Web Analytics
top of page
Current members
Andrei Cimpian
Andrei Cimpian CV
Google Scholar

Professor of Psychology

New York University


Email: andrei.cimpian@nyu.edu

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AndreiCimpian

Phone: +1-212-998-3551


Sophie Arnold

Graduate Student

Email: sophie.arnold@nyu.edu

Sophie graduated from the University of Chicago in 2018 with degrees in Psychology and Economics before working as the Yale Social Cognitive Development Lab manager from 2018-2020. She is primarily interested in understanding the reasons behind the development of behaviors and preferences that lead to societal gender disparities like the wage gap. She is also interested in questions at the intersection of moral reasoning and group membership. Outside of the lab, Sophie enjoys playing cards, reading fiction and hiking.

Mark Bowker

Dr. Mark Bowker

Visiting Scholar

PhD, University of St. Andrews

Email: markalanbowker@gmail.com

Mark is a philosopher by training, working on issues at the intersection of philosophy of mind/language and psychology. He is particularly interested in the connection between language, stereotypes, and prejudice, as well as the relation between philosophical and psychological descriptions of mind and language.


Natalie Hutchins

Lab Coordinator

Email: natalie.hutchins@nyu.edu

Natalie is a 2020 graduate from Franklin & Marshall College with a degree in psychology. Her prior research interests focused on differences in social learning and attention between typically developing children and children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Natalie hopes to learn more about gender stereotyping across development in her time at CDL. In her free time, Natalie enjoys playing board games, reading, and being outside.


Mert Kobaş

Graduate Student

Email: mk7922@nyu.edu

Mert graduated from Boğaziçi University with a Bachelor's degree in Guidance and Psychological Counseling and from Koç University with a Master’s degree in Developmental Psychology. He is interested in the role of explanation in adults' and children’s thinking. Outside of the lab, Mert enjoys making music, playing video games, and reading.


Dr. Bethany Lassetter

Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD, University of Toronto

Email: bethany.lassetter@nyu.edu

Bethany examines how motivations and beliefs shape social judgment. In one line of research, she studies how goal relevance guides social perception and emotion. She also examines how beliefs about who can versus cannot change shape social perception and how major political events influence fundamental affective processes. In the Cognitive Development Lab, she is studying the social cognitive development and consequences of gender stereotypes about talent versus effort.

CDL website pic.jpg

Rachel Leshin

Graduate Student

Email: rachel.leshin@nyu.edu

Rachel graduated from Northwestern in 2015 with degrees in psychology and gender studies, and served as CDL's lab manager from 2016-2018. Rachel is primarily interested in the development of social bias and stereotyping. In CDL, her focus is on the developmental roots of gender disparities in political leadership. Outside of the lab, Rachel enjoys cooking (and eating), seeing shows, and capitalizing on NYU student discounts throughout the city.

(Primary advisor: Marjorie Rhodes)


Vivian Liu

Graduate Student

Email: vl845@nyu.edu

Vivian graduated from Wesleyan University with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology. She is interested in the overlap of different social identities in children and adults, the development of essentialist thought, as well as practical applications of strategies to reduce stereotyping and bias. Outside of lab, Vivian loves to bake desserts, eat desserts, and read fiction. 

Aashna Website Photo.jpeg

Aashna Poddar

Graduate Student

Email: aashna.poddar@nyu.edu

Aashna graduated from Singapore Management University with a Bachelor's degree in Marketing and Psychology and from the Harvard Graduate School of Education with a Master’s degree in Human Development and Psychology. She is interested in understanding how gender stereotypes and status differences affect the development of children’s academic and career interests. She is also interested in cultural socialization and intersectionality. Outside of the lab, Aashna enjoys reading, experimenting with cooking, and running.

Headshot 2.png

Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD, Duke University

Email: adam.stanaland@nyu.edu

Adam joins the Cognitive Development having just graduated from Duke University with a joint-PhD in psychology and public policy. His research centers around three main topics: (1) the origins of rigid social category norms, (2) how these norms affect intra- and interpersonal processes, and (3) the feasibility of shifting these norms and stereotypes to improve outcomes. To study these topics, he explore the origins of rigid masculinity norms, how they affect boys and men across diverse social & cultural contexts, and how to shift rigid masculinity norms to improve male psychology and behavior.


Natalie Toomajian

Lab Coordinator

Email: nt2190@nyu.edu

Natalie is a 2019 graduate from the University of Michigan with a degree in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. She's excited to work at CDL as lab coordinator and continue exploring the complexity of children's development through the lab's research. Her past research focuses include children's understanding of consciousness and conceptualization of Theory of Mind in non-human subjects. Natalie hopes to broaden her understanding of children's self-perceptions and how they impact motivation in school and social behavior. Outside the lab, Natalie enjoys reading, writing, and watching movies.


Dr. Siqi Zhao

Visiting Scholar

PhD, Nanyang Technological University

Email: SZHAO009@e.ntu.edu.sg

Siqi obtained her Ph.D. in psychology at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Siqi’s research is motivated by the entrenched gender and racial/ethnic disparities in career attainment observed in many countries. Her research interest lies in understanding the psychological mechanisms underlying early gender and racial/ethnic achievement disparities, such as stereotypes, as well as the environmental factors that shape the development of these mechanisms. Outside the lab, Siqi enjoys reading fiction, watching esports, and doing ballet.

Former members

Lab Alumni


Dr. Eliana Avitzour

Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2021-2022)



Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2020-2022)

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of New Hampshire


Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2016-2019)

Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Psychology, University of Georgia


Former PhD Student (graduated 2017)

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, The University of Chicago


Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2021)

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Amsterdam


Dr. Eleanor (Ellie) Chestnut

Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2017-2018)

Research Scientist, Amazon

Jessica Gladstone

Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2019-2021)

Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Psychology, University of Illinois


Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2015-2016)

Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor), School of Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand


Former PhD Student (graduated 2017)

Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Psychology, School of Philosophy, Psychology & Language Sciences, University of Edinburgh


Dr. Larisa Hussak

Former PhD Student (graduated 2017)

Director, Financial Services Research, Gartner


Jilana Jaxon

Former PhD Student (2017-2019)

Psychotherapist, PeaceTree Counseling and Consulting

Jillian Lauer

Dr. Jillian Lauer

Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2019-2023)

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge


Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2017-2019)

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Haverford College


Former PhD Student (graduated 2022)

Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Psychology, Stanford University


Dr. Erika Salomon

Former PhD Student (graduated 2016)

Senior Data Scientist, Shopify


Former PhD Student (graduated 2018)

Teaching Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Denver


Dr. Shelbie Sutherland

Former PhD Student (graduated 2016)

Senior Strategist, BEworks (Toronto)


Molly Tallberg

Former Lab Coordinator (2018-2020)

PhD student, The University of Chicago


Dr. Christina Tworek

Former PhD Student (graduated 2017)

Director, Survey Methodology & Advanced Analytics, Gerson Lehrman Group, Inc.


Dr. Jussi Valtonen

Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2017-2019)

Researcher, Department of Psychology and Logopedics, University of Helsinki, Finland


Former Postdoctoral Fellow (2018-2020)

Assistant Professor of Psychology, New York University Abu Dhabi

bottom of page