Meet Your Faculty Mentor: Dr. Ben Rosenberg

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Psychology professor Dr. Benjamin Rosenberg wants to help people make decisions that will allow them to live healthier lives. His research is focused on how psychology can change people’s minds – especially when it comes to embracing healthy behaviors.

Hands-on Skills Prepare Students for Research, Careers

In his Health and Motivation Lab at Dominican, Dr. Rosenberg and his students are drawing on social science to understand how emotion and motivation affects people’s reactions to health messages. The students gain hands-on exposure to skills they will use in both school and career settings. They study classic social psychology topics such as persuasion, conformity, and obedience. They apply statistics to a variety of research designs in the health and behavioral sciences. They analyze data sets to test their hypothesis and present their findings.

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Relaxed, Easy-Going Demeanor

When signing up for Dr. Rosenberg’s “Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences” class, Lisa Deane ‘23 was nervous about taking a mathematics course. Those nerves quickly disappeared thanks to Dr. Rosenberg’s “relaxed and easy-going demeanor.”

 “He completely put us all at ease almost from day one,” she recalls. “He encourages and invites feedback on his teaching techniques in order to find the best way to keep the class interested and engaged.”

Pandemic Response – Ask a Social Scientist

The pandemic has provided some real-time learning opportunities for Lisa and her classmates. In recent articles in the San Francisco Chronicle, MSN.com, Marin Independent Journal, and ABC News, Dr. Rosenberg contends that new strategies are necessary to enhance the effectiveness of COVID-19 messaging.

“Consulting more social scientists – like psychologists, sociologists, and economists – might not end the pandemic,” he writes. “But it could change the trajectory by crafting more effective or targeted messages and turning down the volume on some of the unhelpful political rhetoric.”

These real-world applications capture his students’ attention.

 “He is excited about what he is teaching us,” Lisa says. “He relates it to real life and genuinely seems passionate about the class, which makes it all the more easier to get interested ourselves.”

 

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