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K-State Today

November 5, 2015

Psychological sciences doctoral student receives national research award

Submitted by Michael Young

Andrew Marshall, a psychological sciences doctoral student, received a Dissertation Research Award from the American Psychological Association.

His dissertation, "A reinforcement-learning approach to understanding loss-chasing behavior," is examining the tendency to continue to engage in a losing behavior in an attempt to make up for previous losses — a common outcome for pathological gamblers. Marshall's work involves the collection of original data in people and rats in order to evaluate various mathematical models designed to understand this paradoxical behavior.

There are only about 30-40 APA Dissertation Research Awards given nationally each year. There have been only three previous student recipients from Kansas universities in the award's 12-year history.