LaB   Director

Our
Team
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Todd   Cunningham

     Todd is a faculty member in the Applied Psychology and Human Development department of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. He completed his Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Hospital for Sick Children after earning a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Toronto.  His area of expertise is adaptive educational technology, specifically the circumvention of students’ academic weaknesses to help them better attain and retain knowledge.

Our Team

LaB   Director

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Todd   Cunningham   PhD   C.Psych

     Todd is a faculty member in the Applied Psychology and Human Development department of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. He completed his Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Hospital for Sick Children after earning a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Toronto.  His area of expertise is adaptive educational technology, specifically the circumvention of students’ academic weaknesses to help them better attain and retain knowledge.

LaB   Director

Graduate Students

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Bronwyn   Lamond   MA   OCT

Current Program

PhD 5th Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

MA in Child Study and Education from OISE

BSc. in Honours Specialization Psychology from Western University

Research Interests

   Bronwyn's research focuses on student and teacher perceptions of assistive technology. She is particularly interested in the barriers to assistive technology integration into classrooms.

Contact her at bronwyn.lamond@mail.utoronto.ca

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Harrison   McNaughtan   MA

Current Program

PhD 4th Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

MA in Developmental Psychology and Education from OISE

BScH in Psychology from Queen's University

Research Interests

   Harrison's current research focuses on developing and validating ATSelect.org, a free online tool to help teacher's and clinicians find the best suited assistive technologies for their students/clients. Harrison is currently conducting focus groups with teachers to gather their perspectives on using the tool, and will soon be moving into a validation study seeking to demonstrate the efficacy of ATSelect.org empirically.

Contact him at h.mcnaughtan@mail.utoronto.ca

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Francis  Wall   MA

Current Program

PhD 4th Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

BScH in Psychology from University of Toronto Scarborough

Research Interests

   Francis is currently studying the use of assistive technology for children with difficulties in writing. He hopes to identify ways in which assistive technology can be used to bypass areas of specific weakness, such as planning, organizing, or producing words to reduce the cognitive load of tasks that may otherwise be overwhelming.  

Contact him at francis.wall@mail.utoronto.ca

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Emily Staffiere   MA

Current Program

PhD 3rd Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

BScH in Psychology from Wilfrid Laurier University

Research Interests

   Emily’s research examines the trajectory of typing skill development for elementary students in response to direct typing instruction. This research will inform intervention recommendations for students with writing challenges so they can develop their typing skills when provided a laptop as an assistive technology, and in doing so optimize its use.

Contact her at emily.staffiere@mail.utoronto.ca

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Andrea   Zians   MA

Current Program

PhD 4th Year 

Developmental Psychology and Education

Previous Education

MA in Psychology from OISE

BA in Psychology from Yeshiva University

Research Interests

   Andrea's research focuses on post-secondary students and their usage of supports and resources that increase academic success.  She is primarily interested in how under-represented groups in post-secondary settings utilize resources and supports like assistive technology and learning strategies.

Contact her at andrea.zians@mail.utoronto.ca

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Damian   Page   Ma

Current Program

PhD 2nd Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

BA Honours in Psychology from the University of Victoria

Research Interests

   Damian's research focuses on exploring factors that affect the early identification of emerging mental health disorders in children. Specifically, he is interested in the association between mental health literacy and the ability of teachers to discriminate between developmental typical student behaviour and behaviours indicative of emerging mental health disorders.

Contact him at damian.page@mail.utoronto.ca

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Lisa  Phyllis   MA

Current Program

PhD 7th Year 

Developmental Psychology and Education

Previous Education

MA in Child Studies from Toronto Metropolitan University

Research Interests

   Lisa's research is focused on improving educational equality for children labelled with special education needs.

Contact her at lisa.phyllis@mail.utoronto.ca

Kunio   Hessel   MA

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Current Program

PhD 1st Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in School and Clinical Child Psychology from OISE

MSc in Psychology from The University of Western Ontario

BCogSci(H) in Cognitive Science from Carleton University 

Research Interests

   Kunio's research interests involve barriers to education and school engagement in refugee high school students. His doctoral research will expand on his master's thesis and investigate ways in which refugee students and their families, schools, and communities can tackle barriers to education and work towards creating more equitable educational opportunities for refugee youth.

Contact him at kunio.hessel@mail.utoronto.ca

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Shona   Mistry   MA

Current Program

MA 2nd Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MA in Developmental Psychology & Education from OISE

MEd in Developmental Psychology and Education from OISE

BA in Psychology and Neuroscience from McGill University

Research Interests

  Shona's research focuses on the interaction between learning challenges and disabilities and youth substance use. Her prior MA thesis focused on the role of family factors in substance use treatment for youth with learning disabilities. The aim of my research is to understand the intersection between education and developmental psychology when treating youth with severe mental health challenges and addictive behaviors.

Contact her at shona.mistry@mail.utoronto.ca

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Paige Vaccarella  ba

Current Program

MA 1st Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

BA Hons. in Child and Youth Studies and Psychology from Brock University

Research Interests

   Paige is extremely passionate about creating accessible and barrier-free education for neurodiverse students. Specifically, her research interests include identifying the barriers that prevent students with learning disabilities (LD) from using assistive technology in the classroom. She hopes to focus on students' attitudes and perceptions of assistive technology.

Contact her at paige.vaccarella@mail.utoronto.ca

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emillie Vu  ba

Current Program

MA 1st Year 

Developmental Psychology and Education

Previous Education

BA in Psychology from York University

Research Interests

   Emillie's research focuses on children and youth with learning difficulties.

Contact her at emillie.vu@mail.utoronto.ca

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jessica wing yee ho  MEd

Current Program

MA 1st Year 

School and Clinical Child Psychology

Previous Education

MEd in Developmental Psychology and Education from OISE

Research Interests

  Jessica's research focuses on the development of accurate screening tools for children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. This research aims to understand the impact of culturally relevant content on students' performance and provide them with engaging assessment materials.

Contact her at jessicawy.ho@mail.utoronto.ca

Research

Placement

Students

These students have joined our lab for one school year as part of an undergraduate Research Opportunity Program or OISE's MEd Research Practicum Course.

Safiyyah Tahirah Alli               

MEd Research Placement Student

Audrey Chiu                             

MEd Research Placement Student

Zarfishan Qureshi               

ROP Student

Shentong Yan           

MEd Research Placement Student

Yiyuan Zhang           

MEd Research Placement Student

  Volunteers

These lab members volunteer their time to support a variety of on-going research studies happening in our lab.

Christina Zakala             

Research Assistant

Liran Leidershnaider               

Research Assistant

Ke Wong            

Research Assistants

Former Lab Members

Calista Barber

Casiah Cagan

Mirelle D'Mello

Monica Farag

Maarib Kirmani Haseeb

Shenali Lowe

Caity Lynch

Jordyn Manis

Megha Manoj

Stephanie Morris

Rudra Patel

Hannah Santilli