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2016 Northern Lights Psychology Conference Announcement & Call for Papers/Posters
Hosted by The Department of Psychology at the University of North Dakota
Date: Saturday, October 22.
Location: University of North Dakota
Submission Deadline: October 8th, 2016 (midnight)
So you want to live to 100, really? Insights from Danish longitudinal research
Matt McGue, Ph.D
Professor of Psychology
Center for Neurobehavioral Development, University of Minnesota
Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Biodemography, University of Southern Denmark
ABSTRACT: One of the 20th century’s greatest medical achievements was the massive increase in life expectancy that occurred throughout the developed world. Understanding the implications of this increase has played a central role in modern gerontology: Can we expect further increases in life expectancy in the 21st century or have we reached the limit of human longevity? To what extent can lifestyle modifications and psychological interventions increase the length of our lives? Do genetic factors constrain how long any individual can expect to live? Moreover, although the increase in life expectancy is generally hailed as being beneficial, it has also raised a concern that reductions in mortality have been accompanied by an expansion of morbidity, that the achievement of a very long life has come at the expense of the quality of that life.
For the past 25 years, the speaker has been involved in a series of longitudinal studies in Denmark. These studies have involved national samples of twins as well as non-twin birth cohorts with the overall aim of understanding the nature, causes and consequences of the normative changes that accompany aging. In this talk he will highlight how findings from these studies are helping us understand the implications of the graying of the developed world with a particular focus on the nature of psychological and cognitive aging.
- Understand the implications of increases in life expectancy for the physical and mental health of populations in western countries
- Understand how cohort differences have affected physical, psychological and cognitive health in late life
- Understand the challenges of drawing causal inferences in observational studies and how innovative research designs seek to meet those challenges
- Understand the debate about the existence of a biological limit to human longevity and the implications of recent epigenetic research for this debate
Biography: Dr. Matt McGue is internationally renowned in the fields of behavioral and epidemiological genetics and is considered to be the world leader in the application of sophisticated behavior genetic methods to address critical questions about why humans differ in significant psychological characteristics such as personality, intelligence, and psychopathology. His earlier work demonstrated the link between schizophrenia and multiple genes and recently he has used innovative research designs and landmark longitudinal studies to understand human behavioral development. These studies were the basis for the development of a very influential model that shows how individual risk and family rearing practices contribute to the development of addiction (Twin and Adoption Studies of Adolescent Development), how genetic and experiential factors contribute to longevity and mental health in old age (Twin Studies of Old Age), and how inherited factors influence the development of differences in many adult behaviors. Professor McGue's research contributions to his field have been significant. He is described as an outstanding teacher and mentor. His course in behavior genetics is among the highest rated psychology courses and his behavior genetic statistical analysis of twin, family, and longitudinal data is considered the primary vehicle for graduate students to learn these methods. He served as the director of the Behavior Genetics and Individual Differences Program for ten years, and as associate department chair and then department chair. He is the recipient of several awards, including the Research Scientist Development Award from the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), Scholar of the College (CLA), and the James Shields Award (Behavior Genetics Association), to name a few. In addition, he has served on national and international committees including, the NIAAA National Advising Committee; he served as chair of the NIH Behavior Genetics & Epidemiology study section; and as Treasurer and President of the Behavior Genetics Association.
Submission Info: Students, faculty, and institutional researchers are encouraged to submit papers and posters of their recent research for this year's conference. The conference program will be published online October 15th at http://arts-sciences.und.edu/psychology/northern_lights/schedule.cfm.
Please submit the required information outlined below in an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Registration is free for all students attending the conference. All others are required to pay the registration fee of $10 (US) which can be paid in advance or during check-in at the registration desk.
First and Last names of authors (Please list presenter first):
Title of presentation:
Abstract (150 words or less):
Preference for presentation time: AM, PM, or either:
Preference for presentation type: poster, oral, or either type:
Please include your name, e-mail, and phone number in all correspondence.
Example of submission (please following this format):
Kimberly Nielsen, Heather Terrell, Douglas Peters, & Joseph Vacek
University of North Dakota
Expert Witnesses, Judicial Instructions, and Eyewitness Testimony
Approximately 70 percent of the first 150 people exonerated by DNA evidence were mistakenly identified by an eyewitness. The goal of this study was to investigate whether a combination of judicial instructions and expert testimony would better prepare the jury to critically evaluate eyewitness testimony. The first independent variable was expert testimony--the presence vs. absence of testimony. The second independent variable was the presence and timing of judicial instructions--judicial instructions were not included vs. included at the beginning of the trial vs. included at the end of the trial. The dependent variable was whether the participants found the defendant guilty vs. not guilty, as well as how confident they were in their decision. No significant main effects or interactions were detected. In other words, neither the inclusion of expert testimony nor the inclusion of judicial instructions served to diminish the impact of eyewitness testimony.
Preference time: either
Preference for presentation type: poster