Research Projects

Our long-term research goals have grown and developed since our respected Research Lab began work in 2000. However, no matter the challenge, everyone remains enthusiastic and dedicated to the tasks at hand. Find out more below.


YouthRISE Summer Program

The purpose of this study is to better understand community experiences and perceptions among Black high school youth residing in Winston-Salem. We hope to better understand high school youths: Subjective well-being, educational and career goals, opportunities and barriers to goal attainment and economic mobility; and perceptions about the community and the importance of involvement. This study will also give our research team data regarding the impact of the Youth RISE summer program: A 10-week summer program for high school youth that uses a youth-led participatory action research (YPAR) framework to position youth as community change agents. This research project is guided by several evidence-based principles that will be used to allow youth to better understand problems in their community and ways to solve them: A focus on collective, rather than individual investigation; a privileging of insider knowledge, and inclusion of voices traditionally silenced in research; and the willingness to engage in action to address a community problem. Parents interested in their child’s participation in this summer program should contact us!


Schools in Context (SEC) Project

There has been an increasing focus on the role of race and culture in school, a setting that is particularly important because it is a frequented context for youth. Using a multi-level, short-term longitudinal design, this study will explore associations among school ethnic diversity, school racial climate, dimensions of school engagement and disengagement, and academic and behavioral outcomes among African American high school students. The M.A.A.D. Lab is currently recruiting high school students for this investigation!


Perceptions About Psychology Specializations (PAPS) Project

Very few studies have focused on the shortage of African Americans in particular psychology sub-disciplines. To assist in resolving the issue of disproportionately low representation of African Americans in many fields of psychology, this investigation explores 1) HBCU students’ and faculty awareness and perceptions of psychology sub-disciplines (e.g., clinical psychology, counseling psychology, school, I/O), 2) factors affecting HBCU students’ interest in and selection of graduate school programs and 3) effective recruitment and retention strategies that graduate programs can use to increase representation of Black students in psychology. The M.A.A.D. Lab is currently recruiting undergraduate psychology majors for this investigation!

Scientist in the Lab

Youths' Experiences in School (YES!) Project

African American students in K-12 education experience pervasive disparities in academic outcomes across all areas of the schooling experience. In order to understand the factors that promote academic achievement among individuals who face adversity, researchers have sought to examine how school environmental factors hold influence over students’ academic adjustment. Drawing from an integrative model of development for ethnic minority children and a process model of engagement, this investigation explored associations between school racial climate, multiple dimensions of school engagement (behavioral, emotional, and cognitive engagement) and academic performance among a sample of 139 African American adolescent youth recruited from a high school in the southeastern region of the United States. Recruitment for this project has ended.

School Kids

RAce in School (RAiS) Project

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