Faculty and Staff

General contact


Sharon Akimoto
Sharon Akimoto Profile
Professor of Psychology
Chair of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015:  TBA and by appointment

Sharon Akimoto (Ph.D, University of Utah) teaches courses in social cognition, social behavior and interpersonal processes, the psychology of prejudice, American and Asian-American studies. Her research interests include the formation and perpetuation of social stereotypes, cross-cultural understanding/misunderstanding and well-being, and Asian-American psychology.

Ken Abrams (profile)
Ken Abrams Profile
Associate Professor of Psychology
Off Campus: Fall 2015

Office Hours: Fall 2015- Off campus

Ken Abrams (B.A., Dartmouth College; Ph.D., University of Minnesota) teaches courses in health psychology, psychopathology, and statistics, and a seminar on science and pseudoscience. His research program explores the co-occurrence of substance use and anxiety disorders. Currently, he is investigating whether nicotine withdrawal is associated with carbon-dioxide hypersensitivity and hence a higher risk for experiencing panic attacks. Other recent research of his has examined treatments for pathological gambling and the self-medication of social anxiety and panic attacks with alcohol.

Steven Kozberg
Steven Kozberg Profile
Senior Lecturer in Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015: Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:00-10:00 am and by appointment

Steven Kozberg (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) teaches courses in psychopathology, counseling psychology, and child and adolescent psychiatry. His clinical interests include stress, depression, adult ADHD, health psychology, psychotherapy, and clinical supervision. In addition, he is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Minnesota Medical School and has a private practice in Minneapolis.

Neil Lutsky Profile
Neil Lutsky Profile
William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015:  IDSC100 - Tuesdays 8:30 - 9:30 am, PSYC110.01 Thursdays 1:00 - 11:00 am and by appointment

Neil Lutsky, (Ph.D., Harvard University) teaches courses in social psychology, social cognition, personality, general psychology, positive psychology, and quantitative reasoning. He is a former president of the Society for the Teaching of Psychology (Division 2 of the American Psychological Association) and the 2001 recipient of the Walter D. Mink Undergraduate Teacher Award given by the Minnesota Psychological Association and the 2011 recipient of the Charles L. Brewer Distinguished Teaching of Psychology Award given by the American Psychological Foundation. He directed a 2004-2008 Department of Education FIPSE grant to Carleton on "Quantitative Inquiry, Reasoning, and Knowledge," and has served on the Board of Directors of the National Numeracy Network. His professional interests include the teaching of psychology, quantitative reasoning, the social psychology of obedience to authority, psychology and the Holocaust, and the study of therapy, relationship, and other life endings. Lutsky has recently served as a visiting faculty member at Ashoka University in India and at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad in Copenhagen

Sarah Meerts (profile)
Sarah Meerts Profile
Assistant Professor of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015:  Mondays & Thursdays 10:00 - 11:00 am and by appointment

Sarah Meerts (B.A., Vassar College, Ph.D., Dartmouth College) teaches courses in behavioral neuroscience, hormones and behavior and the neurobiology of motivated behaviors like sexual behavior and parenting.  Sarah’s research focuses on the hormonal and neural mechanisms that mediate sexual motivation and reward.  Her research uses behavioral techniques and immunocytochemistry to better understand female rat sexual behavior and the neuroendocrine changes that occur during puberty to facilitate adult sexual behavior.

Julie Neiworth, Professor of Psychology and Director of Neuroscience
Julie Neiworth Profile
Professor of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015: Mondays 1:00 - 2:00 & Fridays 11:00am - Noon & by appointment -- please contact Julie by email and she can set up anything for you!

