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Department of Psychology


Meet Our Graduate Students

Alaa Alkhalaiwi

Alaa Alkhalaiwi
Doctoral Student
alalk4@morgan.edu

Education
M.S. in Psychology, Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Saudi Arabia
B.S. in Psychology, King Saud University, Saudi Arabia

Biography
Alaa is a third-year doctoral student in the Psychometrics program at Morgan State University.  She has a Master's degree and a Bachelor's degree in Psychology.  Her primary research interest is how technology (video and artificial intelligence) can be leveraged to develop psychometric tools, and adapting instruments for use in different cultures. Her secondary research interest is in mental health promotion.

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion

Christopher Amissah

Christopher Amissah
Doctoral Candidate
chami2@morgan.edu

Education
M.Phil. in Social Psychology, University of Ghana, Legon, Greater Accra, Ghana
B.A. in Psychology, University of Ghana, Legon, Greater Accra, Ghana

Biography
Chris is a fourth-year doctoral student and a Research Assistant in the CRèMe Lab. His research goal is to develop culturally sensitive measures that adequately address the needs of diverse populations, especially Africans and African Americans. His primary focus is translating, adapting, and validating frequently used psychological instruments in Ghanaian cultural settings. In addition, he is interested in developing alternative mental health instruments that are culturally responsive and relevant to minority groups. Chris' prior research concentration was related to the impacts of psychosocial crises on mental health, and development of psychosocial interventions for marginalized groups in society.

Primary Area of Research Interest
Developing culturally sensitive measurements

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion, Psychological Statistics I, Psychological Statistics II

Gloria Buame

Gloria Buame
Doctoral Student
glbua1@morgan.edu

Education
M.S. in Educational Psychology, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia
B.S. in Psychology, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana

Biography
Gloria is a third-year doctoral student. Her research goal is to develop culturally sensitive data collection tools that adequately address the needs of diverse populations, especially International students. Her primary focus is the development of an instrument used to measure international students' self-efficacy in test-taking.

With prior research, she was part of a county research project that collected data on preschool effectiveness in grade school using classroom assessment scoring system and behavioral coding system to observe interactions and engagement between teachers and former preschool students from kindergarten to the third grade.

Primary Research Interests
Self-efficacy in International students' testing and assessment

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology and General Psychology Discussion

Kayla Chanel Hightower

Kayla Hightower Headshot
Master's Student
kahig6@morgan.edu

Education
B.A Psychology, Felician University, Rutherford, New Jersey

Biography
Kayla Hightower is a first-year master's student currently serving as a research assistant to Dr.Bryant. After completing 4 years of Division II track and field and graduating from Felician University in 2021, Kayla left with the experimental question, “Who am I after sports?” that moved her to further her research and education.  Her specific research interests include career transitions, diversity, trauma, work/school-life balance, identity crisis, racism in sport and stress management. Through her research, she hopes to bring awareness to the correlation between cognitive factors such as athlete burnout, mental workload, decision making and its relation to performance. Her experience of growing up in a less fortunate region has strengthened her determination to better understand the field of psychology through research. Her long term goal is to become a Sports Psychologist, that is known as a certified mental performance consultant (CMPC), Create a Psychological assessment or evaluation for athletes and open a gym. She seeks to create a standardized assessment tool aiming to identify these mental barriers. Kayla will present an opportunity for a better understanding of the experience of trauma, complex mental operations and how it factors into sports performance. Kayla has also launched a clothing brand to bring awareness to mental health in sports containing motivational slogans emphasizing the importance of giving athletes their flowers and paying homage.

Primary Research Interests
Relationship between underrepresented backgrounds and mental health in sports, and the relationship between trauma and burnout symptoms in collegiate athletes.

Janine Jackson

Janine Jackson
Doctoral Candidate
jajac64@morgan.edu

Education
M.Ed. in Curriculum Design and Instruction, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL
B.A. in English, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL

Biography
Janine is a fourth-year doctoral student and Research Analyst in the Center for Predictive Analytics. She has extensive classroom teaching experience as a certified elementary and secondary teacher in Maryland and Washington, D.C. Janine also spent several years as a Lead Teacher and Data Coordinator for select schools in the Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (Abu Dhabi, UAE). Her primary research centers around the development and validation of instruments used to measure affective characteristics of teachers as well as non-cognitive measures of student success. Janine is a 2021-2022 White House HBCU Scholar and currently serves as the student member of the Outreach Committee for the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), a member of the Psychometric Society Graduate Student Committee, the Chair of the Jamaica Diaspora Education Task Force Education Leadership Committee, and the Programming and Events Director for the International HBCU Exchange (iHBCUx).

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion

Yvette Jackson

Yvette Jackson
Doctoral Candidate
yvlee1@morgan.edu

Education
M.A. in STEM Education, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD
B.S. in Chemistry, Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD

Biography
Yvette is a sixth-year doctoral student. Her research interests include rating scale development and validation and Identifying rater effects/ rater bias in educational testing and teacher evaluations utilizing latent trait models. In addition, she is interested in conducting research on K-12 teacher attrition and migration rates as well as biases in performance evaluations and educational testing. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cycling, traveling, taking long walks in the park, and spending time with family and friends.

Anya Jones

Anya Jones
Doctoral Student
anjon46@Morgan.edu

Education
B.A. in Psychology, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD
M.A. in Educational Psychology (concentration in Statistical Analysis and Research Methods), Ball State University, Muncie, IN

Biography
Anya is a second-year doctoral student who specializes in qualitative and quantitative educational research. Her past research topics include Attention, Sensation and Perception and Multicultural Education in Nicaragua. Anya is currently a Data Quality Analyst and a former teacher for Baltimore City Public Schools. She is an advocate for equitable education and student wholeness initiatives, and works with organizations such as the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship and the Greater Baltimore Urban League to promote youth empowerment. Anya plans to center her future research around K-12 standardized testing, specifically assessment and diagnostic instruments used for Special Education students.

