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Hi! I’m Ritika Khosla, and I am a senior from Delhi, India. I am majoring in psychology with minors in neuroscience and data science. I am passionate about using evidence-based interventions rooted in social psychology and behavioral economics to nudge goal-oriented behaviors. I strive to pursue a career in applied behavioral science, where I can translate academic research to practical applications to drive positive behavioral change. Currently, I am able to do that as a user research intern at Lenovo, a multinational technology company. I feel extremely grateful for all the guidance and support I have received to reach where I am.

I was not always clear about my interests. I started college with a broad interest in neuroscience and psychology. In 2021, I joined the Behavioral Lab at the Kenan Flagler Business School. As the lead research assistant, I coordinated and led research sessions relating to organizational behavior, decision-making, and neuroeconomics. My projects at the Behavioral Lab showed me the role of applied psychology in the business world. In 2022, I engaged more with behavioral science research through the Behavior Change for Good and the Center for Advanced Hindsight. These experiences made me confident in leading and interpreting quantitative and qualitative behavioral data. While I remain extremely grateful for these experiences, I wanted to be in a faster-paced research environment to account for people’s changing needs. I am truly thankful to the Gil Internship for matching me with Lenovo’s NextUX team, where I work with a team of social psychologists striving to impact change in real time.

I am working in the NextUX team, housed in Lenovo’s Intelligent Devices Group (IDC), under the guidance of Dr. Megan Frankosky – the Senior Manager of UX Research with a doctorate in Human Factors and Applied Cognition. I am leading a generative research project to explore users’ decision-making frameworks for laptop purchases. My aim is to understand how people think about devices, and also to improve users’ online shopping experience by reducing the intention-action gap. To do this, I completed a literature review on decision-making models used in device purchase behavior. I then designed and administered surveys and unstructured interviews to gather a mix of quantitative and qualitative data. Currently, I am analyzing regression models and conducting thematic analysis to synthesize the data into actionable insights for the NextUX team. I hope for my research project to shed light on ways to reduce the intention-action gap of purchase behavior and create an optimal and transparent online shopping experience.

My experience with the NextUX team at Lenovo has shown me the desirable intersection of academia and industry. Post-graduation, I hope to pursue a Master’s Degree in Behavioral Science and eventually work as a User/Behavioral Researcher. I am confident that my experience with Lenovo will remain a pivotal point in my professional journey, an entry into the world of behavioral science in industrial user research.

I feel bittersweet as this internship is coming to an end. The Karen M. Gil Program has been a tremendously rewarding experience. I am truly thankful to Dr. Steven Buzinski, Emily Dolegowski, and my Gil intern cohort for creating a supportive atmosphere and placing value on my professional development. I would also like to thank my mentor, Dr. Megan Frankosky, who welcomed me into the team and supported my growth from the start. I am excited for what the future holds and will always have immense gratitude for the internship and the people I have comes across.

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