Julie Neiworth, (B.A., Psychology, Reed College; M.A., Ph.D., Experimental Psychology, Michigan State University; postdoctoral fellow, neurobiology, U of TX Medical Center) has studied animal cognition, the evolution of the mind, cognitive neuroscience, and animal and human learning since 1988-89, her first year at Carleton. Neiworth received the Walter D. Mink Outstanding Undergraduate Teacher Award in 2010 from the Minnesota Psychological Association (MPA). She was elected an APA (American Psychological Association) Fellow in 2009, an APS Fellow in 2013, and a full member of the Psychonomic Society in 2013.  Julie received an award from APA in 2007 for the best published paper in comparative and physiological psychology. She was selected Distinguished Scholar in 2004 by the MPA. She was Chair of the psychology department for 6 years (1995-2001) and was director of the neuroscience concentration for 5 years (2007-2010, 2012-2014). Her work has been supported by HHMI, NSF, and NIH, and her tamarin research is currently supported by NIH grant 1R15HD072571 - 01 (2012-2016). She has published over 20 articles with Carleton students as co-authors. Julie is also on the board of consulting editors for the Journal of Comparative Psychology.

Julia Feld, Cognitive Psychologist
Julia Strand Profile
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Off Campus: Fall 2015

Office Hours - Fall 2015: On sabbatical

Julia Strand (B.A., Tufts University; PhD., Washington University in St. Louis) teaches courses including Introduction to Psychology, the Psychology of Spoken Words, and Sensation & Perception. Her research focuses on how humans are able to turn sensory information about speech into meaningful representations. Topics of research include how cognitive abilities influence language perception, what traits of words promote easy recognition, how word recognition abilities change with age, and how visual information (seeing the talker) influences language processing.

Mija Van Der Wege
Mija Van Der Wege Profile
Associate Professor of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015 -By appointment

Mija Van Der Wege (B.A., Cognitive Science, Wellesley College; M.S.,  Statistics, Ph.D., Psychology, Stanford University) teaches courses on introductory psychology, measurement and data analysis, psychology of language, human memory, and seminars on language and deception, the psychology of numbers, and psychology, technology, and design.  She also currently serves as the director of the QuIRK (Quantitative Inquiry, Reasoning, and Knowledge) program at Carleton and promotes quantitative reasoning education on campus and nationally.  Mija's research interests focus around how people use language and memory in day-to-day life. One major area of research looks at how people make use of information about their conversational partners when they are having a conversation, for example, how conversational partners briefly and spontaneously create agreements on what words mean. Another area is how readers learn new information and change their existing beliefs based on what they read in fictional sources.

Larry Wichlinski
Lawrence Wichlinski Profile
Associate Professor of Psychology
Off Campus: Fall 2015

Office Hours - Fall 2015 - On sabbatical

Larry Wichlinski (Ph.D, Southern Illinois University) teaches courses in behavioral neuroscience, psychopharmacology and sleep and dreaming. His research interests include the pharmacology of memory and anxiety, the behavioral and neurochemical effects of drug abuse, and sleep and dreaming.

Stefanie Simon Profile
Robert A. Oden, Jr. Postdoctoral Fellow for Innovation in the Liberal Arts

Office Hours - Fall 2015: Thursdays 11:00am - Noon and by appointment

Stefanie Simon (B.A., University of Richmond; Ph.D., Tulane University) teaches courses in social psychology, including courses on gender and prejudice. Stefanie's research program centers around the psychology of diversity. Focusing on gender and race, her research examines what actions people can take to reduce prejudice and improve intergroup relations.  Stefanie's recent research focuses on how gender and race intersect to influence discrimination-claiming behavior in the context of leadership. 

Adam Putnam Profile
Visiting Assistant Professor of Psychology

Office Hours - Fall 2015: Mondays 11:00 - 12:00, Wednesdays 3:00 - 4:00 and by appointment

Adam Putnam (B.A. Earlham College; Ph.D. Washington University in St. Louis) teaches courses in introductory psychology, memory processes, and applying cognitive psychology to education. Adam’s research explores human memory, with a focus on questions that have real world applications, such as how memory science can be used to improve education, how false memories are formed, and how people remember political information. Adam conducts research projects both in the lab and online.

