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Current Graduate Students

  • Alexa Barton

    Major Professor: Dr. Dionne Stephens

    Research Areas: Alexa entered the developmental science program in Fall 2017. Alexa's research examines the ways in which community based violence exposure and engagement affects sexual health, substance use, and mental health outcomes. She is examining how these are influenced at different stages of development across diverse populations (e.g. Latin American Diaspora, South Asian). How these are influenced by health policies are also of interest to Alexa.

    Read more about Alexa

    Alexa's Email

  • Starlie Belnap

    Major Professor: Dr. Robert Lickliter

    Research Areas: Starlie entered the developmental science program in Fall 2014. Starlie conducts research on the development of sensory coordination in animals, with a particular interest in the role of motor coordination in perceptual processing, learning and memory. Her research focuses on the influence of prenatal sensory stimulation on neural and physiological development of coordinated movement and its subsequent influence on the developing system. In particular she investigates the role of motor coordination in hemispheric lateralization, social facilitation, and behavioral preferences.

    Starlie's E-Mail

  • Emily Boeving

    Major Professor: Dr. Eliza Nelson

    Research Areas: Emily entered the developmental science program in Fall 2014. Emily’s research focuses on quantifying sociality in human and non-human primates. She is currently utilizing fMRI to characterize the interplay of social and cognitive development, and is developing a novel approach for assessing relationships between social behavior and functional brain connectivity in humans.

    Emily's E-Mail

  • Brittany Boyd

    Major Professor: Dr. Dionne Stephens

    Research Areas: Brittany entered the developmental science program in Fall 2015. Brittany is interested in identifying the ways in which cultural contexts' influence women of color's intimate relationship outcomes at different stages of human development. She is particularly interested in exploring diverse populations' sexual health decision making processes, and the influence of STI acquisition (e.g., HPV and HIV/AIDS) and intimate partner violence experiences (IPV) on these processes.

    Read more about Brittany

    Brittany's Email

  • Elsa Bravo

    Major Professor: Dr. Dionne Stephens

    Research Areas: Elsa entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016.

    Elsa's research examines gender identity, cultural norms, and familial values influence on Latinx's academic goals. Elsa is particularly interested in identifying cultural processes informing Latina's STEM field entry decision making across the academic pipeline.

    Elsa's Research Page

    Elsa's E-Mail

  • Christopher Clifford

    Major Professor: Dr. Bethany Reeb-Sutherland

    Research Areas: Chris entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016. Chris' research interests include multisensory processing, memory and attention, and brain communication in neurotypical and developmentally disabled populations of children and adolescents, primarily through electrophysiological measures.

    Chris' E-Mail

  • John Pablo Currea

    Major Professor: Dr. Robert Lickliter

    Research Areas: Pablo entered the developmental science program in Fall 2015. Inquiring into the development of perceptual systems and their relation to higher mental processes, John currently uses two animal models: the fruit fly and the Bobwhite Quail. In Jamie Theobald’s Insect Neurobiology Lab, John studies the developmental trade-offs between larval (under)feeding and adult fruit fly vision and aspires to understand their sophisticate visual systems in light of their small brains. In Robert Lickliter’s Developmental Psychobiology Lab, he explores the Bobwhite Quail’s prenatal sensory factors that influence the continuing development of perception, cognition, and sociality, such as the effect of sensory and intersensory stimulation, which diffuses through the shell, on the development of visual motion perception and vocal communication.

    Pablo's E-Mail

  • Elizabeth Edgar

    Elizabeth Edgar

    Major Professor: Dr. Lorraine Bahrick

    Research Areas: Elizabeth entered the developmental science program in Fall 2017. 

    Elizabeth's Email

  • Nelcida Garcia

    Major Professor: Dr. Shannon Pruden

    Research Areas: Nelcida entered the developmental science program in Fall 2017. She has a B.S. in psychology and a M.A. in educational psychology. As part of her senior capstone project, she explored potential differences in executive function in bilinguals and monolinguals. Nelcida’s current research interests include bilingualism, language development, executive function and working memory. Her master's project is exploring the relations between executive function and working memory and individual differences in children's spatial ability.

