Diversity

diversity and psychology club group photo

The Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Massachusetts is strongly committed to the support and promotion of cultural diversity within the university and surrounding community. Cultural diversity encompasses differences and similarities in race, ethnicity, social class, religion, gender, sexual orientation, ability, and age. Within the department, attention and sensitivity to diversity issues are fostered in course offerings, undergraduate programs, faculty and graduate student research, and clinical practice. A core aspect of awareness and appreciation for diversity is that it promotes respect for others. Diversity is especially valued and encouraged in the student body, faculty, and staff because it enriches both educational experiences and the translation of psychological knowledge into practice.

Diversity News

UMass Amherst and Partners Launch Summer Leadership Academy for Diverse Students in Technology and Engineering

person reading book in front of blackboard with math equations

Top tech and engineering firms join as sponsors in career development effort

A new leadership academy for students of color and women who are interested in careers in technology and engineering was launched today by the Institute of Diversity Sciences (IDS) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

We must stand together to end racism

figures join hands

We are heartbroken and outraged by the recent killing of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man, and the numerous deaths and acts of violence repeatedly endured by the Black community. These horrific events, along with the inequalities brought to light through the pandemic, highlight just how unacceptably far we are from achieving a society in which each of us has the opportunity to fully and safely reach our aspirations.  

Quinnehtukqut McLamore awarded the fifth annual Keith Rayner Memorial Graduate Student Research Award

Quinnehtukqut McLamoreQuinnehtukqut McLamore, a fourth-year student in the Psychology of Peace and Violence concentration of the Social Psychology program working with Dr. Bernhard Leidner, was awarded the fifth annual Keith Rayner Memorial Graduate Student Research Award for the project, Challenge and Threat Framings of COVID-19 Messaging and Downstream Consequences.

Educational app levels the playing field for preschoolers

school children use tablets in classroom

Scientists find Khan Academy app can help bridge the education achievement gap for at-risk children, an important finding during coronavirus-induced remote learning 

As millions of families struggle to keep their children learning while schools are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, preliminary results of a randomized, controlled study led by David Arnold, psychological and brain sciences, show that 4- and 5-year-olds from low income families who used a Khan Academy Kids App for three months at home achieved “substantial gains in their pre-literacy skills that brought them nearly to the national average.” 

Cierra Abellera awarded Yale Ciencia Academy Fellowship

Cierra Abellera
Cierra Abellera

Cierra Abellera, first-year social psychology PhD student, is one of 40 fellows to participate in the Yale Ciencia Academy (YCA) for Career Development. This week, these young science leaders will kick off their year as fellows at an in-person meeting held to coincide with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA (February 13-17, 2020). 

Effect of visualization on students’ understanding of probability concepts

drawing graphs on white board

 

Improving the quality and effectiveness of undergraduate education in STEM fields is crucial for preparing both a diverse workforce and a STEM-literate public that is ready to acknowledge and benefit from the advancement of science. STEM sectors of the economy are showing steady growth and careers in these fields are in demand.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has recently awarded a $300,000 Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) grant to Associate Professors Jeffrey Starns, Andrew Cohen (psychological and brain sciences) and Darrell Earnest (teacher education and curriculum studies). This team will develop and test an instructional program in probabilistic reasoning that is designed to help students overcome math challenges by linking mathematical concepts to an intuitive visualization.

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