Mariane Bacelar named Auburn University Outstanding Doctoral student

April 12, 2022

Mariane Bacelar HeadshotSchool of Kinesiology doctoral candidate Mariana Bacelar has been named one of Auburn University’s Outstanding Doctoral students for 2021-2022. Bacelar conducts research under the guidance of Dr. Matthew Miller, associate professor and director of the Performance and Exercise Psychophysiology Lab, or PEP Lab.

“This is an unmatched honor and I feel very humbled to have been selected for this award,” Bacelar said. “This has been an exciting journey and I am extremely grateful for the support I have received from my mentor, Dr. Matthew Miller, my former and current PEP lab colleagues, the School of Kinesiology, and my students. I always say that it takes a village, and I certainly have the most supportive one.”

In the lab, Bacelar has developed an interdisciplinary research agenda that combines motor learning, psychology of human performance, and human psychophysiology.

“My research interests include understanding how practice conditions that enhance motivation affect motor skill learning and the psychophysiological mechanisms underlying short- and long-term behavior adaptation under a reinforcement learning framework,” she said.

Bacelar said the School of Kinesiology has given her countless opportunities to develop as a researcher, mentor, and teacher – all of which will help her in her goal to pursue a career in academia.

“Research-wise, I have been able to develop a skillset that allows me to combine cutting-edge psychophysiological and statistical techniques to answer my research questions,” she said. “As a mentor, I have had the privilege to engage many undergraduate and graduate students in research activities. Not only have my mentees made me a better mentor, but also a better person. Finally, the Kinesiology program has been very generous in terms of teaching opportunities. Thanks to the program’s support, I have gained a lot of experience teaching lower and upper-level courses in my area of expertise and beyond.”

Miranda Nobles