Juliana Schroeder, Professor

Closed (1) Experimental Social Science Laboratory (Xlab)

Closed. This professor is continuing with Spring 2021 apprentices on this project; no new apprentices needed for Fall 2021.

Founded in 2004, the Experimental Social Science Laboratory (Xlab) conducts experiment-based investigations of issues of interest to social scientists.

Xlab supports UC Berkeley’s world class research by providing resources such as access to participant pools, experiment coordination, payment support, access to softwares, grants, and more. It also provides technical and administrative support.

Joining the Xlab, you will gain experience in a variety of different aspects of research that enable Xlab to continue providing social scientists exceptional resources to conduct research.

There are at least 3 major projects you can choose to be assigned to:

1. Building and managing the monthly Xlab researcher newsletter. This will involve interviewing various faculty across Berkeley every month to build a researcher spotlight, collecting and compiling data from and about the SONA subject pool, gathering facts and news about the Xlab, and pulling all these aspects into one newsletter monthly.

2. Managing the Xlab website. This will involve updating the website with the latest and the most relevant information and completing revamping projects based on instructions from managers, in addition to other tasks to help maintain the website in its best possible shape.

3. Running quality control studies for subject pools. This will involve building and running a monthly survey on the SONA, MTurk, and Prolific subject pools to monitor the quality of data received from participants. You will also be responsible for analyzing the data and compiling it to be presented to other researchers in the Xflash newsletter.

You will be in direct communication with Professor Juliana Schroeder for all of the projects listed above, and will get a chance to work with her closely based upon performance.

Day-to-day supervisor for this project: Aastha Mittal, Staff Researcher

Qualifications: For all projects, we seek students who are motivated, pay close attention to detail, and are eager to learn. We are especially interested in students who want to learn about what underlies running and managing research projects on the ground with participants. Specific qualifications for projects are listed below: Project 1: Experience with design, and students with good communication skills are preferred. Project 2: Experience with website design, especially DreamWeaver platform, is preferred. Project 3: Experience with data or data analysis, or students who have taken statistics or research methods classes are preferred.

Weekly Hours: to be negotiated

Related website: http://xlab.berkeley.edu/

Closed (2) Communicating and Connecting with Others

Applications for fall 2021 are now closed for this project.

Technology is rapidly changing, giving humans more options than ever to decide how to communicate with each other. Whereas online options to engage with others are expanding, in-person contact seems to be decreasing. How are these changes affecting the way people connect with each other? How does this affect how people form relationships, make decisions, and judge others?

This research involves at least two big projects:

1. How does the medium of communication affect our judgments of people, and our ability to understand what they really mean? In this project, we explore whether hearing a person’s speech makes them seem smarter, more likable, and more sincere than reading the exact same words in text. We also test whether other media, such as watching a person in video, changes judgments of them. We examine consequences of engaging with people in different media, including likelihood of conflict and dehumanization.

2. If humans are social animals, then why do they choose to remain disconnected with people sometimes? Here we explore when people don’t want to connect with others, such as when they are strangers. In one set of studies, we asked strangers to have conversations on public transportation (e.g., buses, cabs, trains). We find that even when people say they don’t want to connect with someone, they typically have a good experience once they are doing it. We are currently expanding on these results, testing other types of conversations to see what factors affect people’s likelihood of engaging in conversation.


You will gain experience in nearly all aspects of the research process, including theoretical/literature review, laboratory protocol design, data collection, and questionnaire quality control. NOTE: Project related tasks can be both in-person and remote depending on California and UC Berkeley's public health guidelines for Fall semester.

Day-to-day supervisor for this project: Aastha Mittal, Staff Researcher

Qualifications: We seek research apprentices who are interested in human thinking and decision making and are motivated, conscientious, and eager to learn. Coursework on research design and basic statistics is a plus. We are especially interested in students who are considering applying to graduate school to do research in Psychology or any field related to Psychology! Please check my website for full information about my research.

Weekly Hours: 9-11 hrs

Related website: http://www.julianaschroeder.com

Closed (3) Dehumanization

Closed. This professor is continuing with Spring 2021 apprentices on this project; no new apprentices needed for Fall 2021.

When and why do people perceive others as being less than human? Traditionally, dehumanization has been studied in intergroup conflict (e.g., during the Holocaust). However, recent evidence suggests that people may subtly dehumanize others as well. Consider remarks made by the lieutenant governor of South Carolina, Andre Bauer, in 2010. Speaking about the problems of government assistance at a town hall meeting, Bauer argued that the poor should not be given food assistance because “they will reproduce, especially the ones that don’t think too much further than that . . . They don’t know any better.” Bauer’s quote, intended or not, implies that the poor have a relatively diminished capacity for foresight, or a reduced tendency to think carefully about the consequences of one’s actions. This is a type of dehumanization.

We are conducting several different projects exploring factors that influence when people dehumanize others.

You will gain experience in nearly all aspects of the research process, including theoretical/literature review, laboratory protocol design, data collection, and questionnaire quality control. , Staff Researcher

Qualifications: We seek research apprentices who are interested in human thinking and decision making and are motivated, conscientious, and eager to learn. Coursework on research design and basic statistics is a plus. We are especially interested in students who are considering applying to graduate school to do research in Psychology or any field related to Psychology! Please check my website for full information about my research.

Weekly Hours: 9-11 hrs

Related website: http://www.julianaschroeder.com

Closed (4) Overclaiming Credit for Group Tasks

Closed. This professor is continuing with Spring 2021 apprentices on this project; no new apprentices needed for Fall 2021.

Groups often exhibit “overclaiming,” wherein members’ perceived contributions to a group task add to more than the logically allowable 100% of work accomplished. One reason for this overclaiming is that people allocate responsibility for group tasks egocentrically, considering their own efforts in the group more than others’ efforts. In this project, we explore the consequences of egocentric bias in groups for overclaiming credit on tasks.

For example, in one sub-project, we study whether indirect contributors (e.g., managers) are more likely to overclaim responsibility for group tasks than direct contributors (e.g., workers) because they credit their efforts that do not actually contribute to a final product. Indirect contributors’ supervisory efforts may provide an illusion of meaningful contribution.


You will gain experience in nearly all aspects of the research process, including theoretical/literature review, laboratory protocol design, data collection, and questionnaire quality control.



Qualifications: We seek research apprentices who are interested in human thinking and decision making and are motivated, conscientious, and eager to learn. Coursework on research design and basic statistics is a plus. We are especially interested in students who are considering applying to graduate school to do research in Psychology or any field related to Psychology! Please check my website for full information about my research.

Weekly Hours: 9-11 hrs

Related website: http://www.julianaschroeder.com