Students walking on Penn campus
Social Action Lab





Dolores Albarracín


Dolores Albarracín, Ph.D.
Alexandra Heyman Nash University Professor 
Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor


More about Dr. Albarracín




Lab Researchers


CJ Calabrese Headshot

CJ Calabrese, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Martin Fishbein Postdoctoral Fellow

Christopher (CJ) Calabrese, PhD, MPH, is the Martin Fishbein Postdoctoral Fellow at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD in Communication at the University of California, Davis. CJ is primarily interested in health and science communication, focusing on developing online network and social media interventions. His research interests broadly center around new media, misinformation, social networks, and online technologies, with topics focusing on HIV prevention, public perceptions of gene editing, vaccination, harm reduction, and COVID-19. View Calabrese's CV.


Sally Chan Headshot

Sally Chan, Ph.D.
Research Assistant Professor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Sally will be a research associate at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania later this year.

Sally Chan has a background in information systems and received her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Hong Kong in 2014. She was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship in the Cambridge Prosociality and Well-Being Lab in the UK. Sally has joined the Social Action Lab in the Psychology Department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign since late 2015. Her research seeks to enhance both mental and physical well-being for a better quality of life. She was involved in projects examining the self-regulatory processes on well-being in the online (computer-mediated) and offline (face-to-face) social milieu. Sally's current projects focus on incorporating the data science approach and machine learning algorithms to examine the influences of the person-in-context on well-being.

Bita Fayad Farkhad Headshot

Bita Fayad Farkhad, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Bita will be a research associate the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania later this year.

Bita Farkhad completed her Ph.D. in Economics from Lehigh University in 2019. She is an applied microeconomist with interests in health and public policy.  Her research studies how public programs and policies affect individuals’ health and behavior. At present, her research primarily focuses on examining the impact of the Affordable Care Act on early-stage HIV diagnosis and access to HIV preventive care and the role of harm reduction policies such as syringe exchange programs on substance use. View Farkhad’s CV.

Annie Jung Headshot

Annie Jung, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Annie will be a postdoctoral fellow at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania later this year.

Annie Jung's research primarily focuses on prosocial behavior. She studies how social factors (e.g., prosocial model, social norms) affect prosocial development and variation across societies. She also studies how cognitive factors (e.g., construal level) affect individual preference to engage in different forms of prosocial behavior. Recently, she has extended her work to health domains, to examine how prosocial motivation impacts various health outcomes, including vaccination. Prior to joining the Social Action Lab, she earned her bachelor's and master's degree in psychology from Yonsei University (South Korea), and her doctoral degree in social and personality psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. View Jung’s CV.

Zone Liu Headshot

Zone Liu, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Zone will be a research associate at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania later this year.

Zone’s research focuses on understanding human self-regulation in achieving multiple goals and how setting multiple goals influences long-term health behaviors and work performance. He is also interested in interventions that optimize athletic performance. He uses diverse methods such as EEG/ERPs, Bayesian modeling, and eye tracking.

Prior to joining the Social Action Lab, Zone was a postdoctoral associate in the Human Performance Optimization Lab at Duke University School of Medicine. Zone received his Ph.D. and a master’s degree in Sport & Exercise Psychology and a second master’s degree in Statistics from the Florida State University with the Presidential University Fellowship. He received his bachelor's degree in Psychology from the Beijing Normal University, Zhuhai.


Graduate Students

Wenhao Dai Headshot

Wenhao Dai
Graduate Student, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Dai is interested in how perspective-taking and self-reflection can bring cognitive and behavioral improvement. Currently, his research addresses the role of actionability of persuasive messages in long-term persuasion (sleeper effect). He is also collaborating on a project about sequential exposure bias which studies the order in which people process congenial and non-congenial information. Before coming to the social psychology department at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, he earned a bachelor's degree in Psychology and Communication from the University of California, Davis.

