Welcome to the Hope Lab!

Dr. Elan C. Hope

Assistant Professor of Psychology

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Hope Lab Research

Learn more about our research projects!

In the Hope Lab we take an assets-based approach to explore factors that promote academic, civic, and psychological well-being for racially marginalized adolescents and emerging adults. We have two primary lines of research. 1) We examine psychological and contextual factors related to education, schooling, and academic well-being. 2) We investigate how sociopolitical attitudes, beliefs, and experiences (e.g., justice, discrimination, efficacy) relate to civic engagement from early adolescence into emerging adulthood. We examine what assets racially marginalized youth bring to their lives and communities and what characteristics can be developed and leveraged to support positive youth development outcomes for these youth. In the Hope Lab, we use quantitative and qualitative methodology to garner a more nuanced understanding of academic, civic, and psychological well-being. Our research is deeply rooted in the belief that while there are common developmental experiences among racially marginalized youth, individual differences and contextual variation require a deep exploration of diverse pathways to success and well-being. The numbers tell us what happens most often, what pathways are most common, and what is most likely to occur. The stories give us insights into the lives of our youth, and the meaning they makes of their own lived experiences.

  • Middle School Civics Project

    Early adolescence is a prime time period for identity development. This mixed methods project explores the question: What helps Black early adolescents develop positive civic attitudes, skills, and behaviors?

  • Minority College Cohort Study

    Black and Latino college students are at increased risk of dropping out. In this project we examine factors related to retention, academic achievement, and psychological well-being for these students. Such factors include social support, racial identity, civic engagement, and financial factors

  • Hashtag Activism

    Social media is an ever-growing vehicle for social causes and political outrage. How are Black youth using social media to have address the sociopolitical issues of our time? This is a question that we are answering in our #Activism Project through content analysis methodologies.

  • Racial Identity & Racial Discrimination

    Through several datasets we are exploring racial identity and racial discrimination among Black adolescents and emerging adults. How is racial identity related to academic and civic outcomes? How do youth understand structural and interpersonal experiences of discrimination?

Meet Our Team

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Dr. Elan C. Hope

Assistant Professor of Psychology
Dr. Hope is a proud alumna of Smith College were she received a B.A. in Psychology and the University of Michigan (Go Blue!) where she earned a Ph.D. in Education & Psychology. One fundamental question drives her research: What makes racially marginalized youth successful and well-functioning members of society?
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Graduate Students

Now Accepting Graduate Students
If you are interested in graduate school and research happening at the Hope Lab, apply to Psychology in the Public Interest at NC State. Click Join the Team to find out more!
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Undergraduate Research Assistants

Now Accepting Undergrad Applications!
Are you interested in race, justice, and psychology? Are you interested in research? Do you work hard with a good attitude? Click \”Join our Team\” to find out more!

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Learn more about research in the Hope Lab