People

Principal Investigator

Bridgette Martin Hard, PhD

Associate Professor of the Practice, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience

Research Coordinator

Undergraduate Researchers

Sihan (Jen) Wang

Taalin RaoShah

Jessie Goldblatt

Lab Alumni

Jingxuan Liu '22, Undergraduate Honors Student with Bergelson Lab; Bruner Award Recipient

Will matriculate PhD studies at Columbia University

Malorie Lipstein '22, Undergraduate Honors Student; Holton Prize Recipient, Zener Award Recipient

Will pursue career at L'Oréal

Malorie is from New York double majoring in Psychology and Spanish. She was immediately inspired and captivated by her psychology courses, fascinated by the mechanisms behind the behaviors she so regularly witnesses both in herself and in the people around her. At the BRITElab, she is researching the effects of race and gender on students’ perceptions of their professors through online evaluations. Malorie loves to travel, spend time with friends, and eat apples, and she is a member of the cheerleading team at Duke.


Jessica Falbaum '22, Undergraduate Honors Student; Holton Prize Recipient

Will pursue career at Mathematica

Colson is from Charlotte, North Carolina majoring in Psychology. His research is currently investigating the role of stress mindsets in shaping athletes experiences of stress and anxiety within athletics and academics. Outside the classroom, Colson is a member of the varsity Swim and Dive team and enjoys photography, slacklining and backpacking. After graduating he hopes to attend medical school.

Kennedy Sun '22, Undergraduate Honors Student

Will matriculate at George Washington University School of Medicine

Kennedy is from Wake Forest, NC majoring in Psychology and minoring in Biology and Chemistry. As she took classes in different disciplines at Duke, she realized she was consistently excited about her psychology courses and found herself relating the course content to her daily life often. At the BRITE Lab, Kennedy is exploring the expectations of a ‘successful’ college student and how students self-perceptions of success affect their wellbeing. Beyond the lab and research, Kennedy enjoys spending time with friends, trying different pizza restaurants, going for walks, and is a member of the Duke Cheerleading squad—she loves to support Duke athletics. After college, Kennedy hopes to attend medical school and use her psychology background to approach healthcare with a well-rounded viewpoint.

Colson Zucker '22, Undergraduate Honors Student

Will begin at Hospital for Special Surgery as RA

Colson is from Charlotte, North Carolina majoring in Psychology. His research is currently investigating the role of stress mindsets in shaping athletes experiences of stress and anxiety within athletics and academics. Outside the classroom, Colson is a member of the varsity Swim and Dive team and enjoys photography, slacklining and backpacking. After graduating he hopes to attend medical school.

Leigh Marshall '22, Undergraduate RA

Leigh Marshall is from Philadelphia majoring in Public Policy, minoring in Psychology, and pursuing the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Certificate. After taking Psychology 101 during her first semester at Duke, she knew that she wanted to continue to take psychology classes and get further involved with the department. In the BRITE Lab, Leigh is currently working on a study that researches what the best online class lecture formats are for students. This past summer Leigh interned at the Duckworth Lab at the University of Pennsylvania. She helped to transition Dr. Angela Duckworth's "Grit Lab" seminar to online and researched the phenomenology of cell phone use in adolescents. Outside of research, she serves as the Vice President of Entrepreneurship for Business Oriented Women, is a Head Tour Guide for Duke admissions, and works at the Center of Science and Justice. In her free time, Leigh enjoys yoga, baking, and spending time with friends and family.

Haley Blank '22, Undergraduate RA

Haley studied Psychology and participated in research in the BRITElab. Her research focuses on how class room seating in a lecture hall affects students experiences in the classroom. More generally, her research interests include how manipulating different aspects of a classroom environment and learning mechanisms will impact students to try and find the most effective tools for learning.

Priyanka Fernandes '22

Undergraduate RA

Priyanka is from Charleston, South Carolina and majored in Psychology and minoring in Chemistry. After taking Dr. Hard’s psychology 101 class, she decided to pursue psychology research and hopes to focus on studying tactics, stress, and anxiety. Outside of the classroom, Priyanka plays on the Duke Club volleyball team, mentors middle school girls at the Emily K. Center, helps lead a pre-orientation philanthropy program (Project BUILD), and throws birthday parties for the children in the Duke Children’s Hospital. Priyanka is so excited to be working in this lab (Dr. Hard is literally a celebrity to her) and will be attending medical school after graduating.

