Author: Brook Perrigo

Reminder: GA Healthcare Enrollment

Healthcare Enrollment for New Graduate Assistants, Fellows, and Interns

New Appointments:

Beginning August 23, 2019, newly appointed Graduate Assistants and eligible Graduate Interns/Fellows have 31 days from their start date to enroll in or waive healthcare coverage through the Connecticut Partnership Plan. For those who enroll, coverage is effective September 1, 2019. Proof of documentation (e.g., marriage certificate and/or long-form birth certificate) is necessary for any enrollment including a spouse or dependent child.

Late Enrollees:

Late enrollees are eligible participants who do not make an election within 31 days of their start date. Late enrollees may enroll in coverage, effective September 1st, during the GA Open Enrollment Period (April 15 – May 15), or after experiencing a qualifying Life Event that allows for mid-year enrollment, such as loss of coverage through another source.

Continuing Appointments:

Continuing Graduate Assistants, Graduate Interns, and Graduate Fellows who are enrolled in the Connecticut Partnership Plan do not need to take action; coverage will continue with current elections. Plan changes may be made during the annual GA Open Enrollment Period (April 15 – May 15) or following a qualifying Life Event. 

Enroll/Waive Here

CORE-CT access for benefits enrollment will be available beginning on Saturday, August 24th, 2019.

For assistance in online enrollment, review the GA New Hire CORE Job Aid (See “New Employee – GAs” under eBenefits).

For more information, including frequently asked questions, please visit:

For questions regarding enrollment, please contact Benefits & HR Services within the Department of Human Resources at or 860-486-3034.

Workshop: Science & Imagination, 5 Nov. 2019


Inspiring public interest in inquiry and discovery

An academic and public-facing workshop at the University of Connecticut (UConn)

5 November, 2019

Tentative time for public session: 3-5pm

We are living in what has been called a “post-truth” era [1], with an accompanying “post-trust” [2] crisis, where public confidence and interest in science and expertise is declining among significant segments of the public [3]. A tremendous challenge for proponents of scientific and academic inquiry — including scientists themselves, other scholars, educators, and journalists — is communicating not just the “what” of their work, but “why”, “how”, and “who”.

Scientists find the what of their work — the intricate details of research and analyses — fascinating, but communicating passion for details requires explaining why (not just costs and benefits, but intellectual curiosity and the quest for knowledge), how (why scientific progress can be so slow, technically difficult, and expensive), and who (demystifying how one becomes a scientist and opening the gates to underrepresented groups). Inspiring public imagination and interest in science is essential for earning public support for basic and applied research, and reinvigorating interest in scientific careers.  

Our aim with this workshop is to share ideas and brainstorm about ways to effect change. We hope to attract not just the academic community, but teachers, policy makers, students, and any other interested community members. We hope to share our ideas and excitement, and to listen to ideas from the public about how to connect scientists and community members through shared interest in inquiry and discovery. 

Confirmed invited participants so far include:

  • Michael Lynch, University of Connecticut, Philosophy
  • Tim Miller, writer, and science communication specialist, University of Connecticut 
  • Susan Schneider, University of Connecticut, Philosophy
  •  Michael Tanenhaus, University of Rochester, Brain and Cognitive Science
  • Julie Sedivy, writer and language scientist, University of Calgary, Psychology

        This workshop will be sponsored by the UConn interdisciplinary PhD training program in Science of Learning & Art of Communication and the UConn Humanities Institute. It will receive financial support from U.S. National Science Foundation grant 1747486, “Real-world communication: Future directions in the science of communication and the communication of science“, originally awarded to support a 2018 conference honoring Michael Tanenhaus on the occasion of him receiving the Cognitive Science Society Rumelhart Prize.

          [1] For example: (a) Lynch, M. P. (2016, 28 November).Fake News and the Internet Shell Game. New York Times. (b) Keyes, R. (2004). The Post-Truth Era: Dishonest and Deception in Contemporary Life. St. Martin’s Press. (c) Tesich, S. (1992, 13 January). Government of Lies. The Nation.

          [2] A term used by Åsa Wikforss in her public address, “Resisting the Facts”, contributed to a symposium on Presenting Science to the Public in a Post-Truth Era at the University of Connecticut, 24 May, 2019. 

          [3] A recent Pew Research Center survey (Funk, C., Hefferon, M., Kennedy, B., & Johnson, C. [2019, August]. Trust and mistrust in American’s views of scientific experts. Pew Research Center.) found overall trust in scientists to be quite high in the U.S.A. (with 84% of respondents indicating ‘a great deal’ or ‘fair’ amount of confidence in scientists), but support varies with political affiliation and education, and declines dramatically when linked to specific scientific issues that have become topics of political rancor, such as vaccines or climate change.


