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PEOPLE

ISABEL HERRERA GUEVARA

Lab Manager

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Born and raised in Tijuana, B.C. Mexico, Isabel graduated from UC San Diego with a B.S. in Psychology with a Specialization in Cognitive Psychology and a Biology minor. At UCSD, Isabel worked as a research assistant at the Social Cognition and Learning Lab studying the development of social cognition in infancy. Isabel is interested in development of our social cognition. In her free time, Isabel enjoys watching shows, reading, petting her housemate’s cat, and walking by the beach!

DR. NADIA CHERNYAK

Lab Director/Principal Investigator

Dr. Chernyak is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Cognitive Sciences at UC - Irvine and the director of the lab. She received her BA and PhD from Cornell University, and completed additional postdoctoral training at various universities in the Boston area, including Brown University, Harvard University, Boston University, and Boston College. Her work investigates the early roots of our social behavior. She is particularly interested in how we can use developmental data to better understand the cognitive building blocks of our understanding of equity, justice, fairness, equality, and social group cognition. Sponsored by the National Science Foundation's CAREER Award, her most recent work has focused on the cognitive and social predictors of our understanding of inequality.
 

CASSIDY WOLFE

Graduate Student

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Cassidy is a Cognitive Science PhD student working with Dr. Nadia Chernyak. Cassidy completed her M.A. in Developmental Psychology at Cornell University in 2021. She also completed her B.A. in Psychology at Cornell University in 2019.

 

Cassidy is interested in researching children’s moral cognition and the relationship between wealth and possibility. Cassidy is particularly interested in how cultural markers impact how children process and form decisions, specifically using an intersectional framework to pit cultural markers against each other. In her free time she enjoys playing with her nieces and nephews, drinking coffee, spending time with her cat, and playing Animal Crossing.

JACQUELINE BECK

Graduate Student

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Jacky is a graduate student working with Dr. Nadia Chernyak. Jacky received her B.S. in Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and worked as a lab manager at the University of Chicago.
 
Jacky is interested in how children’s social environment shapes their beliefs and behaviors. In particular, she is interested in how children from different socioeconomic backgrounds explain concepts of equity, free will, and social mobility. In her free time, she likes to decompress by trying out new food and playing games.

SHARANYA BASHYAM

Graduate Student

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Sharanya is a graduate student working with Dr. Nadia Chernyak. She received her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Hyderabad, an M.A. in Applied Psychology with Specialization in Clinical Psychology from Tata Institue of Social Sciences, Mumbai, and an M.A. in Social Sciences (concentration - Psychology) from the University of Chicago.

 

Sharanya is interested in understanding how being bilingual shapes children's social cognition. She studies how markers such as status and familiarity affect children's language-based social preferences in diverse environments. Apart from research, Sharanya is an avid reader, loves watching the latest K-dramas, hiking, boba, coffee, cooking, and listening to new music.

YUFEI ZONG

Graduate Student

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Yufei grew up in Zibo, a city in East China, and spent her university years in Beijing. She received a B.S. in Psychology from Beijing Normal University, and an M.S. in Developmental and Educational Psychology from Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Yufei is interested in children’s social cognition, particularly how they develop moral cognition and exhibit moral behaviors. In her spare time, Yufei enjoys listening to music, reading novels, exploring various coffee and boba shops, and spending time with her friends.

Research Assistants
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KIANA GEE

RA & SURP Recipient/Social Media Coordinator

Kiana Gee is a fourth-year undergraduate student pursuing her Bachelors of Science in Cognitive Science. She enjoys studying developmental cognition and language acquisition, and she especially loves working with children. In the future she hopes to continue her work with children and further her studies in graduate school. During her free time, she enjoys listening to and playing music, drawing, and spending time with friends and family.

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AUDREY LAGRISOLA

RA & SURP Recipient

Audrey Lagrisola is a fourth year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. She is interested in cognitive development and how nature vs. nurture plays a part in this process. In the future she hopes to further her understanding of people and the brain in graduate school. In her free time, she enjoys playing tennis, trying new foods, and napping. 

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TATI RIOS

RA 

Tati is an undergraduate student pursuing her B.S. in psychology. She is particularly interested in how childhood experiences and mental disorders may affect one's understanding of the social world. She loves working with children and is excited to learn more about cognitive science through a more hands-on approach. In her free time, she enjoys singing along to music, going on walks, and trying new foods :) 

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ELIZABETH RZEPCZYNSKI

RA 

Elizabeth is a fourth-year undergraduate student pursuing a B.S. in Psychology. She plans to pursue her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and is interested in studying the development of prosocial behaviors along with the impacts of technology and social media. In her free time, she enjoys reading, baking, sewing, and spending time with friends :)

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EVELYN RUI YING JIANG

RA 

Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Evelyn Jiang is a second year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Cognitive Sciences. She is particularly interested in developmental cognition and abnormal psychology, and loves working with children. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her dog, reading, and thrifting. 

