Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Awards


The College of Liberal Arts’ student body is driven by curiosity and questioning. We encourage all our students to participate in research and help create knowledge. The College of Liberal Arts offers funding opportunities each semester, including summer, to afford students to undertake critical and impactful work. Our Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Awards (LAURAs) are College funded awards with bi-annual calls for proposals.

Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Awards (LAURAs)

The Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Awards (LAURAs). The LAURAs grant $2,000 each to undergraduate student-faculty member duos to conduct a research project over the course of a semester. Each student earns a $15/hour stipend from the grant while spending 100 hours on the project, which enables students to dedicate their time to developing research skills without having to worry about their financial wellbeing.

The Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Awards (LAURA) creates more opportunities for undergraduate students to develop research skills by working with faculty mentors on faculty-led research projects while increasing support for faculty research in the College of Liberal Arts.

Faculty and Student Research Teams

The College of Liberal Arts is pleased to announce the Summer and Fall 2021 LAURA Scholar Awards:

Summer 2021

  • Zain Abdullah (Religion) and student Angelique Vittone (Psychology and Religion) for The Nation of Islam and Social Change, 1955-1975
  • Debra Bangasser (Neuroscience) and student Alexandra Hehn for Effect of a Low Resource Environment on Maternal Motivation and Defensive Behaviors in Rats
  • Lisa Briand (Psychology) and student Brigham Rhoads for Effect of Adolescent Social Isolation and Cocaine Self-Administration on Microglial Morphology
  • Eunice Chen (Psychology) and student Shely Khaikin for Developing Novel fMRI Delivery Systems for Rapidly Dissolving Edible Taste Strips
  • Deborah Drabick (Psychology) and student Aidan Campagnolio for Risk and Resilience for Internalizing and Externalizing Behavior Problems Among Youth Experiencing Adverse Childhood Experiences
  • Tania Giovannetti (Psychology) and student Marina Kaplan for Using Virtual Reality to Assess Everyday Function in Older Adults
  • Travis Glasson (History) and student Maureen Iplenski for Finding the ‘Nobody Men’: Neutrality and Family in the Era of the American Revolution
  • Alexandra Guisinger (Political Science) and student Samuel Hall for Framing Layoffs: Media Coverage, Blame Attribution, and Trade-Related Policy Responses
  • Kevin Henry (Geography and Urban Studies) and student Kelley Alexander Simon for Geographic Disparities in Access to Comprehensive Stroke Centers in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, and Delaware
  • Rebeca Hey-Colón (Spanish and Portuguese) and student Maighdlin Elizabeth Lagonegro-Coar for Channeling Knowledges: Afro-diasporic Waters in Latinx and Caribbean Worlds
  • Kathryn Hirsh-Pasek (Psychology) and student Nicole Toltzis for Multi-communication and Children: The Influence of Technology on Trust and Judgement
  • Johanna Jarcho (Psychology) and student Caroline Kessler for The Effects of Childhood Unpredictability and COVID-Related Sheltering-in-Place on Mental Health
  • Laura McGrath (English) and student Robert Russell Magee for Book Data
  • Laura McGrath (English) and student Robert Russell Magee for Book Data
  • Laura McGrath (English) and student Nikki Gallant for Book Data
  • Alan McPherson (History) and student Igor Piovezan for The Impact of Iran-Contra on U.S. Democracy
  • Lauren Olsen (Sociology) and student Olivia Quartey for Examining Opportunities and Barriers to Underrepresented Student Advancement Along the Premedical Track
  • Vinay Parikh (Psychology) and student Miranda Targum for AChE Regulation and Individual Differences in Cognitive Aging
  • Moritz Ritter (Economics) and student Zainab Malik for Impact of Child Marriage on Human Capital Outcomes
  • Eileen Ryan (History) and student David Devine for Heroes of Italian Unification and the Abolitionist Movement
  • Thomas F Shipley (Psychology) and student Kalya Brown for Robotics Engineering Design Decisions and the Influence of Disciplinary Expertise
  • David V. Smith (Psychology) and student Scott Blender for Causal Modeling of Corticostriatal Connectivity During Reward Processing
  • Sandra Suarez (Political Science) and student Patricia Almodovar for Amazon Women: Technological Change, Housework, and Privacy in Comparative Perspective

