the comparative communication lab - people


Graduate Students


David Book; PhD student

David is interested in why people and (other) animals have cooperative or competitive interactions. He studies mechanisms that signal this cooperative or competitive intent. He is also developing models to help identify the critical factors that influence prosocial and antisocial behavior.



Brittany Coppinger; PhD student

Brittany is interested in social interactions of non-humans animals. This includes formation and maintenance of individual relationships, interactions between groups, and different kinds of mate-choice behaviors.



Hwayoung Jung; PhD student

Hwayoung studies call structure of titmouse species and how predation pressure might influence calling complexity in chickadees and titmice.



Steven Kyle; PhD student

Steven studies prey individuals' responses to different types of predators and to different kinds of predator behavior.



Research Technician

Jordon Davis (B.S. / University of Florida)

Jordon is working on many aspects of our NSF-grant-funded project, including field recordings of chickadees and titmice, and field recordings of how their calls travel through different habitats.



Undergraduate Students

Our laboratory has benefited greatly from wonderful undergraduate research assistants. Current undergraduate assistants are Shannon Eppert (Ecology & Evolutionary Biology), Trey Johnson (Ecology & Evolutionary Biology), Kimberly Olson (Psychology), and Phylicia Washington (Psychology).




Sheri Browning (PhD 2015) - Assistant Professor at Lincoln Memorial University (TN).

Jessica Owens (PhD 2012) - Assistant Professor at Union College (KY).

Ellen Harvey Williams (PhD 2009) - Instructor at University of South Carolina at Beaufort.





Our laboratory has benefited enormously from interactions with postdoctoral fellows from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS). One NIMBioS postdoctoral researcher working with us currently is:

Liz Hobson

For more information on Liz's research, check out her website:



Two former NIMBioS postdoctoral researchers networked with us are:

Amiyaal Ilany

Arik Kershenbaum





Todd M. Freeberg -- (PhD 1997 Indiana University)

Our laboratory has benefited questionably from the worrisome musical tastes of Todd Freeberg. When not in the field, he can be found camped out in his office most days listening to music from the previous century. Current heavy rotation includes Mission of Burma, Cocteau Twins, Nina Simone, Test Dept., Savages, Bill Withers, The Slits, Lee 'Scratch' Perry, Swans, Johnny Cash, Wolf Eyes, Subhumans (Canada), Subhumans (UK), Prince, Poison Girls, Bauhaus, The Roots, King Tubby, Donna Summer, and, of course, Wire.


Todd Freeberg CV




for more information:

Todd M. Freeberg - - - Email = - - - Phone = 865-974-3975

Department of Psychology, Austin Peay Building 211, University of Tennessee, Knoxville TN 37996 U.S.A.