Newsletter Section


The Department Welcomes New Faculty

The Department has three new faculty members joining our ranks this year. They each hold the unique distinction of joining us from other departments or positions at the UW. Shannon Dorsey joins us from the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences as an Associate Professor in our Child Clinical area. Shannon’s research focuses on treatment for youth impacted by trauma both domestically and internationally including in Africa and Southeast Asia. Mary Larimer joins us from Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences as a Professor in our Adult Clinical area. Mary’s research focuses on prevention and treatment of alcohol problems in adolescents and college students. Finally, Andrea Stocco joins us from UW’s Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences as a Research Assistant Professor in our Cognition and Perception area. Andrea’s research focuses on the representation of rules in the brain and the neural mechanisms that underlie flexible decision making. All three represent outstanding new additions to our Department and we are privileged to have them join us.

2013 Edwards Lecture Series: The Science of Psychology in the Real World

In each year since 2004, the Psychology Department has hosted a public lecture series made possible by a generous endowment by Professor Allen Louis Edwards who was affiliated with the University of Washington’s Department of Psychology from his arrival in 1944 as an Associate Professor to his death in 1994. In this annual series, world renowned leaders in a variety of Psychology research areas join our faculty for three evening public lectures on important issues facing our society.

This year, the 8th Annual Public Lecture Series addresses the theme of The Science of Psychology in the Real World. Our three featured faculty include: Dr. Peter Kahn (Feb. 20), Dr. Kevin King (Feb. 27), and Dr. Geoffrey Loftus (Mar. 6). Descriptions of their upcoming lectures can be found below. Also, you will find the names of the world renowned colleagues who have been invited to participate in each of the lectures. Online registration will open on January 16, 2013, so be sure to save the dates. We hope to see you there!


Ecopsychology: Reinventing the Human-Nature Relationship in the Digital Age

February 20, 2013, 7-9 pm, Kane Hall Room 130

Peter Kahn, Professor

Peter Kahn, Ph.D.Abundant recent research demonstrates our physical and psychological need for nature. And ecological sustainability—humanity living in mutually enhancing relationship with the rest of nature—may well be impossible unless people care for the places they live, together with the other species that inhabit these places. Yet here in the high-tech 21st Century, humans have become more alienated from nature than ever before. At this perilous moment in history, how can we broker a new human-nature relationship, one that embraces both technology and the natural world? In a provocative presentation, Peter Kahn and Scott Sampson will take up this pressing challenge, encompassed within the growing field of ecopsychology. They will outline a future where people optimize their wellbeing and flourish in relationship with nature, and explore the path that will take us there. 

For more information on Professor Kahn’s research, visit his website at:

Dr. Scott Sampson (Paleontologist and Science Communicator) will be joining Dr. Kahn for the February 20, 2013 lecture.


The New Science of Adolescence: Understanding Risky Behavior

February 27, 2013, 7-9pm, Kane Hall Room 130

Kevin King, Associate Professor 

Kevin King, Ph.D.Adolescence is a time of tremendous growth, change and maturation, but it is also the developmental period when a wide range of risky behaviors are most common, including alcohol and drug use, delinquency, risky sexual behavior, speeding, and smoking. Indeed, the leading causes of death and disability among adolescents are the end result of these kinds of risk behaviors. But typical approaches to prevention, which focus on increasing knowledge about the risks of these behaviors, have failed to produce reductions in adolescent risk taking. These lectures will discuss the latest brain and behavioral science of adolescence that explain why providing information, or asking adolescents to think more carefully and try harder generally does not succeed in changing behavior and what we can do to promote positive behaviors in adolescents.

For more information on Professor King’s research, visit his website at: 

Dr. Laurence Steinberg (Distinguished University Professor, Professor of Psychology, Temple University) will be joining Dr. King for the February 27, 2013 lecture.


Human Memory and the Law

March 6, 2013, 7-9pm, Kane Hall Room 130

Geoffrey Loftus, Professor

Geoffrey Loftus, Ph.D.In numerous legal cases, resolution of critical questions rests on an understanding of human cognition. For the past four decades, experimental psychologists have been testifying in court as expert witnesses who can educate juries about various aspects of how the human mind works. The goal of such testimony is that the jurors be able to use scientific information provided by the expert as a tool to assist them in their job of arriving at a verdict. We will illustrate the nature of such expert testimony by describing our own participation in homicide cases which, although all very different from one another, all critically involved various aspects of human perception, attention, and memory.


For more information on Professor Loftus’ research, visit his website at:

Dr. Beth Loftus (Distinguished Professor of Social Ecology, and Professor of Law, and Cognitive Science, University of California, Irvine) will be joining Dr. Geoff Loftus for the March 6, 2013 lecture.

Faculty Accomplishments

David Barash
David Barash, Ph.D.
David Barash’s opinion article, titled “Who’s In Charge Inside Your Head?” was featured in the New York Times on October 6.
You can read the article here:
Michael Beecher
Michael Beecher, Ph.D.
Michael Beecher was selected for a four-year term on College Council starting fall quarter 2012. The council is advisory to the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences on matters such as tenure and promotion, administrative and curricular policy, and budget policies and procedures. It will be great to have Psychology represented on the Council. Thanks Mike for stepping into this important leadership position!
Ana Mari Cauce
Ana Mari Cauce, Ph.D.
In August, Ana Mari Cauce was made a member in the Washington State Academy of Sciences.
Sapna Cheryan
Sapna Cheryan, Ph.D.
Sapna Cheryan was awarded a Visiting Scholar position at the Russell Sage Foundation in New York City. She is spending the 2012-2013 academic year at the Foundation's headquarters, along with 18 other faculty who were selected to investigate topics in the social and behavioral sciences. Sapna will continue her research on diversity, with a focus on investigating stereotypes of immigrants. For more about the foundation:
William George
William George, Ph.D.
William George and Kelly Davis received a Notice of Award which will fund their project on Women’s HIV Risk: Alcohol Intoxication and Sexual Victimization History for another five years. The project continues a program of research investigating the roles of acute alcohol intoxication and sexual victimization history in STI/HIV-related sexual risk taking in women
John Gottman John Gottman and the Gottman Relationship Institute were referenced in an article this week, by the Wall Street Journal - Smart Money, titled “10 Things Your Marriage Counselor Won’t Say.” You can read the article here:
Jeansok Kim
Jeansok Kim, Ph.D.
Jeansok Kim has just been named the president-elect of the Pavlovian Society for the year 2013-2014. You can learn more about the society here:
Randy Kyes
Randy Kyes, Ph.D.
Randy Kyes’ recent work on a field course for middle and high school students at the Quileute Tribal School, in La Push, WA, was mentioned in UW Primate Center webpage. The course was titled “College Prep-Field Course in Conservation Biology & Global Health: At the Human-Environment Interface.” You can read the article here:
Liliana Lengua
Lilana Lengua, Ph.D.
In October, Liliana Lengua was interviewed by UW Today for an article titled “Back to School Tips for Parents from UW Psychologists.” You can read that article here:
Marsha Linehan
Marsha Linehan, Ph.D.
Marsha Linehan was awarded the prestigious 2012 American Psychological Foundation (APF) Gold Medal Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Application of Psychology. Linehan developed Dialectic Behavior Therapy, a cognitive behavioral treatment originally created to treat suicidal patients and now the standard treatment for borderline personality disorder. The award was presented at the APA convention in Orlando, FL, on August 3rd. For more info about this award go to
Lois McDermott
Lois McDermott, Ph.D.
The Alpha Lambda chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta on the University of Washington campus nominated Lois McDermott for Kappa Alpha Theta Fraternity’s Ten Outstanding Faculty Members. Over 120 applications were received from chapters across the United States and Canada.
Joe Sisneros
Joe Sisneros, Ph.D.
In September, Joe Sisneros and Ashwin Bhandiwad took their recorders out to West Seattle, on Labor Day weekend, after there was some talk about a mystery hum being heard around parts of West Seattle at night. Joe Sisneros was interviewed by Associated Press about the possibility that the hum might be made by Midshipman fish. This interview spawned several news stories about the fish and the mystery sound. In the end it was determined that the fish were not the source of the hum. You can read some of the articles here:,,
Ron Smith & Frank Smoll
Ron Smith, Ph.D.
Frank Smoll, Ph.D.
On October 1, the coaching-behavior research of Ron Smith and Frank Smoll was featured in the Chronicle of Evidence-Based Mentoring. You can read the article here:
Frank Smoll
Frank Smoll, Ph.D.
On July 10, Frank Smoll was interviewed for an Associated Press article titled “Coaching your Own Kid Brings Pressures, Rewards,” by Lisa Flam. You can read the article here: During the Olympics, Frank Smoll was interviewed for an MSNBC story titled "Olympic Sprinter Breaks Leg, Keeps Running." Here is that article: can also listen to the MP3here In September, Frank Smoll was interviewed for a Yakima Herald article on early talent identification in youth sports. You can read the article here:
Wendy Stone
Wendy Stone, Ph.D.
In October, Wendy Stone was quoted in the APA Monitor (page 59) in an article titled Catching Autism Earlier. You can view this article here: