Videogames. Videogames represent an utterly novel form of interactive fiction, offering audiences opportunities for agency and character identification heretofore unseen in media. I am deeply interested in how and why we play videogames and the individual differences that drive varying player behaviour. My dissertation research focuses on identifying different types of gamers, understanding the motivations behind each type, and determining what needs videogames fulfills for each type.
Absurdity and Meaning-Making. My Master’s thesis research focused on the perception of absurd humour. In particular, I was interested in the polarised reactions absurdity tends to elicit, which include threat, mirth, and a profound sense of meaning. I investigated the effects of personality and context (expectations, knowledge of intention) on appreciation for absurd humour. This work was part of a broader question of how meaning is constructed in cases when meaningfulness is ambiguous and what role personality plays in that construction.
Methodology, Quantitative Methods, and Open Science. I have an enduring interest in improving our field’s quantitative and research methods. I have thus devoted much of my graduate career to developing my statistical skills (e.g., multivariate methods, Bayesian analysis), learning novel statistical techniques (e.g., the p-curve), and adopting the tenets of open science.