Emma Hirschkop '22, Undergraduate RA

Emma is from San Francisco, California majoring in psychology with a certificate in markets and management (MMS). She joined the BRITE lab after taking Bridgette Hard's psychology 101 course and since joining the lab, had focussed on researching intelligence mindsets among Duke students. Outside of the BRITE lab, Emma is involved in Duke Club Tennis, Business Oriented Women (BOW), FEMMES, and works for a tea company (Republic of Tea). After Duke, she wants to get her MBA.

Janette Levin '21, Undergraduate Honors Student; Holton Prize Top Honors Recipient

Pursuing career with Teach for America

Janette Levin majored in Psychology with a certificate in the Markets and Management Studies program. Janette is interested in a broad range of research including exam anxiety and performance, psychological effects of technology, as well as race relations and how it impacts students and teachers both in and outside the classroom. In previous semesters, Janette has worked in the Svetlova lab, a child empathy development project at Duke studying children’s developing abilities to understand others’ emotions and beliefs. Outside of her studies, Janette is Project BUILD leader, a GANO english tutor for hispanic residents of the triangle area, a Duke BOW member, and has participated in DukeEngage as well as a semester abroad in Copenhagen. She is thinking of concentrating her studies in child psychology and hopes to attend graduate school to pursue her passion in the field.

Adam Zimmer '21, Undergraduate Honors Student

Will matriculate at University of Washington School of Medicine

Adam Zimmer majored in psychology and minoring in chemistry. His research focuses on student-athlete mindset and well-being with the goal of understanding student athlete experience at universities with selective admission processes. In 2020, he was a summer Psychology VIP scholar where he started his research on student-athletes. He is on the Duke men’s varsity swim team, serves as an ACTION mentor for freshman student athletes, and volunteers at the Duke children’s hospital. After college, he plans on attending medical school.

Kayley Dotson '21, Collaborator; Undergraduate Honors Student with Tomasello Lab

Kayley Dotson majored in Psychology and French. Kayley found her passion for psychology in her first year at Duke in introductory psychology. She is interested in how students take notes and study, as well as strategies to improve such habits. She is also interested in how to maintain student attention in the classroom. In addition to working in the BRITE lab, Kayley works in the Tomasello lab, a child development lab at Duke. She has worked on a project investigating when and why children conform to norms, and she is currently working on a project investigating friendship. Outside of the classroom, Kayley loves comedy and is in a sketch comedy group on campus called Inside Joke. She loves to travel and participated in Duke-in-Aix as well as the Duke in Paris summer program. She is also a first-year advisory counselor (FAC), where she welcomes new blue devils when they first arrive in the fall. Kayley hopes to attend graduate school to obtain a Ph.D. in psychology.

Michelle Wong '20, Former BRITElab research coordinator; Undergraduate Honors Student; Holton Prize HM

Will matriculate PhD studies at Harvard University

Michelle graduated with distinction in May 2020 with a self-designed degree (Program II) titled Neuroanthropology in Pedagogy, Policy, and Practice. Her program of study explores the intersections of human cognitive science, science communication, and building novel, evidence-based practices for everyday classrooms. Prior to joining the BRITElab, she worked in neurobiology research at Scripps in her home city, San Diego, the Marsh Lab at Duke focusing on learning and memory, and the Gopnik lab at UC Berkeley, seeing how toddlers use patterns to learn cause-and-effect. She volunteered with Durham classrooms with Partners for Success, where her interest in science, society, and classrooms began. Michelle's current research in the BRITElab focuses on metaphorical lay theories and how they affect students' attitudes and behaviors. Outside of research, Michelle volunteers at the puppy kindergarten and trains aerial silks in her free time.

Vivian Iva '19, Former Research Coordinator

Pursuing career in Mental Health Counseling and Art Therapy

Vivian Iva is the former Research Coordinator of the BRITE Lab. Vivian graduated from Duke University with a double-major in Psychology and Visual Arts. She earned her degree with distinction, completing her senior-year thesis research project at the Tomasello Lab with a study focused on 5-year-old children’s developing understanding of social norms. Her involvement in the art department of Duke was very meaningful to her as well: she regularly participated in student showcases throughout her college experience and curated a solo exhibit of her artworks during her Senior year. Vivian discovered her love for Psychology when she took Human Development taught by Dr. Pamela Maxson, who became her mentor, role-model, and inspiration. Vivian is particularly interested in social and evolutionary psychology: she is fascinated with questions relating to the causes and nature of group-based social inequality and science-based strategies to decrease it. After completing her work as a Research Coordinator, she decided to pursue a career in Mental Health Counseling and Art Therapy. Outside of work, Vivian enjoys reading autobiographies and works of fiction, going to the gym, exploring Durham, spending time with her friends, and taking pictures of her adorable cat Mimi.

