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Child and Family Science
Office: FFS 302
Ph.D., 2014, Psychology, Clark UniversityM.A., 2011, Psychology, Clark UniversityB.A., 2006, Psychology, Miami University
Experience and Research: Jessica bridges developmental and cultural perspectives to examine how people make
sense of themselves across the life course, and the role of culture and cultural change
in sense-making processes. Employing qualitative and quantitative methods, Jessica
has studied the beliefs (about divinity, morality, self) and practices (religious,
linguistic, dietary, media) of adolescents and parents in Thailand, and of children,
adolescents, and adults in the United States. Her ongoing ethnographic fieldwork in
northern Thailand has contributed to the developmental science of globalization, and
her work in the U.S. has contributed to the scientific understanding of the cultural
nature of moral development.
Students in Jessica’s Human Development and Culture Research Lab have published empirical
articles in leading journals in the discipline and have presented the results of their
research internationally, nationally, and locally. HD&C lab members have studied a
range of topics, including: the transformation and maintenance of moral values in
contexts of rapid sociocultural change, adolescent orientations toward religion in
globalizing Northern Thailand, dyadic perspectives of media use in rural and urban
Thailand, and globalization-based cultural brokerage among urban Thai adolescent—parent
dyads. Additional information on the research in which Jessica and her students are
engaged can be found here.