Fall 2021

  • Lisa Briand (Psychology) and student Abigail Jurewicz for Influence of Social Isolation During Adolescence on Social reward and Opiate Self-administration
  • Deborah Drabick (Psychology) and student Macy Galante for Prevention of Adolescent Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties Among Low-Income, Urban Youth
  • Petra Goedde (History) and student Macy Galante for Prevention of Adolescent Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties Among Low-Income, Urban Youth
  • Alexandra Guisinger (Political Science) and student Samantha Campbell for Trump Championed the White Working Class Man: Does That Explain the New Partisan Gap in Trade Protection?
  • Chelsea Helion (Psychology) and student Adhya Gowda for Action and Motivation Congruency in Assessing Interpersonal Similarity
  • Judith Levine (Sociology) and student Tara Cunniffe for Landing a Job: Moving from College to Employment in the New Economy
  • Patricia Melzer (French, German, Italian, and Slavic) and student Bri McCaffrey for Accessing and Cataloging Digital Archives for Book Chapter ‘Feminist Militants’ Response to Sexism and Sexual Violence in the Autonomen’
  • Vishnu Murty (Psychology) and student Kathryn Lockwood for The Interactive Effects of Emotional Arousal on Time Perception and Memory Utilizing the Social Media Platform Tik Tok
  • Adam Shellhorse (Spanish and Portuguese) and student Matheus Fronza for The Modalities of Affect: Language, Feeling, and Intensity in Latin American Literature and Art (1924-2021)
  • E. Rely Vilcica (Criminal Justice) and student Sophia M. Shaiman for Bail Reform in the Era of Progressive Prosecution: Philadelphia as a Case Study
  • Hongling Xie (Psychology) and student Anna Stewart for TBody Image and Risky Sexual Behaviors among College Students: The Moderating Role of Dating App Use
  • Lu Zhang (Sociology) and student Shane A. Binot for A Comparative Study of Public Responses to COVID-19 in the United States and China: What Role Do Political Leaders, Experts, and Media Play?
  • Adam Ziegfeld (Political Science) and student Ellen Kamalyan for The Politics of Election Alliances in India

Past LAURA Scholar Awards

Spring 2021

  • Zain Abdullah (Religion) and student Angelique Vittone (Psychology and Religion) for The Nation of Islam and Social Change, 1955-1975
  • Debra Bangasser (Neuroscience) and student Alessandro Jean-Louis for Probability Discounting
  • Jason Chein (Psychology) and student Olivia Bishop for Fake News Belief and Sharing Behaviors in Media Savvy Youth
  • Eunice Chen (Psychology) and student Shely Khaikin for Fasting, Hunger and Neural Response to High-fat, High-sweet Food Pictures
  • Nyron N. Crawford (Political Science) and student Tylir Fowler (Political Science and Economics) for Strike from the Record? Exploring Administrative Burdens in Take-up of Criminal Record Clearance
  • Cristina Gragnani (Italian) and student Andrew Raker for I Believed so Many Things. What a Disaster!: Strategies of Reticence and Misdirection in Anna Franchi’s Autobiography
  • Johanna Jarcho (Psychology) and student Catherine Archambault (Neuroscience) for Effects of Temple COVID Policy on the Relations of Race and Health
  • Philip C. Kendall (Psychology) and student Jacob Blank for Intolerance of Uncertainty Moderates the Relationship Between Change in Family Accommodation and Change in Anxiety Symptom Severity in Clinically Anxious Youth
  • Judith Levine (Sociology) and student Danielle Brodsky for Landing a Job: Moving from College to Employment in the New Economy
  • Michael McCloskey (Psychology) and student Kashish Patel (Neuroscience) for The Effect of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy on Self-Harm Among Individuals with Intermittent Explosive Disorder
  • Alan McPherson (History) and student Kathryn Perrone (Global Studies and Political Science double major) for The Impact of Iran-Contra on US Democracy
  • Patricia Melzer (Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies) and student Frida Clark for Feminist Militancy and Gender Performativity in the (West) German Left-radical Political Movement Autonomen
  • Ajima Olaghere (Criminal Justice) and student Makayla Maynard for Legitimacy in Corrections: Perspectives from Incarcerated Individuals
  • Christina Rosan (Geography and Urban Studies) and student Kyle Cruz for This is Our Story, Our Experience, Our Neighborhood, Our Future”: Digital Storytelling, Story Maps, and Machine Learning to Promote Sustainable Urban Infrastructure in Philadelphia
  • Eileen Ryan (History) and student Bahar Ceylan for Race and Racism in Modern Italy
  • Thomas F Shipley (Psychology) and student Gina Calise for COVID-19 Vaccine dDcision Making: The iIfluence of Outcome Framing and Perceptions of Virus Risk on choice Psychology
  • David V. Smith (Psychology) and student Fatima Umar (Neuroscience) for Meta-Analysis of Striatal Connectivity During Reward Processing
  • Howard Spodek (History) and student Matthew Wolf for After the Homeless Encampments: Implementation of Resolutions
  • Tom Waidzunas (Sociology) and student Sid Feinberg for The Sexuality Scanners: A Sociological Study of Scientific Communities Producing the Sexual Brain
  • Kimberly Williams (Anthropology) and student Matthew Walsh for Reconstructing Mortuary Ritual in Early Bronze Age Oman: The Role of Animals and Fire: Manuscript Preparation
  • Mathieu Wimmer (Psychology) and student Priya Doshi for Creating a rat pain scale using high-speed imaging, dimensionality reduction, and machine learning to better understand the neurobiology of pain
  • Hongling Xie (Psychology) and student Emily Yam for Social Media Behaviors and Different forms of Online and Offline Peer Victimization
  • Amarat Zaatut (Criminal Justice) and student Isabel Apothaker for Scholars’ Perceptions of Qualitative Research and its Utility in Criminology and Criminal Justice: A Comparative Study
  • Janire Zalbidea (Spanish) and student Gillian Smyth for Individual Differences in Foreign and Heritage Language Writing
  • Lu Zhang (Sociology) and student Shane A. Binot (Philosophy and Sociology double major) for A Comparative Study of Public Responses to COVID-19 in the United States and China: What Role Do Political Leaders, Experts, and Media Play?