          Clinical Psychology Research Talk Series

          Clinical Research Seminar 2019-20
          Wednesdays, 12:30-1:25, Bousfield 160


          Kristin Arapuano, Yale University
          Contextualizing brain signatures of vulnerability to health-risk behaviors in the real world


          Diane Quinn, Social Division
          Current research


          Brandi Simonsen, Neag School of Education
          Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS): Building State, District, and School Systems to Support Students


          Nathaniel M. Rickles, School of Pharmacy
          Integrating New & Old Approaches to Changing Patient and Provider Medication Use Behaviors: Applications to Mental Healthcare and Beyond


          Christine Yantz, Clinical Division
          Third party observer effects in neuropsychological assessment


          Valori Ann Banfi, Science Librarian
          Systematic Reviews and Scoping Reviews


          Devin Kearn, Neag School of Education
          Research on brain processes in dyslexia


          Valori Ann Banfi, Science Librarian
          Finding the Big Bucks: Funding Databases

          2019-2020 Psychological Sciences Colloquium Schedule

          September 18, 2019

          Dr. Chi-Ming Chen, Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Connecticut

          Tenure Talk

          Title: TBA

          September 25, 2019

          Dr. Nicole Landi, Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Connecticut

          Tenure Talk

          Title: TBA

          October 23, 2019

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          October 30, 2019

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          November 13, 2019

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          February 5, 2020

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          February 12, 2020 

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          February 26, 2020 

          Open: suggestions are welcome

          March 4, 2020

          Dr. Vic Ferreira, Department of Psychology, UC San Diego.  

          Hosted by the CNC-CT program 

          Title: TBA

          March 25, 2020  

          Dr. Robert Astur, Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Connecticut

          Tenure Talk  

          Title: TBA

          April 8, 2020  

          Dr. Inge-Marie Eigsti, Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Connecticut

          Professor Talk  

          Title: TBA

          April 15, 2020  

          Dr. Ian Stevenson, Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Connecticut

          Tenure Talk  

          Title: TBA



          Graduate Assistants, ELIGIBLE Graduate Interns, AND ELIGIBLE Graduate Fellows who are currently enrolled in the Connecticut Partnership Plan 


          Open Enrollment (April 15- May 15) allows continuing Graduate Assistants, eligible Graduate Interns, and eligible Graduate Fellows to make changes to their existing medical and dental plan elections, including making changes for their eligible dependents, without providing proof of a qualifying life event. Elections or changes made during Open Enrollment are effective September 1, 2019. Any member adding a dependent to their insurance is required to provide proof of the relationship, such as a marriage certificate for a spouse or a long-form birth certificate for a child


          Please note: After May 15, 2019, there will not be an opportunity to make changes to your insurance elections without a verified qualifying life event.


          Graduate Assistants, Graduate Interns, and Graduate Fellows who have not received confirmation of continuation for the 2019-2020 Academic Year and wish to make a change should do so now in the event they are continued.* If you have received confirmation of an appointment continuation from your employing department and do not wish to make any changes, you are not required to take any action to continue your existing coverage.


          Open Enrollment information, including FAQs and rates, is available on the Human Resources website.

          Participate in Open Enrollment


          Dates Available

          Open Enrollment Form

          April 15-May 15

          eBenefits Self-Service

          April 22-May 1

          For questions regarding Open Enrollment, please contact the Benefits and HR Services Unit of the Department of Human Resources at or by telephone at 860-486-3034.

          *Continuation of employment does NOT qualify for a status change to make elections/changes to your coverage. Examples of qualified status changes include birth/adoption of a child, marriage, divorce, and loss of coverage. If you have questions, contact Human Resources to verify if your life event

          Free workshop: The Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH)

          Free Workshop: The Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study Data User Workshop: Making Nationally Representative Inferences from the PATH Study Data

          Dates and Location: August 12 & 13, 2019 in Ann Arbor, Michigan
          Instructors: Katy Edwards (Westat) and Jean Opsomer (Westat)

          The PATH Study is a household-based, nationally representative, longitudinal cohort study of approximately 46,000 adults and youth (ages 12 and up) in the United States. The study was launched in 2011 to inform the FDA’s regulatory activities under the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. This free workshop will consist of a brief overview of the PATH study and detailed discussion of sample design and weights for all types of PATH study data files (including youth, adult, biomarker, and state identifier data files). Participants will also gain hands-on experience working with the data and understanding the weighted results.

          The focus of this workshop will be on understanding and using the PATH study data files, not on a specific analytic approach. The workshop will be a combination of lecture, discussion, and hands-on exercises.

          The course is designed for academic faculty and research professionals as well as for graduate students interested in tobacco regulatory science and/or tobacco biomarkers of exposure. Participants should be comfortable with data analysis software and quantitative research methods. All examples and exercises will utilize SAS statistical software, although participants may use the software of their choice. The workshop will include two full days of instruction and exercises. To get the most out of the workshop, participants should plan to attend both full days.

          Prerequisites: Participants should have a basic understanding of secondary data organization and manipulation, fundamental data analysis skills, working knowledge of a statistical software package (e.g., SAS, Stata, and R) and a substantive interest in tobacco regulatory research.

          Application: Admission to this workshop is competitive. Enrollment is limited. Apply using the ICPSR Summer Program portal. Please upload the following documents with your application:

          • Current curriculum vita with a select list of publications. Please highlight your research interests and any experience and/or coursework relevant to the PATH study summer workshop, particularly prior experience with tobacco research and/or quantitative analytic methods.
          • Research project description. Priority will be given to applicants whose project description indicates interest in using the PATH Study data for tobacco regulatory research. The project description should include references to theory or historical context, how the project extends what is presently known, and why the PATH Study data are needed for the project.