Heather Scherschel Profile
Visiting Instructor in Psychology

Office Hours - Fall '15: Mondays 4:45-5:45pm, Tuesdays 5-6pm, and by appointment

Heather Scherschel (B.A., Psychology, Indiana University; ABD University of Minnesota) teaches a course in health psychology and has previously taught courses in introductory psychology, social psychology, and the psychology of self-regulation. Heather’s research interests focus on the self-regulation of eating behaviors. In particular, her work examines how small changes in one’s environment can affect dietary choices. Currently, she is finishing her dissertation, which is examining the role of comfort foods both before and after social rejection. 


Pamela Groves-Gaggioli
Pamela Groves-Gaggioli Profile
Administrative Assistant in Psychology and Cognitive Science

Pam’s experiences are varied having begun her career as a third grade teacher, then moving into a twenty-seven year career as Coordinator of Children and Teen Services at the Pasadena Public Library in Pasadena, CA.  While there, she instituted significant programs for preschoolers through teens, wrote grants, conducted workshops for staff, teachers and parents, and supervised numerous employees.  She was awarded the Distinguished Service Award for outstanding service to the families of Pasadena School District and the Marge Wyatt Advocacy Award for outstanding service to the child-care community.  She retired from that position in December 2009, but didn’t stay retired long and was most recently employed as the Administrative Assistant in the Health Center at Shattuck-St. Mary’s School.  She received her BS in Elementary Education and Psychology from UW-Eau Claire and her Masters in Library and Information Management from USC.   

Sophie Guterl ’15
Educational Associate Meerts Grant
Educational Associate in Psychology
Juli Baynes
Juli Baynes
Animal Care Supervisor

Juli Baynes joined the Psychology Dept in 2012 to care for our animals (the rats, pigeons, and cotton top tamarins) and to manage the facility and run our federally regulated training programs for students and staff handling and studying animals. Juli is a certified veterinary technician who has assisted veterinary clinics in the area for about 20 years. She has also taught puppy socialization classes and teaches a dog obedience class for 4-H kids to work with their pets.  Juli enjoys biking, camping, hiking, and spends quality time with her family and a fairly large menagerie of pets.

Marie Balaban, Visiting Professor of Psychology
Marie Balaban
Research Associate

Marie Balaban completed her Ph.D. in 1989 in Human Psychophysiology with an emphasis in Developmental Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She held faculty positions in Psychology Departments at Harvard University (1989-1994) and The Johns Hopkins University (1994-1997) before moving west to Eastern Oregon University in 1998. There, she teaches classes in child development, cognitive psychology, emotion, research methods/statistics, writing in psychology, and the senior capstone research courses. Her current research interests are in the psychology of emotion, and in children's category/concept learning and theory of mind. She is visiting Carleton College during her research sabbatical to collaborate with Julie Neiworth on comparative studies related to theory of mind development in human children and in cotton-top tamarins.

Susan Marino
Susan Marino
Research Associate
Clark Ohnesorge
Research Associate
Adam Johnson Profile
Research Associate

Adam Johnson (B.A., University of Richmond; M.A., New York University; Ph.D., City University of New York) teaches courses on interpersonal relationships, personality psychology, and political psychology. Adam’s research focuses on the psychological motives driving political polarization as well as the interpersonal and social network foundations of people’s political beliefs. His methods include both traditional social psychological research as well as online studies using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk.

Other Faculty Involved in Psychology

Kathie Galotti
Kathleen Galotti Profile
Director of Cognitive Science
William H. Laird Professor of Cognitive Science

Office Hours - Fall 2015: TBA and by appointment

Kathie teaches courses in cognitive and developmental psychology as well as introductory cognitive science. She has also taught introductory psychology and statistics in the Psychology Department for many years. She helped establish the Cognitive Science concentration at Carleton and serves as its director. She is the author of Cognitive Psychology In and Out of the Laboratory, and Cognitive Development:  Infancy Through Adolescence, both textbooks, as well as Making Decisions in Everyday Life, a trade book, and over two dozen journal articles. Her research, focusing on reasoning and decision making and the development of these skills, has been supported by the National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Spencer Foundation.