HERE Center

Our Center Researchers

Thomas Chan, PhD - Psychology

Faculty Cluster

Thomas Chan Profile

Telephone: 818-677-4818

Office: Lilac Hall, Room 108





I grew up in a Chinese Restaurant and was raised by my two grandmothers. When I experienced the painful consequences when one of my grandmother’s health rapidly deteriorated after she fell—it spurred my mission to produce work that improves the lives of aging adults and their families.

I spent my career gaining expertise on the developmental (e.g., aging, enrichment, mentoring), motivational (e.g., flow, purpose), and neuropsychological (e.g., prefrontal cortex, amygdala) factors that influence aging adults to live healthier and more fulfilling lives. Through these experiences, I saw how “designing technology for good,” was transformative in being a scalable medium to promote positive human development, health, and flourishing.





  • Moored, K.D., Chan, T., Varma, V.R., Chuang, Y., Parisi, J.M., & Carlson, M.C. (2018). Engagement in Enriching Early Life Activities is Associated with Larger Hippocampal and Amygdala Volumes in Community-Dwelling Older Adults. Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences.
  • Chan, T., Parisi, J.M., Moored, K.D., & Carlson, M.C. (2018). Variety of enriching early life activities linked to late life cognitive functioning in urban community-dwelling African Americans. Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences.
  • Nakamura, J., & Chan, T. (in press). Positive aging from a lifespan perspective. In Handbook of Positive Psychology (3rd edition).
  • Fruiht, V., & Chan, T. (2018). Naturally occurring mentorship in a national sample of first-generation college goers: a potential portal for academic and developmental success. American Journal of Community Psychology.
  • Chan, T., Kyere, K., Davis, B.R., Shemyakin, A., Kabitzke, P., Shair, H., Barr, G.A., & Wiedenmayer, C.P. (2011). The role of the medial prefrontal cortex in innate fear regulation in infants, juveniles, and adolescents. Journal of Neuroscience, 31(13), 4991-4999.

Research Projects