Faculty Spotlight: Jennifer Quinn

Research Engagement

“My favorite thing is when I get students who are bright, talented, and motivated and I can engage them in research,” said Dr. Quinn. “Seeing them be successful is very motivating and makes me want to keep working with students.”

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology

Dr. Jennifer QuinnDr. Jennifer Quinn is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology who shares her passion for behavioral neuroscience with students and the broader community. Dr. Quinn completed her undergraduate studies in psychology in the behavioral neuroscience track at the University of Scranton. She then went on to receive her PhD at UCLA and completed a post doctoral fellowship at Yale University before arriving at Miami University in the fall of 2008.

“I actually started out as an undergraduate wanting to do clinical psychology because that was the majority of what I knew about psychology at that point,” said Dr. Quinn. “Then I started working in a behavioral neuroscience lab and got my hands on research. I knew that was the direction I wanted to go so I wound up switching gears in my junior year and going the biopsychology route instead.”

Dr. Quinn has always had a passion for being involved in outreach with regard to neuroscience. As an undergraduate, she would go out to the local schools and talk to kids of all ages about various aspects of neuroscience. Her commitment continued as she pursued her degree at UCLA and when she came to Miami she was able to start up her own avenues of outreach.

She started the Miami chapter of NuRhoPsi, the National Honors Society in neuroscience, which has allowed her to interact with Miami undergraduate and graduate students as well as faculty. The organization plans all kinds of outreach including brain awareness week activities and Science Week each spring with the 1st to 5th graders in the Talawanda School District.

“That’s been a real joy and it gives you a whole different perspective. It reminds you that it’s important that we are able to do our research but also to communicate it at all levels,” said Dr. Quinn. “I didn’t even learn about neuroscience until I got to college. Now they’re hearing about it in high school, middle school, and even elementary school thanks to programs such as Science Week.”

Dr. Quinn teaches most of the classes in the biopsychology sequence in psychology. She also co-created the Broadening Undergraduate Research Participation in Behavior Neuroscience (BURP-BN) program. BURP-BN is an intensive one-year program for juniors and seniors at Miami who have yet to have the opportunity to engage in research. The program is now in its 3rd year and has 24 students currently participating.

“These students are at risk of leaving college with a large void in their Miami experience. Even though their academic records are very strong, research is such a core component of psychology in general,” said Quinn. “We get majors from across divisions getting into BURP-BN because it’s so interdisciplinary. It gives students from all different majors an opportunity to get engaged in neuroscience research.”

Undergraduate and graduate students have the ability to interact and collaborate as they work in the lab using a basic research approach. Because the BURP-BN program is so intensive, a lot of progress is made in a short amount of time. Dr. Quinn notes that it’s very rewarding to see her student’s growth.

“My favorite thing is when I get students who are bright, talented, and motivated and I can engage them in research,” said Dr. Quinn. “Seeing them be successful is very motivating and makes me want to keep working with students.”

Research Engagement

“My favorite thing is when I get students who are bright, talented, and motivated and I can engage them in research,” said Dr. Quinn. “Seeing them be successful is very motivating and makes me want to keep working with students.”

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    Psychology Building

    Department of Psychology

    The Department of Psychology blends a foundation in the major areas of psychology with other disciplines in the liberal arts to give you a broad range of skills, knowledge, and experiences. In our department, there are many opportunities to get involved with research, teaching, and community service. Both a BA and PhD are offered.

    90 North Patterson Avenue
    Oxford, OH 45056
    513-529-2400
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    psychology@MiamiOH.edu

    Joe Johnson, Chair