Banji Kumolalo

Banji Kumolalo Headshot
Doctoral Student
bakum1@morgan.edu

Education
M.Sc. in Clinical Psychology, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
B.Sc. in Psychology, University of Ado-Ekiti, Ado Ekiti, Nigeria

Biography
Banji is a first-year doctoral student and a Research Assistant in the CRèMe Lab. He is a mental health professional with several years of clinical practice in a tertiary health institution. His research goal is to develop culturally sensitive, relevant, and responsive measures that will sufficiently address the need of diverse populations particularly Africans and African-Americans. His primary focus will be on developing new psychological measures for use in the mental health practice in Nigeria as well as validating, and re-validating of existing measures used in mental health assessment and substance abuse treatment assessment processes in Nigeria. His past research endeavor had focused on Psychological Wellbeing, Depression, Anxiety, Suicide, Substance Use/Abuse among diverse populations and different age groups.  His other research interests include Substance Use Prevention and Recovery.

Breanne Martin

Breanne Martin
Master’s Student
brmar31@morgan.edu

Education
B.S. in Psychology, Morgan State University

Biography
Breanne Martin is a third-year master's student. She has previously served as a research assistant and teachers assistant in Morgan State University's Psychology Department. Breanne Martin also has a passion for policy and research. She was an ASCEND research scholar and a member of the Student Research Center (SRC) at Morgan State University. She aspires to research various mental and physical health disparities caused by adverse environmental factors within minority populations. Through her research, she seeks to administer change within impoverished communities by going into health policy-making. Her specific research interests include trauma psychology, health psychology, inflammatory diseases within African Americans, and psychological assessments measuring responses to race and trauma. After she completes her master's degree, she plans to earn a Ph.D. in Psychometrics.

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion

Yannick T. Nsani

Yannick Nsani Headshot
Doctoral Student
yansa1@morgan.edu

Education
Ph.D. in Sociology, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsan, South Korea
Masters in Disaster Risk Management, Ardhi University, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
B.Sc. Management, University of Buea, Buea, Cameroon

Biography
Yannick T. Nsani is a first-year doctoral student in the Graduate Program in Psychometrics.  He is also a Research Assistant in the CRèMe Lab. His primary role in the lab is to learn the application of Rasch model in the development of culturally responsive measurement techniques for social, environmental and psychosocial research.

His past research focused on disaster management, hazard risk assessment and development of climate change mitigation and adaptation practices in coastal areas in Sub Saharan Africa. His current research interest is how to develop measurements for risk perception on community and industrial based hazards.

 

Taj RollinsĀ 

Taj Rollins 
Doctoral Candidate
tarol3@morgan.edu

Education
M.S.W. in Social Work, Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD
B.A. in Psychology, Hiram College, Hiram, OH

Biography
Taj is in her fifth year of the program. Her research interests include measuring cultural competency among social workers. Cultural competence is an important element of being a successful social worker. She is interested in creating and validating a self-reporting survey that measures cultural competence of pre-service social workers.

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion, Introduction to the Scientific Method, Psychological Statistics I, Psychological Statistics II

Micah Russell

Micah Russell Headshot
Master's Student
mirus3@morgan.edu

Education
B.A. in Psychology, Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, PA

Biography
Micah is a first-year master’s student.  His primary joy is in the research process itself and seeks to become a master of the process in research so as to apply these skills in the many areas that interest him.  That being said, his research interests include finding different ways to conduct research and improve upon methods of assessment.  Particularly, can one take a paper and pencil measure and transform it in such a way to make it a physical task that could improve scores and elicit better results from individuals who maybe do not have the ability to take paper and pencil tests and exams well.  He seeks to look at the process of research and create new measures and processes that could challenge existing ones and seeks to cast a wide net in research to see how each area can in turn affect another.

Prior research included one study in which he looked at how transliminality (a state of heightened awareness in an individual) would affect an individual’s ability to detect objects and stimuli with his primary role in the study being analyzing and evaluating data.

Tonya Taylor

Tonya Taylor
Doctoral Student
toros4@morgan.edu

Education
M.A. in Counseling Psychology, Bowie State University, Bowie, MD
B.A. in Psychology, Trinity Washington University, Washington, DC

Biography
Tonya is a sixth-year doctoral student. Her research interests include culturally competent psychological assessment and educational testing of minorities. Through her research, she is also interested in addressing the stigma that may be felt by members of communities of color when they seek professional psychological services. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.

Primary Research Interest
Culturally Competent Psychological Assessment and Educational Testing of Minorities

Undergraduate Courses Taught
General Psychology Discussion and Scientific Methods in Psychology

Godwin Chinemerem Umeobi

Godwin Umeobi Headshot

Doctoral Student
goume1@morgan.edu

Education
M.Sc. in Forensic Psychology from Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu, Nigeria.
B.Sc. in Psychology from Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria.
Associate Degree in Psychology from Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria.

Biography
Godwin is a first-year doctoral student and a Research Assistant in the Culturally Responsive Measurement (CRèMe) Lab. He is interested in developing culturally specific psychological measures and adapting tests developed in other cultures to sufficiently meet the specific needs of various populations, especially Africans.

Godwin has worked on several projects involving developing and validating survey instruments, data collection (on-site and online), and analysis using SPSS and Process Macro. He aspires to adapt and re-validate frequently used psychological instruments in Nigerian cultural (research and practice) settings. Godwin's initial research areas were security consciousness and anti-social behavior tendency among young adults in southeastern Nigeria.

Area of Primary Research Interest
Developing and adapting psychological tests to best suit the culture of their use.