Department of Psychology
Department of Psychology

Department of Psychology Graduate Awards



Each year, the Department of Psychology calls for nominations for our Janet T. Spence Outstanding Teaching Assistant (TA), Outstanding Assistant Instructor (AI) and Outstanding Dissertation Awards. These annual awards honor outstanding graduate students in the Department of Psychology. Recipients are honored at our annual awards reception and receive a $500 award. Please see more information about the individual awards below. 


Janet T. Spence Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award

Each year the Psychology Department calls for nominations for outstanding performance by a graduate student teaching assistant. Award winners will be chosen by the Department of Psychology Fellowship and Awards Committee. The recipient will be recognized at the annual Departmental awards reception and will receive a $500 award. 

Dr. Janet T. Spence was a major figure in American psychology. She was a faculty member of our department from 1967 to 1997 and served as chair from 1969 to 1972. She retired from UT after the Spring 1997 semester. A 1949 Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, Dr. Spence's early work made seminal contributions to theories of the influence of anxiety on learning and performance, as well as the study of the effects of material incentives on intrinsic motivation. 

Eligibility

Psychology graduate students who have held a Teaching Assistant position in the last academic year.  

Nominations

Nominations must be initiated by a faculty member and sent to the Graduate Program Coordinator. The nomination form and the CIS summary page for the TA semester are required. The nomination form consists of a series of questions regarding the student’s performance. Nominations are typically requested in January.  

2017 Recipients

Kelly E. Asao
Evan M. Stein

2016 Recipients

Carey S. Pulverman
Nicole J. Wen

2015 Recipients

Daniel Conroy-Beam
Jason D. Ferrell

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Janet T. Spence Outstanding Assistant Instructor Award

Each year the Department of Psychology calls for nominations for the Janet T. Spence Outstanding Assistant Instructor (AI). Award winners will be chosen by the Department of Psychology Fellowship and Awards Committee. The recipient will be recognized at the annual Departmental awards reception and will receive a $500 award.  

Dr. Janet T. Spence was a major figure in American psychology. She was a faculty member of our department from 1967 to 1997 and served as Chair from 1969 to 1972. She retired from UT after the Spring 1997 semester. A 1949 Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, Dr. Spence's early work made seminal contributions to theories of the influence of anxiety on learning and performance, as well as the study of the effects of material incentives on intrinsic motivation.

Eligibility

In order to receive an AI position, students must:

  • Successfully complete the PSY 398T Supervised Teaching course;
  • Serve as the teaching assistant for the course they would like to eventually teach; and
  • Serve as the teaching assistant for the PSY 418 course. 

Psychology graduate students who held an AI position are eligible to apply for the AI award. 

Nominations

Nominations must be initiated by the graduate student AI and sent to the Graduate Program Coordinator. The CIS summary page for the AI semester is required. In addition, the AI may submit any additional materials they feel are important for the committee to review. Nominations are typically requested in February.  

2017 Recipient

Kelly E. Asao

2016 Recipient

Stevie S. Schein

2015 Recipient

Brooke J. Miller

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Department of Psychology Outstanding Dissertation Award

Each year the Psychology Department calls for nominations for the outstanding performance by a graduate student teaching assistant. Award winners will be chosen by the Department of Psychology Fellowship and Awards Committee. The recipient will be recognized at the annual Departmental awards reception and will receive a $500 award. 

Eligibility

To be eligible for the 2016 dissertation award, you must meet one of the following requirements: 

  • Have a dissertation submitted in final form to the Graduate School by May 8 for a degree to be awarded in May 2016 (Note: Nominees who do not submit their dissertations by May 8 or who do not complete other degree requirements by this date will be ineligible to receive an award in this year’s competition);
  • Have a dissertation submitted for a degree awarded in August 2015 or December 2015; or
  • Have a dissertation that was submitted after April 1, 2015, for a degree awarded in May 2015.

Nominations

The following materials must be submitted to the Graduate Program Coordinator:

  • A letter from the dissertation supervisor stating why this dissertation was chosen for nomination;
  • A copy of the dissertation (including abstract) in .pdf format.

2017 Recipient

Gabriella M. Harari, "A Window onto the Psychology of Every Day Life: Assessing Student's Daily Behaviors Using Smartphone Sensing Methods"

2016 Recipient

Carolyn E. Jones, "The Social Transmission of Associative Fear in Rats: Mechanisms and Applications of Fear Conditioning by Proxy"

2015 Recipient

Peter C. Clasen, “Elaborative Processing Biases Associated with Vulnerability and Maintenance of Depression: Evidence Across Levels of Analysis”

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