE. The mirror neuron system (MNS) has been proposed as a mechanism for empathy. The MNS is a brain network in humans that has been shown to be active both during the performance and the observation of the same action, and during both the experience of emotion and the observation of emotion in others. Thus, the MNS may provide a neural mechanism for empathizing with others. Socially mirrored actions, which putatively engage the MNS of participants, are known to increase the empathic bond between participant dyads. I hypothesize that manipulation of the MNS through socially mirrored actions will increase cognitive empathy and cause a reduction of the FAE. Theorists have proposed that there are two types of empathy (cognitive and emotional), and previous research is equivocal about what type of empathy the MNS is most related to. The purposed study, will evaluate the influence of socially mirrored actions on both emotional and cognitive empathy. “