Spring 2018

An Invitation to All Graduate Students Enrolled in a CLAS Degree

An Invitation to All Graduate Students Enrolled in a CLAS Degree or Certificate Program

My name is “Ernie” Zirakzadeh. I am the first Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts and Science to lead its Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. I spent a good deal of calendar year 2017 helping the faculty and staff in the College organize themselves into self-governing councils, committees, and working groups. This semester I would like to serve again as a facilitator, and to help graduate students organize themselves into a college-wide, self-governing unit(s).

Free Food and a Chance To Meet Strangers!

If you would like to work with other graduate students across the College’s many departments and institutes on topics and initiatives related to diversity, equity, and inclusion, please consider attending one of two organizing lunches, hosted by the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

The purpose of the upcoming lunches is to network across the College, to brainstorm about possible initiatives for academic year 2018-2019, and, if possible, to set up an initial coordinating committee that will plan future gatherings of graduate students over the summer.

The lunches are scheduled for

March 19, 12:00-1:00 PM in Oak 408.

March 22, 12:30-1:30 PM in Austin 413.

In Terms of Assumptions

The definitions of “diversity,” “equity,” and “inclusion” will not be determined beforehand. The terms can be as narrow or broad as the participants wish.

Likewise, “initiatives” has an open-ended meaning. It can refer to recruitment and retention policies, mentorship, workshops on classroom pedagogy and awareness, community-outreach projects, and….almost anything you can imagine.

How To Sign Up

If you are interested in attending a lunch, please contact Maryann Markowski as Maryann.Markowski@uconn.edu and let her know which lunch you will be attending.  She needs to hear from you as soon as possible (deadline March 12), so that the appropriate amount of food can be ordered. Also, please inform her of any dietary restrictions you may have.  If you require an accommodation to participate in a meeting, please contact Maryann by March 12.

If you cannot attend a lunch but wish to be informed about the future development of this group, please contact Maryann Markowski, or me at Cyrus.Zirakzadeh@uconn.edu.


Best wishes,

“Ernie” Zirakzadeh

Cyrus Ernesto Zirakzadeh

Professor of Political Science and Associate Dean for the Social Sciences and for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

University of Connecticut

Preferred pronouns: He, his, him

NEW DATE: Cross-Disciplinary Graduate Colloquium – April 6, 2018

Cross-Disciplinary Graduate Colloquium

NEW DATE: Friday, April 6 at 4:00 pm in Bousfield A106

Featuring special presentations by graduate students.  Reception to follow catered by Lizzie’s.


More details and abstracts here: NEWDATE_GradColloquium2018


Behavioral Neuroscience

“Evaluating mechanisms of reward enhancement by nicotine in humans”


Clinical Psychology

“Substance use is associated with decreased HIV serostatus disclosure: An event-level analysis among people living with HIV in the US”


Developmental Psychology

“Atypical category learning in poor comprehenders”


Industrial/Organizational Psychology

“When work is your passenger: Work influences on aggressive driving behavior”


Perception, Action, Cognition

“Perceiving non-native speech sounds: The neural bases of implicit learning”


Social Psychology

“Language analysis of personality differences in bilinguals”

Brought to you by The Department of Psychological Sciences, the Graduate Student Advisory Committee (GSAC), and Graduate Student Senate (GSS)

Fredric M. Jablin Doctoral Dissertation Award


February 7, 2018
Dear Professor:

I want to call your attention to the Fredric M. Jablin Doctoral Dissertation Award, which I hope will interest your doctoral students. A description of the award and the application process can be found at http://jepson.richmond.edu/about/jablin-dissertation-award/index.html.

Established in 1992, the Jepson School of Leadership Studies takes an interdisciplinary approach to the study of leadership. Jepson faculty members make significant contributions to their home disciplines as well as to the field of leadership studies. They come from leading doctoral programs in traditional academic disciplines such as religious studies, philosophy, and social psychology.

This interdisciplinary approach to leadership is reflected in our recent selection of recipients for the Jablin Dissertation Award. Past winners earned their doctorates in such areas as history at Stanford, political science at Michigan State, and religion at Princeton University.

I hope that you will consider nominating one of your doctoral students for the award. I would be most willing to discuss the award with you or any potential recipients you may know. The deadline for applications is April 15, 2018.

Dean, Jepson School of Leadership Studies

CLAS Summer Advising Positions for Graduate Students

The CLAS Academic Services Center is currently hiring summer advisors for Summer Orientation 2018.  They are looking for part-time graduate student advisors.

The graduate student advisors will assist the CLAS Academic Services staff with orientation from Monday May 7, 2018 to Monday July 16, 2018. The deadline for applications is Tuesday February 13, 2018.

Link to the job description and application can be found here: http://clasadvising.uconn.edu/summeradvisorinfo/.

IBRAiN Program: Research Assistantships available

The Connecticut Institute for the Brain and Cognitive Sciences (CT IBACS) is inviting graduate students to apply to the IBACS-BIRC Research Assistantships in Neuroimaging (IBRAiN) Program. 

Assistantships will be funded for 10 hours per week during the Fall (2018) and Spring (2019) semesters at the Brain Imaging Research Center (BIRC). Successful recipients will be trained on cognitive neuroscience methods including one or more of MRI, EEG, tDCS, and TMS. Once trained, assistants will spend their allocated hours at BIRC supporting users of BIRC facilities. This could involve developing and implementing experimental protocols for fMRI, EEG, etc., recruitment and prepping of participants, data analysis, or overseeing use of equipment by others. Applicants will be expected to commit to the full duration of the assistantship (Fall, Spring), and may have the opportunity to pursue their own research projects at BIRC. Subject to funding, these assistantships could be renewed for a second year. Assistants may receive financial support during Summer 2019 to enable them to pursue their own research at BIRC.

