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Lasell Students Present at Eastern Psychological Association Meeting

March 11, 2011

On March 10th, several Lasell students presented their research at the Eastern Psychological Association meeting in Cambridge, Mass.

Victoria Sokoly and Caitlyn Pare presented a poster titled, Harnessing Power: Situational Determinants of Energy Use in College Dorms. The two worked jointly with Lori Rosenthal, Associate Professor of Psychology at Lasell College, and fellow student Sabrina Saint-Juste, who is currently studying abroad.

Another group of students, Megan McPherson, Nicole Mello, Katelyn Gormly, Jade Witter, Nisha Cirino and Kate Lyons, presented a project called Factors Affecting Student Attributions Toward Victims of Domestic Violence. Those students worked with Marsha Mirkin, Associate Professor of Psychology.

"It's such an honor to work closely with a faculty member and a fellow student. For our work to get recognized by the Eastern Psychological Association is an accomplishment that I know will follow us all for the rest of our careers," said Sokoly.

Sokoly and Pare used energy data collected from meters installed by a John H. and H. Naomi Tomfohrde Foundation grant to study and monitor energy use in college dormitories at Lasell.

The poster abstract states, "We examined situational characteristics associated with energy use in college dorms and tracked patterns of energy use to identify peak times for effective message targeting. Traditional dorms and smaller dorms used less energy. However, contrary to hypotheses regarding diffusion of responsibility, per-person energy use in small dorms was larger. Implications for designing dorms to minimize carbon emissions and to develop persuasive campaigns will be discussed."

The students studying views toward domestic violence victims investigated whether people were more judgmental of female victims who stayed in the relationship and/or if the individual making the judgment knew about the risks of leaving a relationship. The students found that even if students were told about the risks, they still judged women who stayed more negatively than women who left.

Each November, the Association conference organizers accept applications from those who are interested in presenting at the conference, which are then reviewed and selected by professionals in the field.

Both research projects have been supported by the Research Across the Curriculum initiative funded by a grant from the Davis Educational Foundation.


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