Goldstein Research Lab

Prospective Students

Prospective Graduate Students (Ph.D., J.D./Ph.D., & M.S.)

Dr. Goldstein's research lab focuses on forensic psychology, with a particular emphasis on juvenile justice. Broadly, research focuses on adolescents' legal decision-making abilities. More specifically, Dr. Goldstein's research emphasizes: 1) adolescents' capacities to waive Miranda rights and offer confessions during police interrogations, 2) youths' capacities to successfully complete probation, 3) international/cross-cultural research on juveniles' legal capacities in Argentina, and 4) development and evaluation of a gender-specific anger management intervention to reduce anger, aggression, and recidivism. Dr. Goldstein's lab emphasizes the relationships between psychology, law, and public policy; training is provided in psycho-legal assessment, intervention, research, and the application of research findings to public policy. Graduate students are actively involved in all of these projects.

Drexel University's Psychology Department offers an APA accredited doctoral degree program and provides training for students in the scientist-practitioner model. This model emphasizes clinical research and the application of scientific principles, while concentrating on the integration of research and practice.

Dr. Goldstein will be accepting applications from prospective J.D./Ph.D. students and prospective Master's students for Fall 2016. She will not be accepting a Ph.D. student this year.

Prospective Research Assistants

Dr. Goldstein's lab currently has several ongoing projects. We are frequently interested in including undergraduate students and/or recent graduates in our projects. Eligible research assistants must be able to dedicate at least 9 hours per week to the research, for a minimum of two academic quarters. Drexel students interested in participating in our research may be eligible to earn 3 independent study credits per term or receive pay through the Federal Work Study program. Volunteers are also welcome.

Research assistants are usually involved with all of the projects to some degree, but we also try to match students with projects of interest to them, whenever possible. Research assistants receive at least one hour of supervision per week from a senior research assistant in the lab. Research activities typically involve a) developing an understanding of the research process, including an overview of the topic of interest; b) administering clinical and forensic assessments to youth and adults in the juvenile and criminal justice systems; c) acquiring data-related skills; and d) acquiring skills with the SPSS statistical package (e.g., data entry, data management, and running basic analyses). Students regularly co-author papers and posters at national and international conferences, and opportunities exist for them to attend these conferences and present the lab's research.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you taking a graduate student for the 2016-2017 academic year?

Dr. Goldstein will be accepting applications for a J.D./Ph.D. student and a Master's Student for Fall 2016. She will not be accepting a Ph.D. student this year.

What type of Ph.D. applicant are you looking for?

I usually seek a Ph.D. applicant with a strong academic record, as evidenced by their GRE scores, strength of undergraduate institution and GPA (3.5 or greater is preferred). In addition, I look for outstanding letters of recommendation (from doctoral-level academic, research-oriented psychologists, if possible), high-quality research experience, and a statement of purpose that indicates an understanding of the field and specification of the student's interests and goals. The lab focuses on adolescents' capacities to make legal decisions, so interest in a related area is usually important. In other words, we select students who we believe are the best "match" for our lab group. Other qualities that are sought are strong writing skills, initiative, and creativity.

What type of J.D./Ph.D. applicant are you looking for?

The same criteria described above applies to J.D./Ph.D. applicants. Additionally, I seek a J.D/Ph.D. applicant who has a strong interest in connecting research and public policy.

How does the admissions process work?

Beginning in January, we review applications from those applicants who have indicated a desire to work in our lab (normally 125-150 people). Out of this set, approximately 10 students are invited to Drexel for in-person interviews and an opportunity to meet faculty and students.

Will contacting you help my application, or demonstrate my interest in the program?

No. We receive so many emails and phone calls per week, and so many applications (over 500 total; over 125 to this lab), that we honestly do not have any way of remembering who has and has not contacted us. We make decisions solely on the basis of the criteria described above. Please only contact us if you genuinely have a question that we can answer.

What are your active lab projects?

Dr. Goldstein's research lab has a number of ongoing projects. The team is conducting research in five primary areas: 1) Juveniles' Miranda rights comprehension and confessions, 2) youths' capacities to successfully complete probation, and 3) international research on juveniles' legal capacities in Argentina, 4) development, evaluation, and implementation of an anger management intervention for girls in the juvenile justice system, and 5) development and evaluation of a school-police diversion program to disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline. More information is available here.

What can you tell me about applying to the M.S. Program?

We use somewhat less stringent criteria for selection to the M.S. Program, but most of what is stated above still applies. The M.S. Program is a good option for applicants who are research-focused, but either do not want to attend a Ph.D. program or are not yet competitive for a high-quality Ph.D. program. However, we do not view the M.S. program as a likely vehicle for transitioning to our own doctoral program. More information is available here.