Postdoctoral Fellows

Leanne Beaudoin Ryan, Ph.D. 2014-2016
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Leanne Beaudoin-Ryan is the Associate Director of Research at the Erikson Institute. Dr. Beaudoin-Ryan earned her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology, as well as a Master’s degree in Social Science, from the University of Chicago. Broadly speaking, her research focuses on how communication can be used to optimize children’s learning. She has pursued this interest using multiple levels of analysis. Her dissertation examined how children’s spontaneously produced gestures can be used as a cognitive tool for developing the perspective-taking skills that undergird moral reasoning.

Aubry Alvarez, Ph.D. 2013-2014
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As a content designer at PBS, Aubry Alvarez develops curriculum frameworks and supplemental educational materials for early learners, as well as students and teachers in grades K-12. In this role, Dr. Alvarez leads teams of subject matter experts, professional writers, and production teams to examine existing products and to create exciting new products. She also conducts research to provide insights for future projects. She lives in the Washington, D.C. area with her family, and loves staying up to date on all things related to developmental psychology and children’s media!

Doctoral Graduates

Drew Cingel, Ph.D.
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Drew Cingel is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of California, Davis. His areas of research include adolescent-peer relationships, and peer influence, on social networking sites, children’s learning from tablet computers, and the impact of television on children’s moral reasoning.

Courtney K. Blackwell, Ph.D. 
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Courtney Blackwell is a Research and Evaluation Associate at Outlier Research & Evaluation at the University of Chicago. She is currently working on the STEM School Study, a four-year NSF-funded project investigating inclusive STEM high schools across the United States. This study seeks to provide insight into the essential components of STEM schools, what factors affect the implementation of these components, and how these components are associated with student achievement. Additionally, she is working on the Evaluation Study to evaluate how K-12 teachers implement computer science curricular materials and how this implementation is associated with teacher and student outcomes.

Research Coordinator

Megan Olsen, B.A. 2015-2016

Research Assistants

Megan Olsen, B.A. 2014-2015

Eric Morales, B.A. 2014-2016

Bri Hightower, B.A. 2013-2014

Colette Ghunim, B.A. 2014

Ariel Maschke, B.S. 2012-2013

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