Nancy L. Sin, PhD
Dr. Nancy Sin is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of British Columbia.
She is a health psychologist interested in understanding how positive and stressful aspects of people’s day-to-day lives influence long-term health. Her research examines physiological mechanisms (e.g., inflammatory, neuroendocrine) and behavioural pathways (e.g., sleep) that link daily experiences to aging-related diseases, particularly cardiovascular disease. She is especially interested in the health benefits of positive experiences during times of stress. This research is conducted using ecological methods for capturing experiences and stress physiology as they unfold in their natural settings. By charting the daily lives of midlife and older adults, her work aims to identify ordinary circumstances that can be targeted in interventions to promote healthy aging.
Originally from California, Dr. Sin received her BA from UCLA and PhD from the University of California, Riverside. She was a National Research Service Award postdoctoral fellow in the Division of Geriatrics at the University of California, San Francisco and in the Center for Healthy Aging at Pennsylvania State University. In recognition of her work, Dr. Sin received the Springer Early Career Achievement Award in Research on Adult Development and Aging from the American Psychological Association, as well as the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Scholar Award. Her research has been supported by funding from the U.S. National Institute on Aging, Canada Foundation for Innovation, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research.
Outside of work, Dr. Sin enjoys knitting, crocheting, and being walked by her famous dogs Muffet (cocker spaniel/poodle mix) and Luke (terrier mix).
Jin is a MA student in the Health Psychology program. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology at Chapman University (Orange, California) in 2015. Jin is interested in examining individual differences and within-person fluctuations in responses to daily stressors. His research focuses on cognitive appraisals as potential mechanisms in the links between sleep (e.g., measured via wrist actigraphy) and next-day affective reactivity to daily stressors.
Patrick is a Ph.D.-student in the Health Psychology program. He graduated from the University of Freiburg with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology (2016) and from Freie Universität Berlin with a Master of Science in Clinical and Health Psychology (2019). Patrick is interested in studying positive events in daily life. In his research, he examines why some people experience more positive events than others and whether people differ in their responses to these positive events.
Lydia is a second-year MA student in the Health Psychology program. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Chapman University in 2020. Lydia is interested in how stressful experiences, particularly everyday discrimination, shape day-to-day, and long-term health. She is also interested in the nuances of daily positive events (e.g., type of event) and their potential stress-buffering effects, particularly among socially disadvantaged groups.
Nicole is a MA student in the Health Psychology program. She completed her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at the University of Waterloo in 2020. She is interested in assessing how health behaviors (e.g. diet, exercise, social relationships) impact cognitive aging in older adults through inflammatory processes. She is also interested in how these associations may differ between the sexes.
Fei Ying (Lab Manager)
Fei is a recent graduate with a BSc in Behavioural Neuroscience. She is drawn to the integration of biological and psychosocial perspectives in health psychology, and is particularly interested in how variability in sleep relates to daily stress and positive affect. Outside the lab, Fei enjoys Pilates and birdwatching on weekends. She hopes to build on all the research skills she’s learned in the lab by pursuing graduate school in clinical psychology.
Brian Qi (Lab Manager)
Brian is a 5th year student majoring in Psychology. He is broadly interested in the interaction between daily positive experiences and stress on healthy aging. He is particularly interested in exploring behavioural interventions that improve people’s daily lives. Outside of the lab, Brian works as a Behavioural Interventionist and enjoys camping and hiking. He hopes to pursue a career in Behavioural Insights.
Amy Lee (Directed Studies)
Amy is a 4th year Psychology student minoring in Health and Society. Since her interest focuses on Health Psychology, she intends to interpret the relationship between experiences of daily life and emotional well-being. By working as a Research Assistant, she wishes not only to enhance her knowledge in Psychology, but also to improve her laboratory skills. Outside of the lab, she works as a Pharmacy Assistant.
Armina is a 4th year psychology student and a research assistant in health psychology labs. Her research interests focus on the effects of daily experiences on long-term social relationships and health. She is particularly interested in the associations between stressful events and sleep. Armina is actively involved in the community-based work and is working with children and with older adults in rehabilitation. She hopes to pursue a career in public health, with the intention of applying findings from psychology to the areas of health and social well-being.
Juliane Henkel (Directed Studies)
Juliane is a 3rd year Psychology undergraduate student minoring in Biology. With pursuing a minor in Biology, she is also fascinated by what evolutionary and social factors drive people to act in more health conscious ways. Outside of the lab, Juliane enjoys spending time outdoors, and being physically active. She hopes to pursue a career in health research.
