The lexicon lab is always open to hearing from students who want to work in the lab! To know more about our work and current projects, please head over to our research or publications page.
If you are interested in working on any of our current projects, or have a project in mind that aligns with the core questions motivating the lexicon lab, please directly email the PI, Abhilasha Kumar, to set up a meeting time.
We are especially interested in students who have programming experience (web development, game development, and machine learning), statistical skills (knowledge of R/Python), prior research experience (in psychology, neuroscience, linguistics, or computer science), and a strong desire to learn!
On this page, you will find information about our core values as a lab, and what you as a student will learn and contribute to the lab.
Working in the lab
Working in the lexicon lab can involve donning several hats - while students will typically take ownership of one or two projects, we believe in collaborative science. So, one day you might be expected to analyze data for your own study, while another day you could be asked to provide feedback to another student on their upcoming presentation.
In either case, the PI (Abhilasha) will be committed to your growth and success.
You can read Abhilasha's mentoring philosopy here, and find details about the types of students we are looking for, and the types of skills you can hope to gain from working in the lab below:
What are we looking for?
Our work involves studying the human mind using complex tools and methods.
Therefore, in addition to intellectual curiosity and a strong work ethic, we hope that students bring a certain set of skills and knowledge to their work in the lab:
Some knowledge of working with data and at least basic knowledge of statistical inference
Be open to learning how to design and program web-based experiments
Be organized and have strong communication skills
Be open to learning as you go, and committed to showing up to meetings, communicating clearly, and voicing concerns early and openly
What will you learn?
Conducting scientific research goes hand-in-hand with learning new skills and information!
Working in the lexicon lab will expose you to a wide range of modern methods and techniques used in cognitive science.
Although the specific skills you acquire will vary based on your project and research interests, all members of the lab will be trained in a few core research skills:
You will learn the nitty gritty of experimental research methods, which includes conceptualizing a research question, developing materials, designing an experiment, and conducting studies with human participants
You will also learn how to examine, analyze, and describe data as well as make statistical inferences about human behavior. Given that our lab is committed to open science practices, you will learn statistical computing in R, and also learn how to maintain reproducibile workflows
You will also have the experience of working in a collaborative environment and learn how to communicate within teams
Finally, you will learn how to communicate scientific findings, by presenting your work at university-level symposia and events, as well as national and international conferences.
Our lab regularly attends Annual Meetings of the Cognitive Science Society and Psychonomic Society and students will be encouraged to submit and present their work at these conferences.
As a group, we are not only committed to the study of the human mind, but also to developing a community of honest, compassionate, and curious thinkers, who are guided by some shared values.
Kindness and camraderie
Teamwork is a cornerstone of impactful science and we believe that the best kind of teams are made of people who are kind to each other and enjoy each other's company.
Our goal is to create a culture where different perspectives are heard and valued, and everyone is committed to answering the questions we ask to the best of their abilities.
In our lab, project work often involves multiple lab members working together, refining research questions, brainstorming solutions, and providing feedback on research designs, posters, presentations, and scientific writing.
We check-in regularly with all members, through weekly meetings as well as informal chats and social events.
We also prioritize a healthy work-life balance and hope to develop a supportive community where we can openly discuss and navigate personal and professional challenges.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion
Our lab is committed to recruiting, supporting, and working with a diverse group of researchers and participants.
We understand and acknowledge that some communities and identities are underrepresented in cognitive science, and strive to do our best to make the field more diverse and equitable.
To that end, we not only actively recruit students and researchers from underrepresented groups, but also provide a supportive and safe environment for them to thrive and excel in.
We also dedicate lab meeting time to discuss and learn from each other about how to make science more equitable and diverse.
We believe that science should be open to everyone, and are very grateful and supportive of the open science movement!
To make our work freely available to anyone, we pre-register our experiments and post pre-prints via the Open Science Framework.