National Science Grant for Augsburg Psychology Professor Dr. Nancy Steblay

Dr. Nancy Steblay, Professor of Psychology, has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation for the project, “Collaborative Research. RUI: Understanding and Predicting Eyewitness Identification Errors: Studies Using a Unique Set of Materials from Actual Lineups.” (NSF ID: SES -1420135). Total funding for the project is $397,600. The research will be conducted over the next three years in collaboration with Dr. Gary Wells at Iowa State University. Augsburg College will receive $134,219 in support of faculty-student research.

To better understand eyewitness identification errors, the research team will conduct a series of laboratory experiments using eyewitness data sets and lineup audio files from 855 real police investigations. These experiments will test theoretical ideas that have direct implications for police practice regarding the prediction of eyewitness identification decisions from lineup bias, eyewitness verbalizations during the lineup, witness confidence statements, and witness decision latency.  Differences between double-blind and single-blind lineups will be examined for evidence of suggestive lineup administrator behaviors and influence on eyewitness decisions. The investigators will also examine the role of contextual factors on how people evaluate witness certainty statements and how contextual factors might affect people’s perceptions of lineup administrator influence.

The results of this research will help address questions about external generalization of lab-based theory and serve as a model for collecting and analyzing materials and data from actual lineups in the field. Additionally, this project will provide hands-on research experience for up to 18 Augsburg undergraduate students.

If you have any questions about this research or would like to learn more, please contact Nancy Steblay at

Augsburg Aging Lab Hosts Event on Aging-At-Home at The Common Table

Common Table

In cooperation with the Common Table, the Augsburg Aging Lab hosted a panel discussion on Sept. 26th, 2014 featuring visiting author, Beth Baker, who spoke about her new book With A Little Help From Our Friends: Creating Community As We Grow Older. After a reading from her work on the new options and alternatives available to older adults as they make choices about housing, Dr. Ben Denkinger moderated a panel discussion of speakers including Barabara Goldner from Mill City Commons, Jess Luce from the Communities for a Lifetime Initiative, and Adam Suomala from Aging Services of Minnesota. For more information about Augsburg Aging Lab events or research, contact


New York Times article mentions Augsburg professor’s work

Professor Nancy Steblay

Columnist David Brooks’ recent New York Times article spotlights the work of Augsburg’s Professor Nancy K. Steblay. Professor Steblay and Professor Elizabeth F. Loftus of UC-Irvine are co-authors of a chapter in the edited volume, The Behavioral Foundations of Public Policy. The chapter, “Eyewitness Identification and the Legal System,” summarizes recent applications of memory science to law enforcement practice and legal policy.

Department founders at the 2011 APA Conference in Washington, D.C.

At the 2011 APA convention in Washington. D. C., Dr. Dyrud of the Department of Psychology is standing in front of her research poster. Left to right, Dr. Mary T. Howard and Dr. Grace B. Dyrud,  founders of the Department of Psychology in the 1960s, and Dr. Richard J. Seime, graduate and Distinguished Alumnus of Augsburg College who took Introductory Psychology from Dr. Howard.   Dr. Howard is retired from the Veterans Administration Hospital in St. Cloud, Minnesota, and Dr. Dyrud is currently at Augsburg, while Dr. Seime is a psychologist at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.