The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs exists to support a culture of intellectual curiosity and scholarly activity on the ACU campus. This culture will help attract and retain top-quality faculty and enhance the quality of education for our undergraduate and graduate students.

We hope to encourage and support scholarship both by providing internal funds to help faculty members launch research projects and also by providing support for faculty members seeking external funding of research efforts.



♦ NIH AREA grants to support biomedical and behavioral research at    undergraduate institutions.
♦ Need summer support for research? Apply for one of our internal    grants
Scholarship Opportunity for students in the Nuclear Sciences
New in Reasearch

Dr. Ryan Jessup, Assistant Professor of Marketing

Dr. Jessup is interested in decisions.  What causes people to choose poorly?  How do learning and contextual factors influence choice?  In seeking to answer these questions, his research uses psychological models of motivation to distill the computational properties of decision making.  Computational modeling enhances research by requiring precision in theory formulation and constraining predictions.

One of Dr. Jessup’s primary streams of research concerns the behavioral differences between decisions when options are completely described vs. decisions when options must be learned about via experience.  Prior research found that individuals choose quite differently between the two paradigms but the reasons underlying the difference are poorly understood.  One of Dr. Jessup’s studies demonstrated that the reception of feedback overwhelms descriptive information, driving the behavioral differences between paradigms.  This work has led him and his colleagues (including Dr. John Homer and undergraduate researcher Allison Phillips) to build a new model that merges sophisticated decision making mechanisms with reinforcement learning in order to successfully predict behavior in both paradigms better than existing models. Dr. Jessup has previously received Cullen awards for this work and is currently seeking external funding to continue this fascinating line of research.

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