Lab Members

Rachel Baitz, MA

My research interests broadly focus on adolescent social and emotional learning, with a specific focus on digital privacy and online sharing. My Master’s research investigated how online applications may affect the behaviour responses of youth and whether or not adolescents are motivated to share information about themselves online. My dissertation will more deeply investigate the mechanisms of adolescent online posting behaviours, with a focus on determining protective factors of constant digital connections to others. Further, I continue to take an interest in the development of apps and online tools that address the online behaviours of youth as well as their ability to regulate their emotions.


Takara Bond, MA

I am completing my Ph.D in the Human Development, Learning and Culture program at UBC. My research interests include how and why we use social technology and the ways in which it impacts both social-emotional developmental and academics, as well as how we teach about social technology use. My masters research investigated how different social media motivations impact undergraduate students. My doctoral dissertation will build this, focusing on online self-presentation among teacher candidates.



Kyle Dadgar, MA

Research Interests:

I am a Master of Arts student in the Human Development, Learning and Culture program at UBC. Broadly, I am interested in how online and offline (i.e., face-to-face) social support contributes to the well-being of adolescents and young adults. In specific, my Master’s research will explore the possibility that LGBTQ-identifying youth (i.e., a group of marginalized individuals) use the Internet to enhance their social connectedness and well-being. 



Cassandra Hesse

I am a doctoral student at the University of British Columbia and an advocate for the sexual health and well being of others. My research and expertise focuses on the influence of Internet pornography on young people and parents attitudes in relation to adolescent pornography consumption, as well as the implications of technology on relationships and sexual intercourse. My dream is to promote happiness through positive sexual experiences, and to inspire the uninspired.


Natasha Parent, MA

Natasha is a doctoral student in Human Development, Learning, and Culture. Natasha’s research interests include the exploration of contextual factors contributing to the developmental wellbeing of children, adolescents, and young adults. She is particularly interested in issues pertaining to the intersections of human development and technology, and the influence of computer mediated communications in modern culture. Her current research focuses on adolescents’ and young adults’ relationships with their smartphones.


Johanna Sam, MSc

Research Interests:
I am a proud member of Tsilhqot’in Nation. Realizing the importance of a strength-based approach, I am involved in creating innovative youth-friendly educational and mental health resources. I completed a Master of Science in Population & Public Health with the support of CIHR’s Intersections of Mental Health Perspectives in Addictions Research Training Fellowship. I am currently pursuing a PhD in Human Development, Learning, and Culture program. My Doctoral research explores the association between cyberbullying and young people’s social and emotional wellbeing. I have been awarded several Graduate Fellowships, including SSHRC’s Joseph-Armand Bombardier Doctoral Fellow. I have a passion for making a difference in the lives of young people, especially in Aboriginal communities.