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NSF-REU Summer Internship: Development of Social Cognition Lab at University of California, Irvine

Dates: June 10 - August 16, 2024 (10 weeks)


The Development of Social Cognition Lab at UC Irvine (Director: Dr. Nadia Chernyak; website: is looking for highly motivated undergraduates to participate in a Summer 2024 NSF-REU program. We are offering 1-2 10-week summer internships with a stipend of $4,000. Interns will work on NSF-funded projects relating to cognitive predictors of inequality. We currently run studies with 3- to 8-year-olds in-person and online.


Funding is guaranteed for all accepted students. The internship will include -- first and foremost, hands-on experience with cognitive development research; mentorship and guidance, including career planning, programming training, and mentorship on research presentation, research design, and data analysis. The dates for the internship will be June 10th - August 16th, 2024. Interns must commit to being in-person at UC-Irvine for the entire duration of the program. Internship duties will include some data collection on Saturdays.


Interns should have an interest in projects relating to cognitive influences of social inequality. These projects investigate the development of young children’s abilities to reason about inequality.


Duties will include recruitment of participants, data collection, working with children, coding and analyzing data, and attending lab meetings. Interns will also engage in community outreach efforts (talk to parents about child development), read extant literature on cognitive development, and work directly with senior lab members and the PI; and present their projects to the lab community at the conclusion of their internship.



  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident

  • Be a full-time student

  • Ability to make a full-time commitment (40 hours/week) during the internship period

  • Proficiency in writing and communicating in English

  • Comfort interacting with children 3-8 years of age, as well as parents

  • Interest in cognitive development

  • Attention to detail

  • Basic computer skills

  • Some background in psychology coursework

  • Interest and passion for cognitive development, as well as for community outreach.

Preferred, but not mandatory:

  • Minimum 3.0 G.P.A. in Psychology classes.

  • Previous experience working with children

Positions are ideal for those interested in gaining research experience and an introduction to developmental cognitive psychology research in particular. We especially encourage people to apply who have not had opportunities to gain extensive research experience through their home institutions. If interested, please send:

      a. your resume (including relevant coursework and previous research experience)

      b. cover letter (including a brief description of academic and research interests)

      c. unofficial transcript, and

      d. the name of 1 person (ideally, faculty that may be contacted for a reference)


Please send all materials and/or questions to with “2024 Summer Internship” in the subject line. We will begin reviewing applications on March 1st so please plan to submit your application by then to guarantee that your materials are reviewed.

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