Lab Leaders: Dr. Rob Adelman and Jessica Ng

about Jessica's lab

Jessica's projects

• Teacher Mindset Intervention 

What makes some teachers more effective than others? A great deal of research has focused on students' mindsets and how that drive academic achievement. Many researchers have developed and tested interventions to help change students' mindsets in order to fulfill their greatest, untapped potential. However, much less research in education psychology has studied teachers' mindsets and how that can contribute to their success as effective teachers in the classroom.  This series of research studies delve deep into understanding the processes of effective teaching and the mindset(s) associated with it. By changing teachers' mindset(s), we can change how teachers interpret and respond to challenges in teaching, increase their resilience as teachers, and beyond that, set in motion positive recursive cycles that improve effectiveness of teaching over time. 


• Improving Teaching of Self-Regulated Learning in Classrooms

Self-regulation appears to be critical to students' achievement. Instead of purely putting the onus on students to be self-regulated learners, this investigation endeavors to distill critical and key drivers of the teaching of self-regulated learning - what drives self-regulated teaching in the classroom? What are the properties of teachers who promote and practice the teaching of self-regulated learning in their students? How can we develop scalable and psychologically precise interventions to promote more teaching of self-regulated behaviors in schools?


• Cultivating Strategically Self-Regulated Learners 

Effective learning goes beyond acquiring content knowledge, or working hard. It also involves the metacognitive process of thinking about one’s learning – exercising self-awareness, planning, actively monitoring one’s learning approaches, reflecting on feedback and progress, and taking control of one's learning process. Students who practice higher levels of metacognition during learning tend to be more motivated, learn more effectively, and perform better academically. This study focuses on the metacognitive self-regulation processes which set higher achievers apart from their lower achieving peers, and how we can, through the understanding of these processes, create psychologically precise interventions to help students achieve their academic goals.

about Rob's lab

Rob's projects

• Improving adult education in Singapore

This is the project that brought me to NUS. The broad aim here is to improve adult education in Singapore. The first phase of this project involves establishing how/whether learning process and predictors of academic success/dropout differ for adult learners from the traditional undergraduate student population. The second phrase of this project will be to leverage those insights in order to do something about it, which could include the development of curricula, interventions, or other practical solutions. 


• Future Self-Connectedness and Temporal Self-Comparison

This newer work examines how feeling connected to your future self predicts who you compare yourself to and how, specifically that it promotes more self-affirming types of temporal self-comparison (e.g., thinking about how you are better than you used to be), less self-deflating types of temporal self-comparison (e.g., thinking about how you used to be better), and less social comparison to others. In my dissertation, I linked these processes to emotion regulation, well-being, and academic motivation. 


• Cultural differences in passion mindsets

In the past, Patricia has examined whether individuals believe that passion (for work) comes either through fit with the job or from developing it over time (fit vs. develop mindsets). In this project, we examine cultural differences in fit vs. develop mindsets in Americans and Singaporeans. I have some ideas here, too, and am currently reviewing what Patricia and Fiona have already done so that I can take the reins of this projects. 


• Tracing causal sequences of events

This investigation proposes to examine when and why people assign blame, responsibility, or causality to agents other than (or in addition to) the one who committed the act (i.e., the proximal agent). That is, I’m interested in when individuals trace causal sequences of events, focus on distal causal agents, and even attribute the occurrence of the event to such an agent. Unlike much of the attribution literature in social psychology, I want to know the process underlying how individuals address the question "Why did that happen?" as opposed to the question "Why did this person do that?"