Ceren Ebrem '20, Undergraduate Honors Student; Zener Award Recipient

Associate Consultant for Mastercard Advisors, under Data and Services division

Ceren Ebrem graduated in 2020 as a double-major in Psychology and Economics. After coming to Duke as a Pratt student, she fell in love with the first psychology class she took here, a first-year seminar, and had a drastic change in her academic track. Prior to the BRITElab, she worked in the Translational Center for Stress-Related Disorders lab at the Duke Hospital, working on a Teen Alcohol Outcomes Study. Her initial research focused on change in stress levels in adolescence and the role of gender. During her junior year, she became involved in the Costanzo Teaching Fellowship and started wanting to learn more about teaching and student outcomes. Her current research at the BRITE lab focuses on the role of student mindsets about the nature of intelligence, and how this relates to student wellbeing, motivation, and response to challenges. Outside of the classroom, Ceren is involved with the Baldwin Scholars program, started a house course called “Women’s Empowerment at Duke and Beyond”, and is a Cameron Crazie! She studied abroad in London with the Duke in London Finance program. She will plan on working as associate consultant for Mastercard Advisors for two years, and may consider I applying for a PhD in 3 years, as she figures out where she wants to live between th U.S., Europe, and Turkey. She is from Istanbul, Turkey, and has an Italian step-father.

Katie Herrmann '19, Undergraduate Honors Student

Pursuing career at EAB

Katie Herrmann graduated in 2019 with a major in psychology and minors in economics and Spanish. Katie began her involvement in the BRITE lab the summer before her senior year through the VIP program, where she had the opportunity to start her thesis research. Throughout senior year, she conducted her honors thesis which centered on an exam anxiety video intervention intended to help mitigate the effects of exam anxiety on performance. While at Duke, Katie was a Costanzo Teaching Fellow, a Project BUILD leader, and participated in both DukeEngage and Duke in Madrid. She is beginning her post-graduation career at EAB, a best-practices education consulting firm, this August as an associate on their research team. Here, she is excited to continue working at the cross of education and research.

Anna Jenkins '19, Undergraduate Honors Student

2019-20 Fulbright Scholar; will matriculate at Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine

Anna Jenkins graduated in 2019 with a major in psychology and minors in chemistry and German. Anna first joined the BRITE Lab her junior year when she began an independent study on stress mindsets. Her senior year, she conducted an honors thesis to examine how students’ beliefs about stress impact their health and academic performance. While at Duke, she was on the varsity rowing team and enjoyed applying her studies to think about how stress might affect athletic performance. Anna is spending the 2019-2020 school year teaching in Germany as a Fulbright Scholar. She hopes to continue learning more about how students learn and how as a teacher she can keep them motivated. Anna hopes to matriculate into medical school in 2020.

Joshua Lovett '18, Undergraduate Honors Student

2018-21 Fulbright Scholar; will matriculate PhD studies at UIC

Joshua Lovett is a recently graduated psychology major with a passion for teaching that began with his DukeEngage South Korea experience in 2015. In the BRITElab, Josh studied what students perceive as the long-term benefit of taking an introductory psychology course. Josh is actively involved in research broadly in educational psychology. As a first-generation college student, Josh hopes to improve educational outcomes for low-income and first-generation students using his knowledge from both education and psychology. In his senior honors thesis, Josh is exploring the barriers first-generation students encounter at highly-selective universities and how these challenges impact identity development. During his senior year, Josh served as a Philip R. Costanzo Teaching Fellow, where he worked as part of a team of faculty and undergraduates to deliver a high-quality educational experience in introductory psychology. Josh was also involved is a variety of activities outside of the classroom at Duke. He served as the President of Liberty in North Korea, a human rights advocacy group, and the President of the Arts Theme House Selective Living Group. Furthermore, Josh served as a peer mentor for the Rubinstein Scholars Program, a competitive scholarship for first-generation students attending Duke University. For the next few years, Josh will be a Fulbright Fellow in South Korea. After his fellowship is complete, Josh plans to attend graduate school to obtain his Ph.D. in educational psychology and eventually become a professor.

Collaborators