Skip to Content

Psychological Sciences

Home > People > Profile

Faculty Advisor

Elisabeth Dykens

Contact Information

Lab Website

Research Area


Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, Expected 2014, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN

M.S., Clinical Psychology, 2010, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN

B.A., Psychology, 2005, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA


Phi Beta Kappa

Association of University Centers on Developmental Disabilities, trainee, 2008 - present

American Psychological Association, Graduate Student Representative, 2009

Society for Music Perception and Cognition, 2011 - present

American Psychological Society, 2012 - present


Miriam Lense

Graduate Student
Research Area: Clinical Science

My research focuses on the physiological underpinnings of cognition and behavior, particularly for at-risk populations for whom research holds promise for interventions. I use behavioral and biological (including electrophysiology, neuroimaging, and hormonal biomarkers) measures to better understand the factors that contribute to resilience and fragility in people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (for example, Williams syndrome, Autism spectrum disorders) and at-risk infants and young children. Specifically, my research focuses on two main areas: (1) the neuroscience of music as a window into affective, cognitive, and perceptual processes, and (2) stress biology in individuals with or at risk for neurodevelopmental disorders. I am particularly interested in links among auditory perception, musical engagement, and social and emotional processing; the use and enjoyment of music in these populations; music's potential to be an evidence-based, therapeutic intervention for cognitive and affective processes; and the impact of emotion and arousal on cognitive functioning. 


Lab Website