Fall 2020

  • Rebecca Alpert (Religion) and student Jessica Levine for Jewish Feminists and the UN Decade on Women Oral History Project
  • Tania Giovannetti (Psychology) and student Dhruvi Mehta for Objective Assessment of Cognition and Everyday Function in Older Adults
  • Victor Hugo Gutierrez-Velez (Geography and Urban Studies) and student Evelyn Gorey for Mapping Drivers of Ecosystem Change in a Biodiversity Hotspot in Colombia
  • Andrew Karpinski (Psychology) and student Phiona Tran for Religious Beliefs and Beliefs in Free Will
  • Judith Levine (Sociology) and student Emily Wilson for Landing a Job: Moving from College to Employment in the New Economy
  • Ajima Olaghere (Criminal Justice) and student Makayla Maynard for Legitimacy in Corrections at a Time of Crisis: Perspectives from Incarcerated Individuals
  • Pedro Silos (Economics) and student Samuel Von Mahs for Inferring Risk Aversion from Career Choices
  • David Smith (Psychology) and student Gemma Goldstein for Shared Reward Processing and Substance Use
  • Kimberly Williams (Anthropology) and student Matthew Williams for Reconstructing Mortuary Ritual in Early Bronze Age Oman: The Role of Animals and Fire
  • Janire Zalbidea (Spanish) and student Lytice Gordon for Factors Impacting Foreign Language Reading Comprehension

Summer 2020

  • Colin Chamberlain (Philosophy) and student Callum for Do Minerals Dream? Margaret Cavendish’s Panpsychism
  • Eunice Chen (Psychology) and student Thomas Kelly for Medical Comorbidity and COVID-19
  • Deborah Drabick (Psychology) and student Faylyn Kalchthaler for Do Working Memory Abilities Moderate the Relation between Community Violence and Peer Processes?
  • Jamie Fader (Criminal Justice) and student Shannon McGorry for Mapping the Landscape of School-Based Interrogations: A Pilot Study
  • Tania Giovannetti (Psychology) and student Matthew Ambrogi for Training Older Adults with Cognitive Impairment to Use Assistive Technologies
  • Kristin Gjesdal (Philosophy) and student Andrea Paleos for Germaine de Staël on Implicit Bias
  • Victor Gutierrez (Geography and Urban Studies) and student Evelyn Gorey for Mapping Forest Loss due to Agricultural Expansion in a Hotspot of Ecosystem Change in Colombia
  • Rebeca Hey-Colón (Spanish) and student Sebastián Rangel for Disastrous Beginnings: Caribbean and Latinx Renditions of Emergence
  • Robin Kolodny (Political Science) and student Daisy Confoy for Campaign Finance Allegations in the 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary: Game Changer or Red Herring?
  • Peter Marshall (Psychology) and student Troy Houser for Leveraging the Construct of Embodiment to Advance Developmental Science
  • Alan McPherson (History) and student Alan David Devine for The Iran-Contra Scandal and Its Impact on US Democracy 
  • Thomas Olino (Psychology and Neuroscience) and student Meghan O’Neil for Interacting influences of socioeconomic status and stressful life events on youth anxiety symptoms
  • Thomas Olino (Psychology and Neuroscience) and student Holly Bruns for Interactive influences of depressive symptoms and stressful life events on youth non-suicidal self-injury
  • Hamil Pearsall (Geography and Urban Studies) and student Madison Tablas for Advancing knowledge on social infrastructure systems for health, equity, and well-being
  • Mark Pollack (Political Science) and student Zeinah Latefa for The Trump Administration as a Change Agent in International Law 
  • Leslie Reeder-Myers (Anthropology) and student Kylie Spinello for Changing Cultural and Sacred Landscapes of the Chumash World
  • Aunshul Rege (Criminal Justice) and student Rachel Bleiman for An exploration of trends in ransomware attacks against municipal government facilities
  • Moritz Ritter (Economics) and student Alison Tintera for Firm Organization and Inequality
  • Eileen Ryan (History) and student Megan McGraw for Black Italy
  • Thomas Shipley (Psychology) and student Daniel McGuigan for Exploring heuristics and biases in engineering design
  • Amarat Zaatut (Criminal Justice) and student Isabel Apothaker for Scholars’ Perceptions of Qualitative Research and its Utility in Criminology and Criminal Justice: A Comparative Study