Name: Dr. Kristin Jay (née Janschewitz)
Title: Assistant Professor
Office Location: Dyson 345
Extension: (845) 575-3000 ext. 6213
Degrees Held:

Ph.D. Cognitive Neuroscience (2009) - University of California, Los Angeles

B.A. Psychology (2004) - Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts


I am a cognitive psychologist. As an undergraduate, I became interested in psychology when I learned that psycholinguistics existed--a scientific way to study how people use language! As a graduate student and postdoc, my research projects involved the effect of emotion on cognitive prcesses like attention, long-term memory, and executive function. My dissertation was generally about cognitive and emotional regulation in the context of maladaptive coping and functional physical disorders. My research continues to involve a combination of emotion, language, and cognitive control issues... lately I'm interested in our use of euphemisms and self-censorship. Finally, although I've always studied relatively high-level cognitive processes, I've always been fascinated by the organization and functioning of our sensory systems. 

At Marist, I teach Learning & Cognition, Biopsychology and Research Methods I. I involve a group of dedicated students in my own research (the "WTF lab") and I support independent study and honors student research projects. I am also the advisor to the psychology club and the manager of the participant pool.


Pottery. Visual arts generally. Nature. Playing with words.

Awards & Honors:

Joseph McGuigan Dissertation Year Fellowship (UCLA), 2008-09

Shepard Ivory Franz Distinguished Teaching Award (UCLA), 2008

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, Honorable Mention, 2005

Distinguished Psychology Student (Mass. College of Liberal Arts), 2004

Psi Chi Undergraduate Research Grant, 2003


Janschewitz, K.L., & Jay, T.B. (in press). A child’s garden of curses: A gender, historical, and age-related evaluation of the taboo lexicon. American Journal of Psychology.

Chan, M. Y. P., Hamamura, T., & Janschewitz, K. (2013). Ethnic differences in physical pain sensitivity: Role of acculturation. Pain, 154, 119-123.

Jay, T.B., & Janschewitz, K. (2012). The science of swearing. APS Observer, 25(5), 21; 40-41.

Janschewitz, K., & MacKay, D. (2011). Emotion and language. In Hogan, P. C. (Ed.), Cambridge encyclopedia of the language sciences. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Janschewitz, K., & Jay, T.B. (2009). Slang and offensive language. In R.A. Shweder, T. R. Bidell, A. C. Dailey, S. D. Dixon, P. J. Miller, & J. Modell (Eds.), The child: An encyclopedic companion.  Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Janschewitz, K. (2008). Taboo, emotionally-valenced, and emotionally-neutral word norms. Behavior Research Methods, 40, 1065-1074.

Jay, T.B., & Janschewitz, K. (2008). The pragmatics of swearing. Journal of Politeness Research, 4, 267-288.

Jay, T.B. & Janschewitz, K. (2007). Filling the emotion gap in linguistic theory: Commentary on Potts’ expressive dimension. Theoretical Linguistics, 33, 215-221 .

Research Interests:

Emotional/offensive/taboo language: cognitive, biological, social aspects. Self control with respect to this language. Euphemisms.


Sigma Xi

Association for Psychological Science

Eastern Psychological Association


Janschewitz, K.L., & Jay, T.B. (2011). Child swearing: Frequency counts and sex differences from the 1980s and 2010. Poster presented at Association for Psychological Science Convention (Washington DC).

Steinhauer, M., Smith, D., Sun, J., Lowery, M., Clark, M., Mead, R., Burgess, A., Choudhury, F., Janschewitz, K., & Moody, E. (2011). Language induced arousal increases probability of source misattribution. Poster presented at Association for Psychological Science Convention (Washington DC).

Jay, T.B., Janschewitz, K.L., & Seeley, K. (2011). Poor memories of potty training. Poster Presented at Society for Applied Research in Memory and Cognition (New York, NY).

Janschewitz, K.L., Cheung, F., Ornitz, E.M., Naliboff, B.D., & Knowlton, B.J. (2010). Passive coping is associated with increased acoustic startle reflex. Poster presented at Association for Psychological Science Convention (Boston).

Chan, Y. P., Janschewitz, K., & Knowlton, B. (2010, May). Cultural differences in pain experience: a comparison between Asian, Asian American, and Caucasian. Poster presented at the Tenth Annual Stanford Undergraduate Psychology Conference, Stanford, CA and Nineteenth Annual UCLA Psychology Undergraduate Research Conference, UCLA, CA.

Janschewitz, K. (2009). Effects of pain catastrophizing and emotion on inhibitory control processes: Implications for psychological coping and symptom experience. Monthly lecture at UCLA Mindfulness & Integrative Medicine Seminar hosted by Mindful Awareness Research Center.

Janschewitz, K., & Knowlton, B.J. (2009). Pain catastrophizing associated with impaired inhibition in emotional go/no-go task. Poster presented in "Emotional Ups and Downs" session at Association for Psychological Science Convention (San Francisco).

Janschewitz, K., Khoo, T., & Knowlton, B.J. (2009). As association between maladaptive coping and inhibitory deficits in the Stroop task: Pain catastrophizing scores correlate with incongruent color naming times. Poster presented at Cognitive Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting (San Francisco).

Janschewitz, K., & Knowlton, B.J. (2008). Directed forgetting performance correlates with psychological responses to pain. Poster presented at Cognitive Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting (San Francisco).

Jay, T.B. & Janschewitz, K. (2006). Swearing with friends and enemies in high and low places. Paper presented in plenary session of Linguistic Impoliteness and Rudeness Conference (University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, U.K.).

Jay, T.B., & Janschewitz, K. (2005). Parent-child language values. Poster presented at American Psychological Society Convention (Los Angeles).

Janschewitz, K. (2004). Language processing with taboo stimuli. Paper presented in "Taboo Words and Memory" symposium at Eastern Psychological Association Annual Meeting (Washington D.C.).