    Nelcida's E-Mail

  • Dea Garic

    Major Professor: Dr. Anthony Dick

    Research Areas: Dea entered the developmental science program in Fall 2015. Dea's research interests center around the neurobiological bases of executive function. Specifically, Dea is interested in examining the development of fiber pathways that are associated with inhibition, initiation, and attentional control in typically developing children using high-angular resolution diffusion-weighted imaging (HARDI).

    Dea's E-Mail

  • Sandy Gonzalez

    Major Professor: Dr. Eliza Nelson

    Research Interests: Sandy entered the developmental science program in Fall 2013. Sandy is researching the interaction between the motor system and language development in infants and toddlers. She is also interested in hand preference trajectories, and early fine motor skills as predictors of later academic achievement. In 2015, Sandy was awarded a MBRS RISE Fellowship to support her education and research.

    Sandy's E-Mail

     

  • Claire Helpingstine

    Major Professor: Dr. Dionne Stephens

    Research Areas: Claire entered the developmental science program in Fall 2017. Her research examines the ways in which gender, racial/ ethnic, and cultural identity perceptions inform perceptions of human trafficking. Claire is also interested in identifying the familial and social network processes that shape the experiences and decision making processes of trafficked victims.

    Read more about Claire

  • Myriah McNew

     

    Major Professor: Dr. Lorraine Bahrick

    Research Areas: Myriah entered the developmental science program in Fall 2015. Myriah's current research interests look at how infants' early abilities and experiences contribute to outcomes. Particularly, relationships amongst the development of attention/perception, social skills, and language. Myriah is using individual differences in multisensory attention and parent-child interactions to longitudinally investigate language outcomes.

    Myriah's Email 

  • Ava Nazarimehrvarani

    Major Professor: Dr. Leslie Frazier

    Research Areas: Ava entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016. Ava primarily focuses on eating behavior and how that influences risks for eating disorders and obesity in childhood and emerging adulthood.

    Ava's E-mail

  • Michelle Ramos

    Major Professor: Dr. Bethany Reeb-Sutherland

    Research Areas: Michelle entered the developmental science program in Fall 2014. Michelle's interests include the pharmacodynamics of drugs of abuse and the reward processing system. She is interested in understanding the development of the reward processing system throughout adolescence as it relates to individual differences in risk-taking propensity. Michelle's work uses electroencephalography (EEG).

    Michelle's E-Mail

  • Ana Lucia Rodriguez

    Major Professor: Dr. Dionne Stephens

    Research Areas: Ana Lucia entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016. Ana Lucia is developing a program of research that seeks to identify the psychological and social impacts of health inequalities, inclusion/exclusion dynamics, and violence in intimate relationships using Network Sciences. She is exploring these phenomena within diverse populations across the Latin American Diaspora.

    Read more about Ana

    Ana's Research Overview Video

    Ana's Email

  • Yanet Ruvalcaba

    Major Professor: Dr. Asia Eaton

    Research Areas: Yanet entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016. Yanet's interests are in intimate partner violence (IPV) and interpersonal relationship dyads. She examines the risk factors associated with IPV victimization and perpetration and the social-cultural influence attributed to these research areas. Yanet is currently funded through the FIU McNair Graduate Fellowship.

    Read more about Yanet

    Yanet's Research Overview Video

    Yanet's Email

  • Megan Taylor

    Major Professor: Dr. Eliza Nelson

    Research Areas: Megan entered the developmental science program in Fall 2016. Megan’s broad research interests include phenomenal consciousness, multisensory perception and motor development. Specifically, she seeks to understand more about the interplay between motor experience and the development of implicit self-awareness in infants and non-human primates.

    Megan's E-Mail

  • Vanessa Vieites

    Major Professor: Dr. Bethany Reeb-Sutherland

    Research Areas: Vanessa entered the developmental science program in Fall 2014. Vanessa is interested in the relations among spatial memory, spatial experience, and hippocampal functioning, as well as gender differences in the ontogeny of spatial anxiety in relation to spatial abilities. Vanessa’s long term goal is to study ways to improve spatial memory and thus reduce the gender gap that is prevalent in STEM fields. Vanessa was awarded a McKnight Fellowship to support her education and research.

    Vanessa's E-Mail