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Nancy Zingrone / Profile

Asst Prof of Research, Div Perceptual Studies, Dept Psychiatry | Faculty

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I have a visiting faculty member appointment in the Division of Perceptual Studies in the Department of Psychiatry at UVA. My husband, Dr. Carlos S. Alvarado, has the same appointment with the Division. While on site at UVA ur research centered on personality correlates of experiencers of seemingly psychic phenomena, especially the out-of-body experience. Our personal educational projects center on providing education for students/young researchers in our subspecialty both F2F, online (using Moodle and WizIQ) and in Second Life. These activities are described here: We now also hold appointments at Atlantic University in Virginia Beach where I am the Director of Academic Affiars and my husband is the Scholar in Residence. Atlantic University provides a personal enrichment masters and a number of related continuing and professional education courses delivered in the distance education format (going totally online for the January 2011 semester), and accredited through the Distance Education and Training Council.

Current Focus

My husband, Dr. Carlos S. Alvarado, and I, focus in our research on personality correlates of seemingly psychic experiences. We currently hold between us four small grants funding this research and have one UVA IRB approved random and web-based survey in progress, with four other interconnected projects in the development stage. We pursue this research as part-time Assistant Profs of Research in the Division of Perceptual Studies in the Department of Psychiatry. We have collaborated on a number of articles published both in specialty and in mainstream psychology and psychiatry journals.

Our second main activity is a project that we run through our sideline consulting business, Alvarado Consulting. The project is: The AZIRE (The Alvarado Zingrone Institute for Research and Education, We have for some months been developing a variety of educational opportunities for students and young researchers in our sub-specialty including a Virtual College Fair, an online course using Moodle and WizIQ to debut in the spring of 2010, various face to face lectures and adult education courses (three of the latter scheduled at PVCC in the late Spring), and through educational builds in the virtual world, Second Life. These are: The AZIRE Learning Center located in the Chilbo Community in Second Life and The AZIRE Library located on Innovation Info Island in Second Life. The former contains slideshows, informational notecards, a YouTube viewer, recommended books, and links to researchers and websites. The latter is in development and when finished will include links to freely available articles and full-text books in English, Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese and German, focusing on our sub-specialty and on the psychology of experience and belief in general.

Future Goals

Our future goal is to continue obtaining funding for our research, to continuing publishing articles, book chapters and books, presenting and so on. We feel that the stigma attached to the academic study of seemingly psychic phenomena has unnecessarily suppressed research on the psychological health and well-being of individuals who claim to experience these phenomena. Our research, we hope, not only contributes to a basic understanding of the way in which the experiences flow from, interact with and shape the personalities of the experiencers, but also to the legitimization of this type of research as well.

In education, our future goals are to continue to expand the online, virtual world and F2F programs of The AZIRE that are pertinent to our subscpecialty, as well as to participate in the reshaping of college and university educational practices in the social sciences and other disciplines. Our philosophy for all of our activities focuses on collaboration across geographic and language barriers.


I have been engaged in research in my subspecialty for nearly 30 years. I have taught psychology at the community college level; taught adult education in my subspecialty intermittently for the same period. My degrees are in psychology (BA, PhD) and community college education with psychology as a teaching specialty (MSEd). I was also admitted to Doctoral Candidacy at Duke University in 1990, qualifying in the histories of science, psychiatry and medicine before withdrawing to return to psychology. My husband and I have collaborated on research for more than 25 years. Individually, he also specializes in the histories of psychology, psychiatry and psychical research and I have done some work on the history and psychology of science using my the materials of my subspecialty as the focus. We were attached to the Division of Perceptual Studies as “volunteer” adjunct faculty from 2003 through 2008, and are now grants-based part-time paid faculty at the same Unit. I have also worked at a not-for-profit educational foundation in NYC, at our own research institute in Puerto Rico, and at a private research center in Durham, North Carolina. Prior to that I also taught adult education courses in the community college system in Chicago, and psychology and statistics at Northeastern Illinois University as an adjunct. I have also had experience in academic admin (as an Assistant Registrar and an assistant to the director of Student Accounts) at Mundelein College in Chicago (now part of Loyola University), and have owned a teeny tiny publishing services company since 1988 ( with three titles in print at the moment, and three more in progress.


Interested in the psychology of seemingly psychic experiences; have contributed to the literatures on asborption, dissociation and depersonalization, as well as on out-of-body and near-death experiences, apparitions and “aura” vision experiences to which the experiencers attribute paranormality. For the last several decades I have conducted mainly questionnaire research on these topics, have recently completed a random survey and have another one in progress. Research wise my husband and colleague, Dr. Carlos S. Alvarado (also at the Division of Perceptual Studies at UVA) and I are working on developing an OBE scale along the lines of Dr Bruce Greyson’s NDE scale. Also interested in providing educational opportunities for individuals with an interest in the psychology of experience and belief; and in publishing in psychology in general and the psychology of anomalous experiences in particular. In education I am very interested in online/distance learning and learning practices in virtual worlds.

Scholarly Disciplines
psychical research (1), psychology (1), psychology of experience (1)
General Interests
Educational Technology (3), History of Science (2), psychology (2)
Time Periods of Interest
Nineteenth century (4), early 20th (2)
Places of Interest
Europe (3), Latin America (2), United Kingdom (1)
Technologies of Interest
Moodle (1), OSGrid (1), ReactionGrid (1), Second Life (1), digital databases (4), on-line teaching (2), statistical analysis (2), virtual environments (1)


Not a member of any organizations.


Information about my current research is available on my UVA home page and on and



Publications are available on my UVA homepage and on


Primary info on my UVA homepage and on; and on Second Life (search “AZIRE” in all in the Search engine to find The AZIRE Learning Center in the Chilbo Community and The AZIRE Library on Innovation Info Island)


primarily using, Second Life, Moodle including our own Moodle site under construction, WikiSpaces/WikiEducator, Yahoo Site Builder, Facebook, Twitter. taking webinars from the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) and using their resources and those of the Virginia Society for Technology in Education (VSTE) for educational professional development both online and in Second Life; update website content for clients through their own website management systems; also use Adobe InDesign, PaintShop Pro, CuteFTP, CoffeeCup, Quickbooks, MS Office, Stat Pac, SPSS, Survey Monkey, basic HTML etc.


member of the American Psychological Association since 1984; recent member of ISTE and VSTE; other professional activites on CV on UVA home page



  • Assistant Professor of Research, Division of Perceptual Studies, Department of Psychiatry
  • Co-founder, The AZIRE (The Alvarado Zingrone Institute for Research and Education)
  • Co-founder, Puente Publications


  • B.A., psychology, Mundelein College
  • MSEd. community college teaching with psychology as a teaching specialty, Northern Illinois Univesrity
  • Doctoral candidacy, histories of science, psychiatry, medicine and American Society history, Duke University
  • Ph.D., psychology, University of Edinburgh


  • American Psychological Association
  • International Society for Technology in Education
  • Virginia Society for Techology in Education


survey research management and analysis; basic database construction/management (basic MS Office variety); page composition using InDesign primarily; rudimentary site building/HTML coding; Spanish to English translation; Second Life web-based content construction, newcomer mentoring and community volunteerism; statistical analyses using Statpaq, SPSS; APA compliant editing; scholarly indexing; social networking; use of online web-conferencing; event planning; publications management; basic social networking (Facebook, Twitter etc); scholarly writing; teaching/presentation skills; currently learning Moodle, Wikispaces/WikiEducator

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