Students gain experience through study


Breanna Rae Weber

Julie Bender, junior psychology major, is one of the students involved with the psychology study.

Amanda Bagnall-Newman, Layout Manager

The Lakeland College Psychology Laboratory is currently running a research study.

The Psychology Laboratory is conducting the research in order to investigate factors that influence peoples’ opinions of individuals who exhibit certain behaviors.

Some of the factors under consideration are the learning styles of different people and their flexibility in thinking. The study gives both cognitive tests and a survey to participants.

The team is comprised of Jessica Kalmar, assistant professor of psychology, and several psychology majors, including senior Kim Daane, senior Shalome Harden, junior Julie Bender, sophomore Sarah Willihnganz and junior Megan Gomez who also double majors in criminal justice.

The team has spent countless hours working on the psychology study.

“The study has been very successful so far, although we hope a lot more people will participate. I feel that I am getting great experience in my field and am really grateful for the opportunity that I’ve had to be in the psychology lab for the last three years,” said Bender. “This is the first study since I’ve been with the lab that involves Lakeland students and faculty, and I think that it’s really great.”

Kalmar evaluates which students are both prepared for and will most benefit from participating in the laboratory.

“The three psychology professors get together and think about who might benefit the most from a research experience and who has shown academic excellence in psychology,” said Kalmar. “We consider all of these different factors and then offer the opportunity to participate in the psychology lab to the students.”

The students research different ideas for their study. Many national studies leave unanswered questions. The students look to find answers through their study for whichever topic may interest them.

“I really enjoy working with these students,” said Kalmar. “They are very intellectually curious and they bring a lot of unique perspectives to the research. They are five hardworking women who have really put their own stamp on this project and made it what they were interested in.”

The department will share their findings both nationally and with the Lakeland community.

The students will have the opportunity to present the results of the study in a research poster at a conference. Their research could potentially be published in a scientific journal.

Students do not receive academic credit to participate in the laboratory, but many students who go on to pursue graduate school or careers in psychology benefit from the research experience.

The study will continue until enough data is collected. If you are between the ages of 18-65 and are either a student or employee at Lakeland College, you are eligible to partake in the study.

Participants have the right to withdraw from the study at any time. Each research participant is assigned a randomly generated identification number. There will not be any link between participants’ names and their research data.

A $10 Walmart gift card will be given for participating in the study. To schedule an appointment, visit

“I think that the study is going well so far. We haven’t had a lot of participants yet, but all of the appointments that I have done have gone very well. Personally, I’m really enjoying working with the participants and it has been a great learning experience for me!” said Daane.