Dr. Joy M. Jacobs-Lawson

Dr. Joy M. Jacobs-Lawson (email) is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology. She received her bachelor’s in psychology from Bellarmine University. She received her Master’s and PhD in experimental psychology from Oklahoma State University.

Dr. Jacobs-Lawson research interests focus on real-world high risk decisions within the aging population. She has published research on retirement planning decisions, financial investment decision making, and health related decisions. In these studies, she has examined the influences of risk taking, knowledge, sex, age, and personality on the process that individuals use to make decisions and the actual decisions. Recently, she has focused on how younger and older adults’ preferences for shared and collaborative decision making are influenced by the context of the decision and individual differences such as health, marital status, and decision making competence.

Dr. Jacobs-Lawson’s teaching interests include Introduction to Psychology, Foundations in Psychology, Life-Span Development, and Senior Capstone. She has also taught courses on Cognitive Aging, Adult Development and Aging, Research Design, and Health and Decision Making. In her courses, she strives to not only teach content but to engage students through critical thinking and create an active learning environment.

Dr. Jacobs-Lawson is married to Adam Lawson, who is an associate professor in the Psychology Department at Eastern Kentucky University. They have two children who keep them very busy with school and after school activities. When she is not teaching or conducting research, she enjoys spending time with her family, helping at her children’s schools or with their scouting activities, camping, swimming, and being creative.