Dr. Fran Conners is a professor in UA Psychology Department. She trained in experimental psychology and intellectual disability research with Doug Detterman at Case Western Reserve University and spent two years as a postdoctoral research associate working on reading disability research with Dick Olson at the University of Colorado. She received a 5-year NIH FIRST award (R29) as an early career investigator to study phonological skills in children with intellectual disabilities (ID). Her main research interests are in language and cognition in individuals with ID, especially those with Down syndrome. She looks for areas of strength as well as areas of specific difficulty, how they impact higher-level cognitive/language function, and what implications there are for intervention. Dr. Conners teaches courses in research methods and intellectual disabilities. For more information on Dr. Conners' work visit her website at
Registry Assistants 
Kara Acosta is a senior from Atlanta, GA. She is double majoring in Psychology and Human Development and Family Studies with a Concentration in Adolescent Youth Development. A fun fact about Kara is that she has worked at a toy store in downtown Northport, and in her free time she likes to play video games and watch cheesy K-dramas with her roommates.
Andrea Nicastro is a sophomore from Pell City, Alabama. She is majoring in Psychology with a minor in Biology on the Pre-Medical track. A fun fact about Andrea is that she has lived in a lake town her whole life, and has gotten into the lake-spirit the past few years. In her free time she enjoys riding a jet ski, boat days, and going to the beach.
Victoria "Tori" Smitherman is a senior from Mobile, AL, double majoring in Psychology and German. She is interested in becoming a psychologist, working with adult clients. In addition to her studies, Tori works at DCH hospital in Tuscaloosa part time. In her free time, Tori loves hanging out with her 2 wonderful cats and playing video games.