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PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate

Parenting, MRI analysis, fNIRS, substance use, mental health, emotion, statistics

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Perceptions of cannabis use during the pregnancy period

Often people assume substance use is a easy choice, that people have not thought about the effects on them or their families. In recent literature, we have found the opposite. People often really weigh the decision of using cannabis during pregnancy quite heavily and chose to use for personal reasons. This project would explore those reasons for use depending on legalization, and access to other treatment.

Mental health during pregnancy among caregivers

Mental health can be a large obstacle for many to deal with during their life, and pregnancy and becoming a new parent often adds some addition challenges. We could investigate mental health and interventions for all types of caregivers. While there is some research on mental health and pregnancy, little investigates how fathers, secondary caregivers, and other types of caregivers' mental health effects the transition to parenthood, and their new infant.

Caregivers and the transition to parenthood

New research is transitioning away from looking at just traditional maternal and paternal figures in parenthood, and is finding that even non biological parents have the same re-wiring in the brain when given a new child. This project would look at different types of caregivers and the transitions their brain/body makes to prepare them for a new child. This project would focus on helping them make that transition more smoothly (such as what interventions for adoptive parents can speed up this process, or do we even need these interventions? Some research is showing that they are biologically prepared even without them!)

Introduction to Analyzing Statistics

This project could be focused on any larger data set that you want, and we would focus on the beginning steps to learning how to run simple analysis to answer your questions. Large available data sets such as the ABCD data set, have a plethora of data on child to adolescent development.

Coding skills

Matlab; Python; SPSS; R

Interested in working with expert mentors like Shannon?

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