Student Spotlight November 2022

    Megan Norris is a doctoral candidate studying Experimental Psychology and is anticipated to graduate in the Spring of 2023.




    Q: What is your educational background?
    A: I graduated from North Greenville University in Greenville, South Carolina with a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2016. I then went to Appalachian State University in Boone, North Caroline for a Master of Arts in Experimental Psychology. While there, I worked with Dr. Robyn Kondrad on my master’s thesis exploring whether children extend stereotypes about groups’ epistemic and social traits. After graduating from ASU in 2018, I was accepted to the Experimental Psychology PhD program at the University of Louisville working with Dr. Nick Noles and plan to graduate in May 2023.


    Q: What is your specific area of research and why does it interest you?

    A: I do research on children’s social cognitive development and love to learn about how children think and learn about the world around them. I specifically research how children think about people who hold social power and their beliefs about who can hold positions of power. Learning how children think about different concepts can help explain how and why adults hold certain beliefs. I am interested in children’s beliefs about others because I think it is important to learn where developmentally people’s biases and prejudices emerge and how to best encourage more equitable thinking.


    Q: What are your long-term goals or aspirations?

    A: I would like to have a career as a psychology professor at an R1 university continuing to conduct research on how children think about social inequality and teaching undergraduate students using tenants of inclusive teaching.


    Q: What has been your favorite part of the graduate school experience at UofL?

    A: I have enjoyed the relationships I have made in my program. I have made supportive friendships and lifelong collaborators during my time in graduate school. I have also enjoyed creating programs with a colleague promoting the use of inclusive teaching strategies and providing professional development programming for undergraduate research assistants. Seeing where these programs have taken us has been incredibly rewarding.


    Awards, honors, publications:

    • APA Dissertation Award


    Fun Facts:


    A talent you have always wanted: I really love cartooning and animation and wish that I could draw and create digital art or short animations.


    Favorite book: Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte


    Favorite quote: “All that is gold does not glitter. Not all those who wander are lost; the old that is strong does not wither. Deep roots are not reached by the frost.” – J.R.R Tolkein


    Role model: My parents did an excellent job teaching me how to be a determined, resilient, and kind person.


    Favorite vacation destination: Hilton Head Island, SC


    If you weren’t in graduate school, what would you be doing now?
    I think I would be working as a high school teacher and maybe coaching high school sports.