Psychology Department Welcomes Four New Faculty

This is a photo of all the new faculty.

The Psychology Department is pleased to announce the addition of four faculty members for the 2018-2019 academic year.

David Braithwaite (Developmental) received his PhD from Indiana University in 2014, and subsequently completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Carnegie Mellon University. The goals of his research are to understand how children learn to think mathematically, to identify personal and environmental factors that affect mathematics learning, and to develop ways of improving mathematics instruction. He employs a combination of descriptive empirical research, intervention studies, and computation modeling to pursue these goals.

Amy Coren (Teaching Faculty) received her PhD in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Texas, Austin in in 2007, and received her J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law in 2010. Dr. Coren was a Fulbright Fellow (2017-2018) to Hungary, where she engaged in teaching and research at the University of Pécs in Institute of Psychology. She is also a member of the Washington D.C. Bar Association and has provided pro bono legal services for indigent clients in the D.C. metro area. She is interested in the intersection of psychology and law - in particular applications related to judgement and decision making and forensic psychology. Dr. Coren will teach various undergraduate courses including Forensic Psychology (PSY 4930), Cognitive Psychology (EXP 3604), General Psychology (PSY 2012), Research Methods (PSY 3213).

Adam Dewan (Neuroscience) received his PhD from the University of Hawaii in 2010. His research focuses on the molecular and cellular basis of sensory perception. Using a combination of genetic, optogenetic, optical imaging, and behavioral techniques, his lab will explore how olfactory perception is mapped and encoded within the brain. Specifically, his research will initially focus on how the organization of the olfactory bulb shapes odor coding in higher brain regions and ultimately odor perception in mice.

Xiaobing Zhang (Neuroscience) received his PhD from the University of Science and Technology of China in 2008. His research focuses on the neural circuits that controls eating behavior and body weight. Using a variety of techniques, including optogenetics, electrophysiology, immunocytochemistry and virus-mediated circuit tracing, he seeks to understand how neural circuits for feeding and reward in the mammalian brain are merged to regulate eating behavior. The ultimate goal of his research is to elucidate how the dysfunction in neural circuits causes eating disorders and obesity.