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My STEM Story: Scaling STEM Motivation Through Digital Storytelling and Near Peer Relationships

My STEM Story represents a transformative effort to bridge theory and methods across psychology, journalism, and education to design, test, and disseminate an intervention intended to enhance science motivation and achievement among high school students from groups underrepresented in STEM fields. This project is being funded by the National Science Foundation. 


NSF Abstract | Video Introduction


Developing and Researching Youth-Driven Media that Highlights Science as an Act of Service During a Public Health Crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented an opportunity to leverage the increased visibility of science and scientists in the public sphere to enhance interest and engagement in science among adolescents. This NSF Rapid Response project builds on the success of My STEM Story by exploring how images portraying youth scientists serving their communities through science can shape academic and career identities in science among high school students. 


NSF Abstract


Mindset and academic achievement 

Growth mindset is the belief that intelligence can be changed through effort and hard work. In a series of studies, our lab is examining whether and how mindset—beliefs about the malleability of intelligence—relate to academic outcomes. In one study, we are examining how individuals perceive the mindset beliefs of other people as well as their own, and whether and how these beliefs relate to academic outcomes. In another study, we are examining the link between mindset and mental health in undergraduate students. 


Teaching and Mentoring Open Science

Matt is co-leading a multi-site effort to design and disseminate approaches to improving teaching and mentoring in psychological science as it relates to open and replicable science. This work began as an "unconference" at the 2020 annual meeting of the Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science and is currently ongoing. 


OSF Project Page



Kindergarten schooling effects on behavioral and neural indicators of executive functions and motivation

The transition to elementary school is an important but challenging milestone for children! This project will examine the causal impacts of kindergarten schooling on two foundational cognitive skills—executive functions and motivation—that are important for school success. The project will use behavioral and electrophysiological methods in order to better understand whether and how early schooling experiences shape growth in these skills, with potential implications for early intervention and instructional design.