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KIMBERLY RODRIGUEZ

RA 

Kimberly Rodriguez is a fourth year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. She is interested in how children's environment plays a role in their mental health. She enjoys working with children and has been doing so for about two years. During her free time, she likes playing with her dogs, reading, and going to concerts. 

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VICTORIA MARTINEZ OROZCO

RA 

Victoria Martinez Orozco is an undergraduate student at UCI pursuing her Bachelor's of Science degree in Psychology. She is interested in studying child and adolescent development, specifically, decision making and language acquisition. Once she graduates, she hopes to pursue her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology and help children in underrepresented communities. In her free time she loves to go on walks, drink matcha, and laugh with her friends.

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LANA ISABEL ABAD

RA 

Lana Isabel Abad is a second-year undergraduate student at UCI pursuing a B.S. in Psychology. She is interested in neuropsychology, particularly curious about the underpinnings of brain injuries and cognitive disorders. She hopes to conduct cross-cultural research in this field in the future. In her free time, she dances with UCI's Kaba Modern dance team, and enjoys crocheting, reading, and binging TV shows with her roommates. 

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MADISON KELLEY LEINGANG

RA 

Madison Leingang is a second-year Psych BS major. She is interested in the cognitive development of children and the intersection of psychology and law and has hopes of going to grad school. In her free time, she can be found reading, watching bad reality TV, or looking at pictures of her family dog. 

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ANGELICA MARIE LAZARO

RA 

I am a third-year undergraduate student at UCI pursuing my Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. I am particularly interested in Developmental Psychology and how one's environment and other social influences impact their life trajectories. I love working with children and in the future, I hope to pursue a career in helping children and adolescents from underrepresented population. In my free time, I like catching up with my friends and family, listening to music and watching pretty sunsets. 

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ELLEN WIDJAJA

RA 

Ellen Widjaja is a third year undergraduate student pursuing her Bachelors of Science in Psychology. She is interested in neuropsychology, specifically brain disorders and its effects on behavior, and hopes to go to graduate school in the near future. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family and trying out new cafes and restaurants.

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LEZLY CABALLERO

RA 

Lezly is a third-year undergraduate student pursuing a B.S. in Psychology. She is interested in how children who stem from a multicultural background differ from their mono-cultural counterparts and the developmental effects of clashing cultures on children's cognitive and esteem development. In her free time, she enjoys journaling, listening to music, and building 3D puzzles.

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SABINA MARIA MARGARET LEAL

RA 

Sabina Leal is a third-year undergraduate student at UCI pursuing a B.A. in Psychological Sciences. She is interested in clinical psychology and adolescent cognitive development. In her free time she enjoys hiking, drawing, and spending time with friends.

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MINGRUI YE

RA 

Mingrui is a second-year psychology BS student at UC Irvine. She is interested in exploring how the interplay of childhood environment, parental care, and cultural gender stereotypes impacts children's mental health and subsequent development in areas like problem-solving, character, and emotional well-being. In her free time, she likes to travel, paint flowers, and spend time with friends in nature.

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SOPHIA HYUN IN LEE

RA 

Sophia is a first-year undergraduate student pursuing her Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology. She is particularly interested in the fields of clinical and developmental psychology, including the importance of early childhood environments, psychological disorders, and the role that culture plays in shaping our sense of self. She is also hoping to attend graduate school in the future. In her free time, she loves reading, running, and playing with her dogs.

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DIVYA MODGIL

RA 

Divya Modgil is currently pursuing a B.S in psychology and a B.A in education. She aspires to combine the two interests to specialize in doing assessments/therapy with special education students from low SES background.

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SAMANTHA BO-CHUN YEUNG

RA 

Samantha Yeung is a first-year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Psychology. She is interested in the psychological field of development and specifically how children acquire language. She enjoys working with children and hopes to continue to do so after she graduates. During her free time, she loves to listen to music, watch the San Francisco Giants, and explore new boba spots.

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SEOYOON (YUNI) KIM

RA 

Seoyoon(Yuni) Kim is a second - year undergraduate student double majoring in Art B.A. and Psych B.S. at UCI. She is interested in mental disorders that occur in children and finding therapies or methods that help alleviate the disorder. She hopes to find significant relationships between family/school environments and children that could cause mental disorders. She is also thinking of drawing short comics to introduce these topics in a friendlier approach. During her free time, she loves to sing, dance, draw, collect cute plushies, watch Disney movies, and most importantly spend time with her family.

