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Lab Mission

The Sexuality and Well-Being (SWell) Lab is a research laboratory in the Clinical Area of the Psychology Department at UBC. We are a group of psychological scientists who conduct multi-method research to identify risk and protective factors contributing to individuals’ and couples’ sexual health and well-being. Our research falls into two multi-method research streams: 1) investigating cognitive and affective mechanisms contributing to sexual response and well-being in healthy and clinical samples (i.e., experimental lab-based research), and 2) investigating risk and protective factors contributing to individuals’ and couples’ sexual health and wellbeing (i.e., dyadic longitudinal research). Both research streams are focused on identifying mechanisms that we can then use to develop new interventions for sexual dysfunction.

Lab Values

We at the SWell Lab are committed to diversity and inclusion in our recruitment, hiring, and research practices. We support our LGBTQIA+ lab members and peers, our BIPOC lab members and peers, and people of all other identities. We continue to work towards creating an accountable and safe space in our lab. We do so by our commitment to continuing to learn about racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination and by mindfully conducting our research through an anti-oppressive lens. We know that this commitment is part of an ongoing learning and unlearning process. We welcome applications from people of all backgrounds who share these values and are committed to improving equity, diversity, and inclusion in psychology.

Information for Prospective Research Assistants

The SWell Lab is always interested in hearing from enthusiastic volunteers!

The SWell Lab is a good fit for students who share our lab values and who are looking to gain experience in research, specifically in the area of sexual health. Volunteer tasks may include participant recruitment, data entry, piloting surveys and experiments, and conducting literature reviews. Volunteering in the SWell Lab will provide you with a rich training environment where you will develop competence in your research skills as well as confidence.

If you are interested in volunteering as a research assistant, please send your application package (including Application Form, CV, transcript, and class schedule) any questions/requests to swell@psych.ubc.ca

Information for Prospective Graduate Students

The Sexuality and Well-being (SWell) Lab IS NOT accepting a new graduate student for the 2023-2024 academic year. I only accept applications through the Clinical Psychology program. I do NOT supervise graduate students whose primary interests are in other areas of psychology (e.g., Social/Personality, Health).

  1. Here is a link to all the information regarding admissions to the psychology department and a link to the application: https://psych.ubc.ca/graduate/admissions/
  2. Here is a link to frequently asked questions about UBC psychology’s admissions and application process: https://psych.ubc.ca/graduate/admissions/admission-faqs/

What I look for in a prospective graduate student:

  • A strong match between my research program and your research interests. I only supervise students who are interested in cognitive and affective mechanisms contributing to sexual function and sexual well-being in individuals and couples. Read my current and ongoing projects here: https://swelllab.psych.ubc.ca/research/ and publications here: https://swelllab.psych.ubc.ca/publications/.
  • Competitive applicants to our program have accrued independent research experience, such as an honours thesis (or equivalent). They also have experience presenting their research at academic conferences and/or have peer-reviewed publications.
  • Past research experience related to sexual health and well-being or who have experience with methodologies used in the lab (e.g., daily experience, eye tracking, psychophysiology).
  • Strong letters of recommendation. A strong letter typically will be written by someone who knows you well, who can speak to your experience, skills, and abilities, as well as your academic potential for success in graduate school.
  • Evidence of strong communication, both written and oral.
  • Ability to work well collaboratively and independently.
  • Computational/statistical skills or a keen interest in learning these skills and evidence of potential to do so.
  • External funding from government agencies. This funding can substantially boost the competitiveness of an application. Eligible students are strongly encouraged to apply for Canadian Tri-Council Graduate Scholarships if they are Canadian or permanent residents of Canada the same year you apply to graduate school. Click here for information about external fellowship opportunities: https://psych.ca/graduate/funding/
  • A strong fit with our labs core values (see above). As evidenced by experience/activities and/or commitment to developing these values during graduate school.

Prospective lab members should demonstrate a strong commitment to advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), with evidence of this commitment in their research, volunteerism, or other areas and/or a plan for how they will contribute to EDI in my laboratory and our department. Contributions might include one or more of the following:

  • lived experience as a member of a disadvantaged or underrepresented group (e.g., racial/ethnic minority, LGBTQ, first-generation university student)
  • past activities in programs or mentorship to promote EDI (please include these in your SOI and CV)
  • interest in promoting EDI in professional service, such as when serving on student committees or as part of student leadership in professional organizations
  • conducting research related to under-represented populations

We at the SWell Lab are committed to producing reproducible and replicable science. Wherever possible, we engage in Open Science practices including preregistration, data sharing, discovery and replication designs. Prospective Lab members should demonstrate experience in these areas and/or communicating an openness to and interest in committing to these values/practices during graduate school. Past contributions might include:

  • Experience writing/implementing pre-registrations
  • Publishing in open access journals

Please see our lab FAQ for additional information regarding graduate school applications.