          Application Deadline: May 10, 2019.

          Workshop sponsored by the National Addiction & HIV Data Archive Program.

          For more information, contact the ICPSR Summer Program at or (734) 763-7400.

          President’s Series on Teaching Excellence

          This is the 4th year for this series and our featured speaker will be Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of English Gina Barreca   As you may know, President Herbst launched this initiative 4 years ago as part of our ongoing commitment to help promote teaching excellence among faculty and teaching assistants. Her thinking then as now, was that having opportunities to learn from some of UConn’s best scholar-teachers would be particularly valuable for our TA’s intent on pursuing academic careers.

          RSVP: Register here:

          Date: Tuesday, April 16, 2019:   4:00 pm – 5:00 pm           Konover Auditorium      Wine and Cheese reception – 5:00-6:00 p.m.

          Why Teaching Matters, or Why I Never Turn My Back on a Class  (Gina Barreca )
          Students do not have to make you happy; that’s not their job. You don’t need to make them happy; that’s not your job. Their job is to understand what you’re teaching them and your job is to know precisely why they need to know what you’re teaching them. You’re the authority not because you’re in control of the situation, but because you can provide what they’ll need to carry with them for the rest of their lives. Educating students is about more than just giving them information. It’s about providing context, perspective and illumination.

          [BIRC Speaker Series] Michele Diaz – 5/1 @ 1:30pm

          We are delighted to announce that Professor Michele Diaz, will join us from Pennsylvania State University on Wednesday, May 1st at 1:30pm in Arjona 307 to give her talk: Evidence of age-related phonological impairments in language production. Her current work examines age-related differences in language. Specifically, neural factors that contribute to age-related retention (semantics) and decline (phonology) that have been observed in language production. For more details, including the abstract for this talk, please see the attached flyer.

          *If you would like to meet with Professor Diaz on the day of her visit, please send an email to asap*


          April 8, 9, Lang&Cogntion and ECOM talks: : Peter Langland-Hassan


           Guest Prof. Peter Langland-Hassan of the University of Cincinnati. Langland-Hassan has done very interesting work in both philosophy and psychology, and is engaged in exciting interdisciplinary research projects with philosophical roots. He will be giving two talks (see below). HE’d be happy to meet to discuss any of his work. There are still a couple of slots available to meet with him on Tuesday (at UCHI). If you’d like to meet with him, or join dinner on Mon or Tues please contact to arrange it and cc

          1. A Role for Inner Speech in Abstract Thought:  Results from People with Aphasia, Monday April 8, 3:30-5, Arjona 307 (The Language and Cognition Brown Bag)

          Peter Langland-Hassan, Aimee Dietz, Michael J. Richardson, Frank R. Faries, and Maxwell Gatyas

          What cognitive roles are played by inner speech (or “the little voice in the head”)?  Were we to lose inner speech altogether, are there non-linguistic cognitive tasks that would become more difficult, or even impossible?  I begin with some theoretical background on the relations among inner speech, thought, and language more generally.  Next, our team’s efforts at developing objective measures for assessing inner speech abilities in a population with outer speech deficits are described.  Some of this evidence suggests that inner speech can be more severely affected by stroke than outer speech.  Results from a proprietary semantic memory task, developed for the experiment, are then described.  Each trial of this task was initially normed for a level of “abstractness.”  As would be expected, people with aphasia, on average, scored lower than matched controls across all semantic memory trials.  Interestingly, however, the aphasic population showed proportionately more pronounced difficulties as the trials grew more abstract in nature.  This suggests an especially strong role for language (and inner speech) in specific kinds of categorization tasks that are not overtly language-involving.

          1. Explaining Imagination:  A Reductive Account, Tuesday April 9, 4:30-6, UCHI Seminar Room (Babbidge Lib 4th floor)

          It is a truth universally acknowledged that imagination is a primitive mental state type, irreducible to other mental state types.   This is, at least, “one of four basic claims about imagination that enjoy near universal agreement” (Kind, 2016)[1].  I will challenge this orthodox view, arguing that imagination can in fact be reduced to, and explained in terms of, one’s being other kinds of familiar folk psychological mental states.  The full case for this account is developed in a book I am now completing.  Today I simply aim to clear space for the approach by undermining the most commonly voiced—and seemingly most decisive—reasons for thinking that imagination is irreducible to other mental state types. 

          CCC Flyer

          (For another reminderRegistration for ECOM’s Spring Workshop Communication, Context, Conversation will close April 15. (See attached flyer.) You can register here.

          Graduate Seminar in Academic Writing- April 2019

          Greetings from the Writing Center,

          The second iteration of our 5-week Graduate Seminar in Academic Writing for Spring 2019 is coming up and you can apply for it now if you are interested. The in-person sessions run on Tuesdays, 2pm-4pm, between April 2nd and April 30th. Here is the announcement with the details and the application link: