People in the Lab

Dr. Rutherford


Dr. Mel Rutherford, Ph.D. is a professor in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Behaviour, and Canada Research Chair in Social Perception.  He graduated from Yale University and earned a Ph.D. in Psychology with an emphasis in Human Development from the University of California at Santa Barbara. A Fulbright Fellowship allowed Dr. Rutherford to study and collaborate with well-known Simon Baron-Cohen in Cambridge, England. Dr. Rutherford also worked with Bruce Pennington and Sally Rogers at the University of Denver as a postdoctoral fellow. He now heads a dynamic research laboratory at McMaster University. Dr. Rutherford is well-known for research in the field of psychology and has been interviewed and quoted in The Globe and Mail, The London Times, The Chicago Times, CBC Radio, Quirks and Quarks, and The Discovery Channel as well as many AP newspapers around the world.

Phd Students

Ruth Hofrischter

Ruth Hofrichter

Ruth is interested in the development of animacy perception and cognitive processes involved in processing social cues.

Masters Students

Oliva Jon

Olivia Jon

Olivia studies the perception of emotional facial expressions. She is interested in the top-down influence on aftereffects, and emotion perception strategies in people with and without autism spectrum disorders

Undergraduate Students


Kaushik Baliga

Kaushik is measuring theory of mind development in 7-year-olds and testing to see whether early social orienting predicts later theory of mind development.

Lab Manager


Kristina Minard

Kristina is the lab manager and volunteer coordinator for the lab. She recruits for the Early Autism Study and coordiantes the EAS and other research in the lab.




1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, L8S 4K1
Phone: 905-525-9140, Ext. 26032, Fax: 905-529-6225