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MICHELLE PHAM

RA 

Michelle is a third-year undergraduate pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Business Economics with a minor in Psychological Sciences. She is hoping to learn more about the field of psychology, specifically the sector of social psychology. She also wants to incorporate her psychology and business knowledge into her future career. Some things Michelle enjoys doing are going to the gym, listening to music, and doing anything spontaneous with friends outside of the house!

Lab Mascot
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IVY

Lab Cat

Hi, my name is Ivy Elizabeth Wolfe, but you can call me Ivy Cat. I love to eat, play, run and jump! I really really love boxes and paper bags-they are the best! Also my life motto is “closed doors are really only opportunities to find ways to make them open doors, aka by scratching and meowing.

Lab Alumni

Dear wonderful DoSC lab alumni! We'd love to hear from you on what you are up to now. Please consider filling out our alumni form here :)

Former Research Staff

Lucy Stowe (Lab Manager 2020 - 2022; now Ph.D. student in Developmental Psychology at UC Davis)
Sifana Sohail (Lab Manager 2018 - 2020; now: Ph.D. student in Developmental Psychology at Yale University)
Allegra Midgette (Postdoctoral Collaborator 2019-2021; now: Assistant Professor and ACES Fellow at Texas A&M)
Danyang Ma (Project Coordinator 2019 - 2022; now: Ph.D. student in Developmental Psychology at UC Riverside)
Taylor Ashqar (Project Coordinator 2019 - 2023; Master's student in Human Factors at CSU Long Beach)

Jose Ramirez (Project Coordinator 2018 - 2024)

Former Research Assistants

Stephen Sanders (2019)
Sarvenaz Tate (2019)
Ane Avetisyan (2019-2020)
Nina Hoang (2019-2020)
Alek Marantz (2019-2020)
Samia Miss (2019-2020)
Naomi DeLuna (2020)

Michelle Ortiz (2019-2020; now: MA student in Counseling Psychology at Mount St. Mary University)
Jenny Li (2020)
Annie Dinh (2020)
Yunshi Luo (2020; now: MA student in Developmental Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania)
Abe Guevara (2020; now MS Student in Marriage & Family Therapy at Seattle Pacific University)
Ameera Azzam (2019 - 2021)

Katherine Brogan (2019 - 2021; now: Research Coordinator at UCSF)
Rui Zhang (2019 - 2021; now: MA student in I/O Psychology at New York University)
Sahrai Garcia (2019 - 2021)
Erin Conghuyen (2019 - 2021; now: Law Student at UC Hastings School of Law)
Ariel Tan (2021; now: Lab Manager in the UCI Working Memory & Plasticity Lab)
Daisy Mercado (2021; now: Research Staff at UCLA)
Sofia Babool (2021) former Summer Intern
Olivia Ramos Jacquez (2021) former SURF Intern
Isabel Hoffman (2021) former Summer Intern
Kevin Ramirez (2021 - 2022)
Rakat Rahman (2019 - 2022; now: Management Analyst)
Shakira Noriega (2020 - 2022)
Catherine Kagoo (2021 - 2022; now working at a marketing agency in Dallas, TX)
Habiba Amir (2022) former Summer Intern
Tenzing Choeying (2022) former Summer Intern
Jennifer Hodel (2022) former Summer Intern
Jolina Lee (2021 - 2022) former Thesis Student and SURP Recipient
Sophia Ma (2022)

Sophia Tong (2023)

Vivian Nguyen (2021 - 2023; now: School of Psychology PhD Student at UC Riverside) former SURP Recipient 

Jasmine Nguyen (2023)

Cassidy Wong (2021-2023; now:working at a Physical Therapy Clinic and part time ministry with Cru at UCI) former Thesis Student and SURP Recipient 

Lizbeth Romero (2023; now: MA in Human Factors at CSU Long Beach) former SURP Recipient 

Hannah Gonzales (2022-2023; now: Lab Manager at UC Riverside) former SURP Recipient 

Eli Robinson (2023; now: Lab Manager at University of Maryland) former SURP Recipient

Rae Petersen (2022-2023; now: legal internship at an immigration law firm and completing my paralegal certification at UCLA)

Jai'lyn Edwards (2023) former Summer Intern

Daphne Suh (2023) former Summer Intern

Vidusshi Hingad (2023) former Summer Intern

Ashley Sunwoo (2023)

Umiemah Farrukh (2021-2023; now: Lab Manager at USC) former Summer Intern 

Jessie Lee (2021-2024)

 
 
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