Mary Duell

Mary N. Duell, Ph.D.

Associate Teaching Professor, Coordinator for Undergraduate Programs - Graduate, Online, and Professional Studies

College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Coburn - 850 Broadway Street


Human sexuality, research methods, & online learning

Research Interests

Current research primarily focuses on student-driven projects in comparative psychology. Other interests include radicalization and terrorism.

Past research centered on discrimination learning in rodents, specifically the role of pheromones in learning and behavioral guidance. Current research interests involve student-generated projects, which have come from an undergraduate research course. Future interests include the role of the Internet in faculty/student communications and use of new technologies, such as iPads and other mobile devices, to improve student learning outcomes.


  • Ph D: Experimental Psychology, (1981), Texas Christian University
    Supporting Area: Animal Learning
    Dissertation/Thesis Title: Overshadowing/generalization vs. pre-experimental bias in utilization of motivation-specific odors in rats
  • MA: Psychology, (1976), Austin Peay State University
    Dissertation/Thesis Title: Sleepy and hostile: The effects of REM deprivation on shock-elicited aggression
  • BS: Psychology, (1973), University of Tennessee at Martin


Duell received her doctorate in experimental psychology in 1981 and has been involved in higher education since that time. Her teaching interests include human sexuality, fundamentals of conditioning and learning, biological psychology, and research methods and their application. Duell is especially interested in promoting student involvement in research, including presentation of student projects at regional and national conferences, and publication of findings from student-generated research studies. She has also been instrumental in the design and teaching of several online courses at UMass Lowell, including Human Sexuality, Biological Psychology, Comparative Psychology: Animal Behavior, and Research III: Laboratory. The department's online bachelor's program in psychology currently serves hundreds of students worldwide. Duell has been teaching at UMass Lowell since 1996.

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Teaching Excellence Award (2016), Teaching - Department of Psychology, College of Fine Arts and Social Sciences, UMass Lowell
  • Faculty Award Based on Nomination by a Current Student Athlete with the Highest GPA in Their Sport (2013), Teaching - UMass Lowell
  • Outstanding Continuing Education Faculty Award – Honorable Mention (2011), Teaching - University Professional and Continuing Education Association (New England)
  • Exceeding Excellence Award for Continuing Education (2009), Teaching - University of Massachusetts: Student Government Association
  • Haskell Memorial Award for Distinguished Teaching (2009), Teaching - UMass Lowell
  • Faculty Excellence and Service Award (2007), Service, University - University of Massachusetts Lowell: Division of Online and Continuing Education
  • Honors Mentor of the Year (2006), Teaching - University of Massachusetts Lowell: University Honors Program
  • Elected as an Associate Mentor (1980) - Society of the Sigma Xi
  • Elected to Membership (1980) - Phi Kappa Phi

Selected Publications

  • Deckoff-Jones, A., Duell, M.N. (2018). Impact of disability type and accommodation type on evaluations of accommodation appropriateness. Rehabilitation Psychology, 63 68-76.
  • Duell, M.N. (2006). Distance Learning: Psychology Online (pp. 142-146). Handbook of the Teaching of Psychology
  • Ludvigson, H.W., Duell, M.N. (1999). Motivationally specific episodic odors in relation to preexperimental bias, reward traces, and urine. The Psychological Record, 49(3) 5.
  • Travis, M.N., Ludvigson, H.W., Eslinger, P.J. (1988). A reexamination of the effects of motivational state on utilization of conspecific odors in the rat. Animal Learning & Behavior, 16(3) 318--323.
  • Davis, S.F., Weaver, M.S., Janzen, W.C., Duell, M.N. (1985). Utilization of odor cues as a function of reward-magnitude contrast and delay of reinforcement. The Journal of general psychology, 112(2) 173--183.
  • Duell, M.N., Neideffer, J.D., Davis, S.F. (1982). Free operant single and double alternation in the albino rat: A demonstration. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 19(5) 287--290.
  • Neideffer, J., Davis, S.F., Duell, M.N. (1980). Active avoidance responding as a function of insulin-induced hypoglycemia. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 15(5) 324--326.
  • Davis, S.F., Voorhees, J.W., Duell, M.N. (1979). External stimulus control of target-directed attack and biting elicited by tailshock. Animal Learning & Behavior, 7(1) 95--98.
  • Davis, S.F., Cronin, E.L., Meriwether, J.A., Neideffer, J., Duell, M.N. (1978). Shock-elicited attack and biting as a function of chronic vs. acute insulin injection. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 12(2) 149--151.
  • Davis, S.F., Gussetto, J.K., Tramill, J.L., Neideffer, J., Duell, M.N. (1978). The effects of extended insulin dosage on target-directed attack and biting elicited by tailshock. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 12(1) 80--82.
  • Davis, S.F., Tramill, J.L., Voorhees, J.W., Duell, M.N., Prytula, R.E. (1977). Shock-elicited aggression as a function of shock modality. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 9(2) 145--147.
  • Duell, M.N., Voorhees, J.W., Davis, S.F. (1977). Sleepy and hostile: The effects of REM sleep deprivation on shock-elicited aggression. Animal Learning & Behavior, 5(2) 148--152.
  • Neideffer, J., Duell, M.N., Davis, S.F., Voorhees, J.W., Prytula, R.E. (1977). Sweet and sour rats: The effect of insulin dosage on shock-elicited aggression. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 10(4) 311--312.
  • Davis, S.F., Prytula, R.E., Noble, M.J., Duell, M.N. (1976). Motivational specificity of the signal value of odor cues. Animal Learning & Behavior, 4(4) 407--410.
  • Davis, S.F., Duell, M.N., Flood, L., Seago, J.D., Prytula, R.E. (1976). The partial reinforcement effect as a function of surgical anosmia. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 7(4) 401--402.
  • Davis, S.F., Beighley, B.G., Libretto, J.S., Duell, M.N., Prytula, R.E. (1975). Contrafreeloading as a function of early environmental rearing conditions. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 6(6) 595--597.

Selected Presentations

  • Cyberbullying, cybervictimization, and decision making, 2018 - San Francisco, CA
  • Disability type affects judgments of accommodation appropriateness - Meeting of the Association for Psychological Science, 2017 - Boston, MA
  • observation of infant western lowland gorilla - Meeting of the New England Psychological Association, 2017 - Newton, MA
  • Perception of tattooed and non-tattooed models - Meeting of the Association for Psychological Science, 2016 - Chicago, IL
  • Promoting original research in an online student population - Meeting of the University and Professional Continuing Education Association, 2012 - Ogunquit, ME
  • The effects of reinforcer type on utilization of motivation-specific odors in rats - Meeting of the Southwestern Psychological Association, 1989
  • AIDS and college students: Knowledge, attitudes, and behavior - Meeting of the Southwestern Psychological Association, 1988