What kinds of projects have our SMP students done?

Katie Grein '13 presents her SMP

Check out the database of past PsycSMP abstracts

Prospective PsycSMPs: A past student may have suggested a path for future research that you would like to follow!

Students can visit the College Archives (Calvert 009-ground floor) to read or view past St. Mary's Projects Mondays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (appointments recommended).

Access to a full SMP can depend on how a student completed a release form, but most SMPs can be read or viewed in the College Archives without restriction.

Electronic copies of SMPs are usually provided to faculty and staff upon request, but students are provided electronic copies of SMPs only with the permission of a faculty member.

Gwendolyn Calhoon

Calhoon, G. (2006, May). The effects of cognitive intervention in adolescence on behavioral abnormalities in a rat model of Schizophrenia.
Mentor: Dr. Anne Marie Brady

Abstract

Schizophrenic patients who achieve high levels of education prior to onset of psychotic symptoms have better prognoses than patients who accomplished lower levels of education, suggesting that early cognitive stimulation may reduce symptoms in adulthood. The present study assessed the effects of cognitive intervention in adolescence on disrupted adult behaviors in a neurodevelopmental model of schizophrenia in rats. Neonatal ventral hippocampus lesioned (NVHL) rats were trained in an attentional set-shifting task during adolescence, which served as the cognitive intervention. In adulthood, rats were assessed for behaviors known to be disrupted in the model, including prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response, social interaction, novelty-induced locomotion, dopamimetic drug-induced locomotion, and working memory in the radial arm maze. Lesioned rats performed worse in the working memory task than shams, as indicated by total errors. The performance of lesioned rats that had received cognitive intervention, however, was markedly improved (p=.032). The results of the present study suggest that premorbid cognitive intervention may protect against impairments in cognition in schizophrenia.


Read the paper (download the pdf)