Psychology Professor Kelly Lambert
Randolph-Macon College’s Kelly Lambert, the Macon and Joan Brock Professor of Psychology,
was recently interviewed on Big Picture Science, a radio show and podcast.
Big Picture Science is known for its lively combination of scientific research
and engaging storytelling.
Lambert’s interview, titled Oh, Rats!,
addresses the unique role that rats play in neuroscience and medical research
due to the complexity of these adaptive mammals and the fact that their brains,
although smaller, are perfect models of the human brain.
“Rats are survivors,” says Lambert. “They have been at this ‘living game’ much longer
than humans. Consequently, the research my students and I have conducted suggests
that we can identify central truths about successful, adaptive living from these
impressive animals—information about everyday behaviors we share with the rats such
as social interactions, eating, grooming, parenting, learning—even laughing!”
Lambert, who serves as chair of the Psychology
Department, joined the faculty in 1989. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Samford
University and her master’s and Ph.D. from the University of Georgia.
Lambert, a co-director of the Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
program, was in 2007 awarded the Samuel Nelson Gray Distinguished Professor Award
In 2008 she was named Virginia Professor of the
Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the
Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
She is the author of Lifting Depression: A neuroscientist’s hands-on approach
to activating your brain’s healing power (Basic Books, 2008), The Lab Rat Chronicles:
A Neuroscientist Reveals Life Lessons from the Planet's Most Successful Mammals
(Perigee Penguin, 2011), Clinical Neuroscience (Oxford University Press,
2010) and is currently writing Biopsychology (Oxford University Press).