Program  in  Cognitive  Affective  Neuroscience (PICAN)

Research Assistant and Directed Undergraduate Research Opportunities


The time you commit will depend on your department, and the number of credits you have signed up for. For 3 credits, undergraduates are requested to commit to at least 12-15 hours per week of time spent assisting lab personnel with various tasks. You will largely set your own hours, but we will ask that you attend the weekly lab meeting which is every Wednesdays  from 10:00am-11:00am. You will also be asked to be present at least once a week during lab rounds on Mondays and Wednesdays. Participation in the lab for at least two full semesters is requested.

Opportunities for Undergraduates

Undergraduates doing directed research in the lab will spend their time participating in and supporting any of the activities above and are also helped to pursue a new research question for their directed research project. Their project can involve re-analyzing already collected data to answer a new question of interest to them, or can involve creating a new manageable project (e.g., involving pilot physiological data collection or self-report measures).

Our Commitment to Training

Useful skills and qualities

Undergraduates who are most successful working in this environment are working towards a degree in psychology, neuroscience, computer science, or a related field, aren’t afraid of computers, are willing to learn new tasks, enjoy teamwork, and are responsible and interested in research.

While this all may sound very advanced, DON’T WORRY! We put a lot of time into training and will make sure you’re comfortable, competent, and supported in any procedure before you try it alone! We have biweekly administrative/planning/project-review lab meetings and weekly scientific lab meetings which all RA’s and undergraduate research assistants should attend.

If you’re interested in being a research assistant or completing directed undergraduate research, please send us the following information: A statement of why you’re interested in being involved in the lab, a summary of your academic/professional background (a resume or vita would be perfect but not necessary), your GPA in your major, contact info, and when would be best to contact you.

Also, please fill out the pican-lab-experience-questionnaire, and include it with the above information.

Information can be sent by e-mail at: or by US-mail to: Greg Siegle, Ph.D., Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, 3811 O’Hara St, Pittsburgh, PA 15213