Self and Motivation Lab (Self-Evaluation and the Pursuit of Self-Esteem, The Self in Social Contexts, Beliefs about the Nature of Happiness)

Dr. Park with her students.

Positions filled but applications accepted on a rolling basis for research in the Self and Motivation Lab.

Project description

Research in the Self and Motivation Lab focuses broadly on questions pertaining to the self, self-esteem, motivation, and interpersonal processes. In particular, we examine how aspects of the self, such as trait self-esteem, contingencies of self-worth, and rejection sensitivity interact with situational variables to shape intrapersonal and interpersonal outcomes. The overarching theme of our research program is to demonstrate that goals and motives, which are shaped by aspects of the person and the situation, have important implications for human behavior, performance, and well-being.


Project outcome

The specific outcomes of this project will be identified by the faculty mentor at the beginning of your collaboration. 

Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment Year-long
Start time Spring
Level of collaboration Large group collaboration
Benefits Academic Credit, Volunteer
Who is eligible Students who are motivated, reliable, and ready to learn new skills. No prior research experience is required. 
Support Funding is available after the completion of the preparation badge. See below.

Project mentor

Lora Park

Associate Professor


344 Park Hall

Phone: (716) 645-0228



To engage with this project, you will work through a series of Project-Based Collaboration digital badges to guide your experience. These badges will:

  1. Guide you in setting your goals and intentions as well as gaining additional context,
  2. Enhance your collaboration with your mentor/partner,
  3. Support your reflection and help you integrate your learning with your academic and professional goals.

All students who wish to participate in a project on the Project Portal must first complete the Project Preparation Digital Badge. First, contact the project mentor to discuss availability and after you’ve received approval, you can start the Project Preparation Digital Badge.

Preparation guidance

Once you have registered for the Project Preparation Digital Badge, you will receive further instructions related to the activities you will need to complete. In addition, you will also complete the following preparation activities for this particular project:

  • Become familiar with the lab website and current projects