Dr Helena Paterson
- Lecturer (Psychology & Neuroscience Education Hub)
R437, 62 Hillhead Street, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G12 8QB
Student hours on zoom Mondays 10:30-12:30
My main interest is in dynamic person perception and this includes attribution such as first impressions, emotion perception and measuring attitudes. Additionally, I do pedagogical research related to learning and teaching with technology.
Currently, I am a lecturer in the School of Psychology with a responsibility for teaching Research Methods and Social Psychology. Previously I completed a PhD Thesis in the School of Psychology at the University of Glasgow and worked as a Post-Doc for Dr. Frank Pollick on an ESRC funded project before starting a British Academy Fellowship. After my fellowship, I worked in a variety of teaching settings and as a consultant in methodology and data analysis for health-related research projects before returning to the School of Psychology as a lecturer.
Human Cognition, Representation, and Development of Dynamic Social Events.
Our every-day world changes constantly, resulting in a dynamic tapestry of events that we must somehow make sense of and interact with. Of the most interesting signals in our dynamic world, are the social signals that allow us to interact with other humans. It seems that the process by which we attribute personality traits, emotions, motivations, and intentions is effortless and unconscious. This has lead to some interesting demonstrations whereby non-human animated objects can appear to have the same qualities as humans and raises the question, how are dynamic social events represented by the human cognitive system. More importantly, how do we develop our representations of social events and the accompanying stereotypes and biases?
Teaching Psychology with Open Science.
With Open Science practices forming an important cornerstone in the advancement of science, it has become increasingly evident that we should be incorporating these practices into the way that science is taught. Examples span from the educational practices that adopt to the kinds of activities that we do and my research is centred on how we can incorporate the practices and philosophy of Open into our teaching.
Dissertation Topics & Possible Studies
Currently, the work in my lab is exploratory in nature and so I will be encouraging honours students to continue work started in previous projects. Typically topics that we have looked at are children's and adults' perceptions of attraction, development of stereotype schemas, cognitive development, perceptions about disability and mental health. When possible, we gather data from participants in public spaces such as the Science Centre and GlasgowLife spaces. We also have rich sources of data in the lab for secondary data analysis based on children's TV watching choices; and we can also gather data online from adult participants. There is a growing ethos of public science communication and open & reproducible science in the lab and I encourage students to take an active role in this.
Finally, all projects in my lab are team-based, meaning that you will work with other students on developing research proposals and/or data gathering; you may work on previously-gathered data and you may work with students in more junior or senior years on projects, and you may continue projects started previously. We run all meetings as group meetings and collaborate as a team to make achievable projects. Current projects are on children's TV-watching preferences, on evaluating a tool for measuring student stigma to mental health or neurodiversity and on person perception.