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Eastern Regional Conventions

2020 EPA Virtual Convention

June 17–18, 2020
Visit the EPA website.


Psi Chi Distinguished Lecturer
The Elephant, the Emperor, and the Matzo Ball: Common Knowledge as a Ratifier of Human Relationships

Thusday, June 18, 2020
2:00–3:20 p.m. | Hancock
Steven Pinker (Harvard University)
Read Dr. Pinker's Bio

Biography Statement

Steven Pinker, PhD, is an experimental psychologist who conducts research in visual cognition, psycholinguistics, and social relations. He grew up in Montreal and earned his BA from McGill and his PhD from Harvard. Currently Johnstone Professor of Psychology at Harvard, he has also taught at Stanford and MIT. He has won numerous prizes for his research, his teaching, and his nine books, including The Language Instinct, How the Mind Works, The Blank Slate, The Better Angels of Our Nature, and The Sense of Style. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, a Humanist of the Year, a recipient of nine honorary doctorates, and one of Foreign Policy’s “World’s Top 100 Public Intellectuals” and Time's “100 Most Influential People in the World Today.” He is Chair of the Usage Panel of the American Heritage Dictionary, and writes frequently for The New York Times, The Guardian, and other publications. His tenth book, to be published in February 2018, is called Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress.

Abstract: Why do we veil our intentions in innuendo rather than blurting them out? Why do we blush and weep? Why do we express outrage at public violations of decorum? Why are dictators so threatened by free speech and public protests? Why don’t bystanders pitch in to help? I suggest that these phenomena may be explained by the logical distinction between shared knowledge (A knows x and B knows x) and common knowledge (A knows x, B knows x, A knows that B knows x, B knows that A knows x, ad infinitum). Game theory specifies that common knowledge is necessary for coordination, in which two or more agents can cooperate for mutual benefit. I propose represent common knowledge as a distinct cognitive category that licenses them to coordinate with others according to the rules of one of several distinct relationship types. Many puzzles of social life, such as hypocrisy, taboo, outrage, tact, and embarrassment arise from people’s desire to generate—or to avoid generating—common knowledge.


Psi Chi Workshop
EPA 101: Getting the Most From Your Conference Attendance

8:00–9:20 a.m. | Hancock
Chair: Kristin Henkel Cistulli
Sandra Campeanu (City University of New York)
This interactive session is designed to help attendees plan their conference experience for maximum benefit. A regional conference like EPA can be overwhelming for first-time attendees and students. Which sessions should I go to? How do I meet other students and professors? These are some of the common questions. The workshop includes tips for choosing sessions, networking, and conference etiquette. All students are welcome.

Psi Chi and Teaching Symposium
Psychology as Career Preparation

9:30–10:50 a.m. | Hancock
Chair: Helena Swanson

Career Pathways and the Psychology Major
Karen Stamm, Jessica Conroy, Luona Lin, and Peggy Christidis (American Psychological Association)
Psychology represents one of the most popular undergraduate majors nationally, with about 125,000 degrees awarded annually. Nevertheless, the connection between psychology and the workforce is not always clear, nor is there a set career trajectory that students follow. This presentation will describe career pathways and workforce outcomes for psychology undergraduates, including graduate degree attainment and common occupations. It will provide suggestions for psychology faculty to address gaps in career assistance available to undergraduate students.
The Skillful Psychology Student
Jason Young (Hunter College)
Recently, the American Psychological Association’s Committee on Associate and Baccalaureate Education (CABE) commissioned a group of educators in psychology to identify how studying psychology develops employer-valued skills—cognitive, communication, personal, social, and technological skills. In this session, one of the authors will describe how to become aware of these skills, work with your academic advisor to identify opportunities to develop the skills, and learn how to market these skills to potential employers. (

Psi Chi Invited Session
Saving Science Through Replication

2:00–3:20 p.m. | Hancock
Chair: Jamie Bodenlos (Hobart and William Smith Colleges)
John Edlund (Psi Chi Research Director; Rochester Institute of Technology), Kelly Cuccolo (Psi Chi NICE Past Chair; University Of North Dakota), Megan Irgens (Psi Chi NICE Chair; University of Arizona), Jordan Wagge (Avila University), and Martha Zlokovich (Psi Chi Executive Director)
Science has long been based on replication, although we have recently become aware of various corruptions of the enterprise that have hurt replicability. Here, we begin by considering three illustrations of research which have all been subject to intense scrutiny through replications and theoretical concerns. We then discuss what science can learn through replications more generally. From there, we discuss what we believe needs to be done for science with regard to replication moving forward.

Psi Chi Poster Session
3:30–4:50 p.m. | Grand Ballroom


Psi Chi Symposium
Graduate School and the Masters Degree Option: Choices and Opportunities in a Complex Market

8:00–9:20 a.m. | Arlington
Chair: Tony Crespi (University of Hartford)
MA or PhD? PhD or PsyD? Clinical Psychology or Counseling Psychology? School Psychology or Child Clinical Psychology? Forensic Psychology? Marriage and Family Therapy? Full–Time or Part–Time? What employment opportunities exist? Is an MA a good option? Is an MA a good choice enroute to a PhD? For students interested in graduate education the choices are daunting. This presentation examines master’s and doctoral degree options, and employment. The applied nature and interactive discussion should be engaging to participants.

Counseling Psychology to Forensic Psychology: Maximizing Employability in a Competitive Environment
Tony Crespi (University of Hartford)
School Psychology to Child Clinical Psychology: Inside the Mental Health Crisis
Natasha Segool (University of Hartford)
Advisors, Mentors, and Supervisors: Reflections on Graduate Education and Training
Mikayla Alicandro (University of Hartford)

Psi Chi Workshop
Finding Fit: A Strategic Approach to Applying to Graduate Programs in Psychology

11:00 a.m.–12:20 p.m. | Hancock
Chair: Mary Jenson
Garth A. Fowler (American Psychological Association)
This presentation helps prepare students to be strategic and thoughtful when applying to graduate training programs in psychology. We will describe the different degree options available to applicants and provide advice on writing personal statements, requesting letters of recommendation, preparing for interviews and more!

Psi Chi Distinguished Lecturer
The Elephant, the Emperor, and the Matzo Ball: Common Knowledge as a Ratifier of Human Relationships

2:00 p.m.–3:20 p.m. | Hancock
Steven Pinker (Harvard University)


All Are Welcome!

Psi Chi sessions are open to all students and faculty who would like to attend.

Find out how you can start a chapter on your campus.


Need assistance attending a convention? Apply for an Unrestricted Travel Grant.

Psi Chi Central Office
651 East 4th Street, Suite 600
Chattanooga, TN 37403

Phone: 423.756.2044 | Fax: 423.265.1529


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