Deadline for receipt of applications is midnight (EST) on February 28th.

Priority may be given to applicants who have experience in one or more of the methods in use at BIRC, or whose research might use such methods. Please refer to the full details here.

Brainhack Global Spring 2018


Hello Colleague,

Brainhack Global will occur May 2 – 6, 2018 

We are currently recruiting sites to host local events during Brainhack Global 2018. Each site sets their own schedule and content. The main global event will occur May 2 – 6, 2018, each site will have the flexibility to choose their schedule within this window.

If you would like to host a Brainhack Global event, but cannot do it in this time frame, you can still be apart of Brainhack Global. Video content from different events will be available online for you to show, and members of the Brainhack community will be more than happy to connect with you over video conference for a ignite talk. Could this be the year that the sun never sets on Brainhack?

Brainhack events are collaborative workshops that bring together researchers from disparate backgrounds to work on Neuroscience projects. Building on the success of last year, Brainhack Global 2018 will feature local events occurring over the same period so that they can share content using a variety of collaborative tools.

In addition to time spent collaborating on neuroscience projects, activities at the Brainhack Global will include:
Tutorials on computational skills that are aimed at streamlining your research and making it more reproducible
Keynotes from local neuroscience and methods researchers
Video content from events occurring other Brainhack Global locations
Open conference sessions during which attendees can present their research
If you are interested in this event there are now two ways you can be involved.

1. Host an event.
We are currently recruiting sites to host local events during Brainhack Global 2018. Each site sets their own schedule and content. Hosting an event requires finding a suitable location (can be a classroom, hackerspace, library meeting room, or similar with good network and plenty of power outlets), ordering refreshments, and recruiting participants. More information can be found in the Brainhack step-by-step guide and GigaScience paper. Please email me at cameron.craddock@gmail.com to get started.
2. Help spread the word!
Please forward this email to your colleagues and email lists. All are welcome, regardless of occupation, career level, or research level.

We hope to see you there!

Cameron Craddock, Ph.D.

Psychological Sciences Statistical Consultant Sp’18 Office Hours

Location: BOUS 190C

Adrian Frazier (p.adrian.frazier@gmail.com):
Wednesday 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Experienced with:
• R, Matlab, SPSS, Excel, and SAS (it’s been a while, though)
• Data manipulation, transformation, and visualization (esp. ggplot and plotly)
• Mixed modeling (within subjects variables; lmer; HLM; growth curve analysis)
• Bayes analysis and OpenBUGS (a little bit)
• PsychoPy; Medialab; EPrime (the latter two have been a long time)
• C++ (learning now, but may be able to help)

T. R. Brooks (thomas.brooks@uconn.edu):
Tuesday 9:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Experienced with:
• R, SPSS, Excel (and converting between these)
• Data manipulation, transformation, and visualization
• Linear modeling, time series analysis, multiscale analysis
• PsychoPy

Graduate Class Offering for Sp. 18: The Literate Brain and Mind

Graduate Class Offering for Spring 2018

PSYC 5570- Current Topics in Cognitive Science: The Literate Brain and Mind

Instructor: Kenneth Pugh

 3 credits              1:25PM-4:25PM                Mondays               BOUSA101A

Description: The development of reading and writing skills are essential for achieving success in the modern world, yet significant numbers of people from all languages and cultures fail to obtain adequate literacy outcomes.  This seminar examines the neurobiological and cognitive foundations of reading and writing. The course is aimed at providing students an introduction to research on gene-brain-behavior analyses of typical and atypically developing readers. Topics covered include recent advances in our understanding of the relationship between speech perception/production and individual differences in literacy learning, systems level research on the distributed brain circuits that develop to support word reading, text comprehension, second language learning, and the neurobiology of acquired and developmental reading and writing disorders. We will draw heavily on ongoing developmental research from our team at Haskins focused on early neurocognitive studies of reading difficulties in contrastive languages (including English, Mandarin, Spanish, Finnish, and Dutch). Over the course of the semester students will be able to acquire basic familiarity with cognitive methods and new tools for human brain mapping, and we will critically examine both the promise and the limitations of the current approaches to understanding language and literacy.

Spring Data Science Fellowship Opportunity

Program: The Data Incubator is an intensive 8 week fellowship that prepares masters students, PhDs, and postdocs in STEM and social science fields seeking industry careers as data scientists. The program is free for Fellows and supported by sponsorships from hundreds of employers across multiple industries. In response to the overwhelming interest in our earlier sessions, we will be holding another fellowship.

Who Should Apply: Anyone who has already obtained a masters or PhD degree or who is within one year of graduating with a masters or PhD is welcome to apply. Applications from international students are welcome. Everyone else is encouraged to sign-up for a future session.

Locations: In addition to the below in-person locations, we will have a remote online session:

  • New York City
  • San Francisco Bay Area
  • Seattle
  • Boston
  • Washington, DC.

Dates: All sections will be from 2018-03-26 to 2018-05-18.

Application Link: https://www.thedataincubator.com/fellowship.html?ch=rec&ref=r0988b23042aa

Data Science in 30 minutes: Learn how to build a data-science project in our upcoming free Data Science in 30-minutes webcast. Signup soon as space is limited.

Learn More: You can learn about our fellows at The New York Times, LinkedIn, Amazon, Capital One, or Palantir. To read about our latest fellow alumni, check out our blog. To learn more about The Data Incubator, check us out on Venture Beat, The Next Web, or Harvard Business Review.