Marcie L. Coulter-Kern, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
604 E. College Avenue
North Manchester, Indiana 46962
Educational Psychology Lab
The Educational Psychology Lab, directed by Dr. Coulter-Kern, produces undergraduate-led research projects each year
These projects are presented at a variety of regional undergraduate research conferences.
If you are interested in joining the lab, please contact Dr. Coulter-Kern at firstname.lastname@example.org
2014 Lab News and Updates
On Friday April 11, 2014, the MU Educational Psychology Lab presented the following four projects at
the 2014 Butler Undergraduate Research Conference.
A link to the entire conference program can be found here: http://www.butler.edu/undergrad-research-conference/
This study examined how stressors differentially affect students across four class standings (i.e. first-year, sophomore, junior, senior). The ten most frequently reported stressors were roommate and living arrangement; money; grades and course work; family, friends and romantic relationships; health; time management; and plans after graduation. The highest reported stressors for students across all four academic class standings were money, course work, grades, and post-graduation plans. In addition, juniors and seniors reported post-graduation plans as a greater stressor than first-year students and sophomores. This information could be used to better develop classes to meet student needs.
This study used focus groups to identify common classroom stressors among college students. During the focus groups participants were asked to answer open-ended questions about their experiences in college classes. The student responses were evaluated to identify the most common stressors. The stressors the students identified included: intimidating professor personality, ineffective syllabi, monotone lectures, scantrons, group work, and nontraditional grading scales. When asked how these classroom stressors affect them they answered that they either get sick, or sleep. When asked how classes could be improved the participants answered that the professors could offer students more choices. The results from this study should provide information beneficial to professors to reduce classroom stress.
In this study we explore what students report as detracting from satisfaction with their overall college experience. To identify the distracting events we created focus groups where students could voice their concerns about their college environment. Through the focus groups we identified the top ten occurrences that students find unfavorable. The results of this study will provide useful information to college administrators about how to restructure the college experience and to create a better learning and living environment for students.
by Jessica Hernandez &. Marcie Coulter-Kern
The purpose of this research is to examine what university students expect out of their course assignments. This study explores the relationship between student satisfaction and assignments that build on four basic transferable skills: writing, oral communication, critical thinking, and research. We will also examine how faculty and students differ on the values they place on various course assignments. Surveys will be used to determine which assignments students and faculty think are the most beneficial to learning. Manchester University professors from five classes will be asked for approval to administer questionnaires during their class period. The professor and his or her students will be asked to read and sign an informed consent form and then fill out the questionnaire that will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. Students will complete questionnaire A and professors will complete questionnaire B. We anticipate finding that student satisfaction increases with the degree to which they perceive course assignments building on one or more of their four transferable skills. The results of this study will provide useful information about course assignments to college faculty.
On Friday April 25, 2014 the lab will present at the 16th Annual Manchester University Student Research Symposium.
2013 Lab News and Updates
Derek Jones & Andrew Kurtz (2013, April). Reasons Why Students Return to College: A Qualitative Analysis. Paper or poster presented at the 14th Annual Student Research Symposium, Bluffton, Ohio, The Annual Student Research Symposium, North Manchester, Indiana, and The 24nd Annual URC Butler University Undergraduate Research Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana.
Ashley Landrum, Louise Magiera, & John McCall (2013, April). Parental Involvement and College Student Academic Success. Paper or poster presented at the 14th Annual Student Research Symposium, Bluffton, Ohio, The 15th Annual Student Research Symposium, North Manchester, Indiana, and The 24nd Annual URC Butler University Undergraduate Research Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana.
Jessica Bostic & Ashlea Koehl (2013, April). The Effects of Vocal Cue-Training on Lie Detection. Paper or poster presented at the 14th Annual Student Research Symposium, Bluffton, Ohio, The 15th Annual Student Research Symposium, North Manchester, Indiana, and The 24nd Annual URC Butler University Undergraduate Research Conference, Indianapolis, Indiana.