Victor A. Benassi, Ph.D
Victor Benassi graduated from the City University of New York with a Ph.D. in psychology. He has been a faculty member at the University of New Hampshire since 1982. He is professor of psychology (Department of Psychology) and professor of college teaching (Graduate School). During the early 2000s, he served in the Office of Academic Affairs as vice provost for undergraduate studies. He is currently faculty director of the Center for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching and Learning.
Over his career, Professor Benassi's primary interests focused on the psychology of personal control and judgment of contingency. His articles address effects of situational and individual difference variables on illusory control and contingency judgments and on effects of feedback on judgmental accuracy. Other research interests include judgmental biases and errors, belief in putative paranormal phenomena, and belief persistence. He participates in research collaborations in the area of college teaching and on issues related to college teaching as a professional field of study and preparing future faculty. Professor Benassi was the principal investigator of a grant from the Davis Educational Foundation titled “The Cognition Toolbox (2009-2012). He is currently principal investigator of another Davis Educational Foundation funded grant—Teaching and Learning with Multimedia.
Professor Benassi has taught a variety of courses, including introductory psychology, research methods, statistics, meta-analysis, social psychology, abnormal behavior, psychology of depression, belief in alleged paranormal phenomena, and human judgment. He has been involved since the early 1980s in preparing doctoral students for faculty careers. From 1982 to 2012, he taught the Psychology Department's Practicum and Seminar in the Teaching of Psychology From 2002 to 2013, he led an effort to develop and offer an online course titled Preparing to Teach a Psychology Course. Students in the course have come from nearly 100 participating universities from across the USA as well as from a number of other countries. He also developed an online course on Classroom Research and Assessment through the Graduate School's Preparing Future Faculty Program. That course has been offered annually since 2002.
Professor Benassi has received several UNH awards—the Excellence in Teaching Award, the Outstanding Use of Technology in Education Award, and the College of Liberal Arts’ Lindberg Outstanding Scholar/Teacher Award. In 2003, he received an American Psychological Foundation career award--the Charles L. Brewer Distinguished Teaching of Psychology award. Professor Benassi was the 2013 President of the Society for the Teaching of Psychology (Division 2, American Psychological Association). In 2014, he published an edited book (with Catherine Overson and Christopher Hakala) called, Applying Science of Learning in Education: Infusing Psychological Science into the Curriculum.
Victor presented a lecture entitled, "Teaching, Learning, and Technology: A Role for Science of Learning," for the 2015 Mary Hennessey Blum Lecture on February 5, 2015 at the University of New Hampshire. A link to view the presentation will be available soon.