Sohrab Ghassemieh (Directed Studies)
Sohrab is a fourth-year psychology student at UBC. He received his first Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from IAUM. He is interested in exploring social and biological factors that predispose people to experience more daily positive events and also how such factors influence people’s overall health. Outside of the lab, he is involved with community work and hopes to further his education in the field of Clinical Psychology.
Stephanie McCardle is pursuing a second undergraduate degree after a career in marketing and communications. She is interested in the impacts of social support on long-term health outcomes and aims to work in health sciences.
Chloe recently graduated from UBC with a Bachelor of Arts, where she majored in Psychology and minored in Law and Society. Her research interests include stress and anxiety, sexual dysfunction and self esteem, and personality disorders. Outside of the lab, Chloe enjoys sunny days at the beach, traveling and hiking. She hopes to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology and to become a registered psychologist.
Angela recently graduated from UBC with a BA in Psychology and a minor in Biology. She is interested in the motivations behind health promotion and illness prevention more specifically, the effects of stress on sleep as well as how positive events during stressful times can influence affect. Outside the lab, Angela is a competitive archer and enjoys rock climbing. She hopes to pursue a career in public health.
Mina is a 3rd year undergraduate student studying Behavioural Neuroscience. She is interested in health psychology research that can improve people’s daily lives, and is especially interested in the broad effects that stress has on long-term health. Outside of the lab, Mina enjoys learning languages and watching the sunset. She hopes to pursue a career in mental health.
Holy is a 4th year undergraduate student studying Kinesiology and Psychology. She is very keen about Health Psychology and is particularly interested in the impact of stress on health, and how healthy behaviours can attenuate this effect, such as by reducing inflammation levels. Holy hopes to further pursue her studies at the graduate level and to promote mental well-being as an important health determinant.
Kevin Chi (Directed Studies)
Kevin recently graduated from UBC with a BA in Psychology and minor in Education. His research interests focus on understanding the biological and behavioural mechanisms linking everyday social interactions to health and well-being in old age. Kevin has received over a dozen awards and scholarships, including the UBC Quinn Research Assistantship Award to support his independent project on age differences in the associations between daily prosocial activities and health.
Kiana is a research assistant who recently earned her BA in Psychology from UBC. She is interested in Health Psychology and is particularly intrigued by how social interactions and mental health can influence overall physical well-being such as acute and chronic illness. Outside of the lab, Kiana is actively involved in community work, and she is pursuing further training in the field of Counselling Psychology.
Ye-Von is a research assistant who recently graduated from UBC with a BA in Psychology and minor in Health & Society. She is particularly interested in Health and Developmental Psychology. Currently, she is involved in research studying infancy, cross-cultural aspects of human development, and biobehavioral pathways to healthy lifestyles and aging. Ye-Von hopes to pursue a career in Public Health, with the intention of applying her knowledge and background in psychological research to promote psychology as an important determinant of health.
Jamile De Medeiros e Silva (Honours Thesis)
Jamile is a 4th year Honours Psychology student who is conducting her Honours Thesis at the UPLIFT Health Lab. Her research focus is on how positive/negative daily experiences can influence one’s quality of sleep, and how that in turn can affect one’s health. She is overall very interested in Health Psychology, particularly how social connectivity can affect one’s physical well-being, in particular cardiovascular disease risk and inflammation. Outside of the lab, Jamile is very involved with clubs at UBC, such as the Brazilian Student Association. For the future, Jamile hopes to further pursue her studies at the graduate level in Psychology, specifically in Health or Social/Personality.
Taekeun (TK) Choi
TK is a research assistant who is in his 4th year majoring in Psychology. He has an interest in Health Psychology focused on how one’s emotions and attitude influence their mind and health. Additionally, TK would like to study more on how early social interactions form one’s personality. Besides from working in the lab, TK is actively involved in various Korean student clubs and goes on adventures to find new food.
Story is a 4th year psychology student. She is interested in how effective health psychology can help reduce the costs spent in health care services by improving health behaviours before the development of any illnesses and improving disease management if any illnesses have developed. Besides her interest in health psychology, she is also interested in neuroscience, so she enjoys volunteering for Let’s Talk Science and finds the experience incredible when she is able to incorporate what she has learnt at school when teaching kids. Outside of school, Story plays the harp and some other instruments in her leisure time.
Sonali is a 3rd year student double-majoring in Psychology and Cell Biology & Genetics. She is actively involved in the Well-being in the Daily Lives of Adults Study. Sonali is also leading her own project that examines whether daily positive experiences modify the association between depression and inflammation.