lab Director

 

 

Benjamin A. Tabak, Ph.D. is the Director of the Social and Clinical Neuroscience Lab and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at SMU. He received his B.A. in Psychology from Skidmore College and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Miami. He also completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the UCLA Department of Psychology where he worked in the Social and Affective Neuroscience Lab, the Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Lab, and the Anxiety and Depression Research Center. 

Dr. Tabak's research explores the role of oxytocin and vasopressin in socioemotional processes (e.g., social cognition, prosocial behavior, interpersonal stress) and mental health. 

btabak@smu.edu

graduate STUDENTS

Talha Alvi, M.A. is a first year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program at SMU. He received his B.S. in Psychology from the University of Texas at Dallas and his M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Teacher's College, Columbia University. Prior to joining the SCN lab, he held research positions at the UTD Center for BrainHealth, the National Institutes of Heath, and Columbia University School of Social Work. His research interests broadly include the neuropsychological and psychosocial aspects of mental health and their influence on psychopathology, particularly mood disorders. In the future, Talha hopes to practice as a clinician, while continuing research in these fields.

talvi@smu.edu

RESEARCH ASSISTANTS

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Stejara Dinulescu is currently completing her sophomore year at Southern Methodist University, pursuing a BS in Psychology, a BA in Creative Computing, and a minor in Biology. She is passionate about research and has had previous experience working in a pharmacology lab and a neuroscience lab at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Her main interests involve learning about how biological processes influence behavior. 

 

 

 

Page Hurley was born and raised in Reno, Nevada, just 20 minutes away from the beautiful Lake Tahoe, and loves to hike. She is now a junior at SMU after transferring from the University of Nevada, Reno between her freshman and sophomore year, and is planning to graduate with a B.S. in Psychology, a B.S. in Biological Sciences, as well as a minor in Statistics. She currently works not only in the SCN lab but in the Developmental Psychology lab as well. Her goal is to one day earn a PhD in Neuropsychology and would love to specialize in functional neurology as it applies to psychosomatic disorders.

 

 

Aisha Ahmed was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. Currently a freshman at Southern Methodist University, she is majoring in history and  biology on the Pre-Med Track. Aisha has always been fascinated in neuroscience, and working at the SCN Lab is her way of learning more about the field. Always interested in traveling, she hopes to become a doctor and work with Doctors Without Borders to make a difference in the world.  

 

 

 

Bret Arata was born in Mobile, AL and is currently a sophomore at Southern Methodist University. He is planning to graduate next year with a B. A. in Psychology and a Minor in History. He plans to use his experience in the Social and Clinical Neuroscience lab to aid in his pursuit of a career in neuropsychological research.

 

 

 

 

Samantha Cheung is currently a junior on the pre-med track at Southern Methodist University, pursuing a B.S. in Psychology, a B.S. in Health & Society, and minors in Biological Sciences and Philosophy. Born and raised in Dallas, Tx, Samantha loves competing in horseback riding, watching criminal documentaries, and learning how stuff works. She is fascinated by the human mind, and hopes to better understand neuropsychology through her experiences with research at the SCN lab. Eventually, she would like to attend medical school and earn an M.D., utilizing her knowledge and experiences to help those around her.

 

Rachel Mumaw was born and raised in Portland, OR, and is currently entering her junior year at SMU. She is pursuing a B.S. in Biological Sciences and a B.A. in Human Rights, as well as a minor in English. Along with working at the SCN lab, she is active in SMU Wesley, and has done several medical humanitarian trips as a triage coordinator. She joined the SCN lab because she is fascinated with how biological processes affect behavior in humans, especially when it comes to empathy and interpersonal relationships.

 

 

 

Carter Bergeron was born in Fort Worth, Texas and raised in Greenwich and New Canaan, Connecticut. He is currently a senior at Southern Methodist University pursuing a B.A. in both Psychology and Economics. Carter was a previous member of the Couples Research Lab at SMU and joined the SCN Lab to further broaden his research skills. He is interested in pursuing his M.A. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology.