Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Dr. Margaret (Megan) Fields-Olivieri | Pronouns: She/Her

Megan is an Assistant Professor who joined the UNCG Clinical Psychology faculty in 2021. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Duke University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in child clinical psychology from Penn State University. She completed her predoctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine, where she received specialized training in infant and early childhood mental health. Megan’s research focuses on the intersection of emotional and verbal development in early childhood, particularly the role that toddlers’ emotions play in parent-child communication. She is especially interested in leveraging novel technologies to sample everyday parent-child communication and emotion socialization processes in ecologically valid ways. In her spare time, Megan loves spending time with her family, eating good food, listening to podcasts and spending time outside.

Graduate Students

Brianna Halter | Pronouns: She/Her

Brianna is a first-year doctoral student in the Clinical Psychology program at UNC Greensboro (Fall 2022 Cohort). She received her B.S. in Psychology at Washington State University in 2020, where she continued to work as a post baccalaureate in an Infant Temperament Lab and Adolescent Personality and Social Media Lab until Fall 2022. She is interested in exploring parent-toddler interactions and their impact on emotion regulation and language development, with a particular interest in understanding the risk and protective factors that may interplay within said interactions. In her free time, Brianna enjoys venturing outdoors, practicing yoga, and taking aimless night drives while listening to good tunes.

Ei (Crystal) Thinzar | Pronouns: She/Her

Crystal is an international student from Myanmar and a second-year doctoral student in the Clinical Psychology Program at UNC Greensboro (Fall 2021 Cohort). She received her B.S. in Psychology with Disciplinary Honors from UNC Greensboro in May 2020. Upon graduation and before entering the clinical doctoral program, she worked closely with Dr. Margaret Sheridan as a full-time lab manager in the CIRCLE Lab at UNC Chapel Hill. Broadly, she is interested in identifying developmental pathways to psychopathology within family, psychosocial and sociocultural contexts with a focus on moment-to-moment parenting and the role of language in emotion regulation. Professionally, she is passionate about mentoring and raising mental health awareness in the Asian community. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, watching TV shows and exploring different kinds of spicy food.

Crystal's Master's Thesis Project

The primary goal is to develop a coding system that captures the content of parent speech within daylong samples of parent-child conversations as recorded and quantified by Language Environment Analysis (LENA). Specifically, the study will assess the pattern in which different parental response codes follow different toddler cues (i.e., toddler vocalizations of positive or neutral valence, vocalizations of negative valence and cries) in naturalistic settings.

Kristin Jennings | Pronouns: She/Her

Kristin is a first-year doctoral student in the Clinical Psychology Program at UNC Greensboro (Fall 2022 Cohort). She earned her B.S. in Psychology from the University of North Florida and her M.S. in Psychology from Villanova University. As a Master’s student, she worked with Dr. Janette Herbers studying developmental processes of risk and resilience in children experiencing family homelessness. Prior to entering doctoral training, Kristin worked as a home visitor through the Healthy Families Arizona program in Tucson. Currently, she is interested in studying parent-toddler communication to capture the dynamic, dyadic processes involved in language and emotion regulation development. She is also interested in how individual factors, such as parent emotion socialization goals and child temperament, may influence these processes. In her free time, Kristin enjoys being in nature, doing yoga, or watching a good limited series.

Post-Bacc Research Assistants

Dianna Mock

Pronouns: She/Her

Dianna recently graduated from UNC Greensboro with a double major in Psychology and Sociology. She plans on working towards her goal of becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor, working with children and adolescents. Outside of school, she enjoys hiking and spending time with friends and family. She is very excited to be a part of the TALK lab this spring!

Undergraduate Research Assistants

J'Leah Morman

Pronouns: She/Her

J'Leah is a junior majoring in Psychology. She is interested in working in the TALK lab because it is a great opportunity to expand her knowledge in the field of clinical psychology while also gaining experience working with children. Her goal is to pursue a career in Psychology that involves mentoring and helping children. In her free time, she likes to watch movies, paint, and listen to music.

Mackenzie Rippey

Pronouns: She/Her

Mackenzie is academically a senior, but this is her second year at UNCG. She is looking forward to getting research experience and understanding more about the effects of language on young children. In her free time, she loves roller skating, reading, and art. She also enjoys just relaxing in bed to a good show or movie. A fun fact is that she has 12 siblings!

McKenna Moore

Pronouns: She/Her

McKenna is a junior studying psychology and sociology. She is interested in how communication/interaction with adults influences language and general development in children. As her parents are speech therapists, she is really excited about seeing language development from a more psychological/ analytical perspective through this lab. In her free time, McKenna enjoys being outside, hanging out with my dogs, and making digital artwork.

TALK Lab Alumni

Undergraduate Research Assistants

Natalya (Rae) Little [Fall 2021 - Summer 2022]

Kaira Farrar, Gabrielle (Gabby) Louque, Natasha Njoroge [Fall 2021 - Spring 2022]
Eric Cata, Tamitayo Sasore [Fall 2021]