Lab Members

Pamela Davis-Kean : Professor of Psychology

Pamela Davis-Kean

Professor of Psychology

Dr.  Davis-Kean's research continues to evolve as she seeks the various pathways that socio-economic status (SES) of parents relates to the outcomes of their children. Davis-Kean’s primary focus is on parental educational attainment and how it can influence the development of the home environment throughout childhood, adolescence, and the transition to adulthood. Achievement is the primary outcome that she studies and she is an expert in the use of standardized test with children as well as using any type of assessment with young children.

Dr.  Davis-Kean research continues to evolve as she seeks the various pathways that the socio-economic status (SES) of parents relates to the outcomes of their children. Davis-Kean’s primary focus is on parental educational attainment and how it can influence the development of the home environment throughout childhood, adolescence, and the transition to adulthood. Achievement is the primary outcome that she studies (math achievement in particular) and she is an expert in the use of standardized test with children as well as using any type of assessment with young children.

Davis-Kean is the director of the Population, Neurodevelopment, and Genetics program at the Institute for Social Research. This group examines the complex transactions of brain, biology, and behavior as children and families develop across time. She is interested in both micro (brain and biology) and macro (family and socioeconomic conditions) aspects of development to understand the full developmental story of individuals.  Her primary focus in this area is how stress as relates to family socioeconomic status translates to parenting beliefs and behaviors that influence the development of children.

Google Scholar, Research Gate 

pdakean@umich.edu
Sammy Ahmed : Doctoral Student

Sammy Ahmed

Doctoral Student

Sammy Ahmed received his B.S. in Applied Psychology from New York University. He is currently a doctoral candidate in the developmental area, and a NICHD fellow in interdisciplinary science. His research focuses on the genetic, contextual and environmental predictors of neuro-cognitive development and academic achievement in young children. Sammy’s research integrates theory and methods from Genetics, Neuroscience, Psychology and Education to study and understand the nature and sources of cognitive development.

sammyfa@umich.edu
Alexa Ellis : Graduate Student

Alexa Ellis

Graduate Student

Alexa received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in French from the University of Michigan as well as her M.A. through the Accelerated Master's Degree Program in developmental psychology at the University of Michigan. Currently, she is a graduate student in the Combined Program in Education and Psychology. Her research interests include understanding the different factors that impact mathematical achievement and the cognitive processes behind mathematical development.

algrel@umich.edu
Lauren Tighe : Doctoral Student

Lauren Tighe

Doctoral Student

Lauren received her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Michigan. Currently, she is a graduate student in the joint social work and developmental psychology doctoral progrma. Her research focuses on various predictors of academic achievement from elementary to high school, particularly in disadvantaged areas. Currently, she is investigating the influence of high parental education (bachelor's degree or higher) on children whose families live in poverty. In the future, she hopes to study environmental and school factors that influence achievement.

tighelau@umich.edu
Nicholas Waters : Graduate Student

Nicholas Waters

Graduate Student

Nick received his B.A. in Psychology from the University of Michigan. Currently he is a first year doctoral student in the Developmental Psychology program. He is primarily interested in using a risk and resilience framework to identify risk and protective factors that can then be utilized to inform policy practices. More specifically, he would like to investigate the role of biological and environmental influences in moderating the effects of adversity on academic and socioemotional outcomes.

nickwat@umich.edu