Morality, politics, antiscience, social class, motivation and cognition

Mentor: Dr. Spike W. S. Lee

Associate Professor, Management and Psychology (Cross-Appointed)


Project Description

Broadly speaking, our lab investigates
-(1) mental contents that matter for social life (e.g., moral intuitions, political orientation, subjective social class, antiscience attitudes),
-(2) higher-order mental processes (e.g., judgment and decision-making, lay beliefs, metacognition), often as they influence and are influenced by
-(3) bodily states (e.g., motor action, sensory experience) and
-(4) physical tools (e.g., smartphones, digital devices).

Along these lines, there will be multiple projects for you to choose from. For example, One project will be examining how political liberals and conservatives differ in their motives and cognitive styles. Another project will be investigating how people’s social class shapes their assumptions about what they and others can accomplish in life. Yet another project will be exploring when technology helps vs. hurts people’s ability to think. Whichever project you choose, you’ll be involved in developing your own hypotheses, crafting studies to test them, coordinating data collection, analyzing data, and writing them up for conference presentation or journal publication or both.

For further information on what our lab is currently tackling, be sure to check out (specific research questions) and (broad overview).

Does this project require the SROP Student to be in-person or remote? Either one

Mentorship Statement

I love mentoring students. I find tremendous meaning and fulfillment in it. I had great mentors throughout my own undergraduate and graduate training. Being able to cultivate students as they explore their goals and interests and experience doing scientific thinking and work is a big part of why I love my job. I’ve mentored a large number of students from diverse backgrounds–ethnic, linguistic, and socioeconomic. I’m proud of their successes in numerous areas of work and life (
If you join our lab, the first thing we’ll discuss is what your fundamental values and long-term aspirations are. From there, we’ll identify specific goals and concrete tasks we want to accomplish within a feasible timeframe during summer. I was lucky to have benefited from similar opportunities to this when I was a student. I look forward to supporting you as a budding scholar and scientist.

Project ID 322