Hanxiong Guan Headshot

Hanxiong Guan
Graduate Student, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Hanxiong Guan received his B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Statistics from the University of Florida in 2020. He worked as a Lab Manager at the Attitudes and Social Cognition Lab at the University of Florida (Dr. Kate A. Ratliff) and was a Research Assistant at the Threat Management Lab at the University of Florida (Dr. James Shepperd). Hanxiong's undergraduate thesis was titled: Are Sexist People Also Homophobic? A Correlational Study of Ambivalent Sexism and Anti-Gay Bias. He has joined the Social Action Lab in the Psychology Department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign starting from fall 2020. Hanxiong's research seeks to understand persuasion and decision-making.

Angela Zhang Headshot

Angela Zhang
Graduate Student, University of Pennsylvania

Angela graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2018 with a B.S. in psychology and a second major in biology. As an undergraduate research assistant, she aided in studies of memory phenomena, such as the attentional boost effect and the testing effect. Following graduation, she joined the Developmental and Motivation Research Lab at the University of Pittsburgh, where she planned and coordinated a longitudinal project examining adolescents’ motivation and engagement in math and science classes. Her current research interests lie in studying motivation and self-regulation in the context of health behavior and translating this research into interventions that promote health behavior change.

Yubo Zhou Headshot

Yubo Zhou
Graduate Student, University of Pennsylvania

Yubo received his B.S. in Psychological & Brain Sciences and B.A. in Philosophy with minors in Applied Psychology, Educational Studies, and History at UC Santa Barbara. After graduation, he joined Dr. Hongbo Yu’s Emotion Science Lab as a lab coordinator. His previous research mainly focused on biculturals’ ingroup identification and cultural differences in risk perception and subsequent decision-making with Drs. Brenda Major and Heejung Kim. Yubo has joined the Social Action Lab and started his Ph.D. studies in the Department of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania in 2021 under the supervision of Dr. Dolores Albarracín. He is primarily interested in investigating the cognitive, motivational, and behavioral underpinnings of action and inaction.


Lab Staff

Wen "Summer" Song Headshot

Wen “Summer” Song
Research Coordinator/Data Analyst, Annenberg School for Communication

Song’s research interests are focused on persuasion and behavioral change. Specifically, she is interested in how people interpret behaviors of self and others, how persuasive communication influence the behavioral change, and topics about action/inaction. Currently, she is working on the projects to examine the passive-aggressive behaviors in different kinds of interpersonal relationships and explore the factors influencing their perception and evaluation. Before joining the Social Action Lab, I earned my bachelor’s from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and worked at The University of Hong Kong. Song is in the Master of Science of Psychological Sciences Program.

Tiffany Ho Headshot

Tiffany Ho
Research Assistant

Currently a sophomore at the University of Illinois, Ho is studying marketing with a minor in industrial-organizational psychology. I'm interested in learning more about ways to maximize workplace efficiency and how certain attitudes and behaviors correspond to workplace environment. She would also like to explore the correlation between social media activity and company success, as the online presence of businesses are more prevalent than ever.


Christopher Quasti

Christopher Quasti
Research Coordinator/Lab Manager

Quasti’s research interests focus on practically applying theories of behavioral economics and social psychology to motivate individual decision-making behaviors that improve physical and mental health. Quasti is additionally interested in extending this research to the level of public health policy: focusing on effective ways of improving adherence to prevention, testing, and treatment measures of infectious diseases. This includes creating cost-effective and functional policies for at-risk populations. Before joining the Social Action Lab, Quasti completed his master’s of science degree in Philosophy and Public Policy from The London School of Economics and his bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Philosophy from Temple University.

Woman on a public bus looking at her phone, and various social media "reaction" icons floating out of her phone to imply that she is engaging with social media

Health, Social Media & Technology Group

This interdisciplinary group studies social and online media influences on health behavior and epidemiological patterns and how to leverage social media and technology to improve human health.