University of Southern California, USA
Xiao-Fei Yang is a postdoctoral research associate at the Brain and Creativity Institute and the Rossier School of Education at University of Southern California. She is interested in the psychological and neural bases of social emotions, how they are influenced by sociocultural and biological factors, and how they can inform educational practices. She earned a PhD in neuroscience from USC, studying the behavioral and neurobiological correlates of admiration and compassion in young adults in Beijing and in Los Angeles, under the guidance of Dr. Mary Helen Immordino-Yang. Her dissertation work focuses on the connection between emotional experience and the body, in particular the relationship between heart rate physiology and social emotion processing. As a postdoctoral research associate, she continued to work with Dr. Immordino-Yang investigating the development of social emotional ability in adolescents from East Asian and Latino immigrant families in low-SES Los Angeles neighborhoods. Using insights from these studies, she is also involved in designing school-based interventions to improve adolescents’ positive development and learning.