Lambert Behavioral Neuroscience Laboratory
Randolph-Macon College Logo Link
Randolph-Macon College


New Book:

Biological Psychology


Blending classic scholarship with exciting new developments in the discipline, Biological Psychology offers a fresh perspective on the brain's interaction with its environment.


*A compelling storytelling approach makes the content accessible and exciting to students.

*Behavioral neuroscience mysteries in Brain Scene Investigation features engage students at the beginning of each chapter.

*Laboratory Explorations features integrate research techniques as a part of each chapter so that students can see how different methods apply to various types of research questions. 

*Context Matters features present detailed accounts of research studies in order to demonstrate the varying effects that contextual variables have on specific dependent variables. 

*Clinical applications provide real-life examples of the neurobiological processes and behaviors discussed in each chapter.

Praise for Biological Psychology

“Students will learn more from this text than others based upon its style of case studies, anecdotes, and laboratory explorations that all integrate into clear concepts for the introductory level biopsychologist.”
—Lorenz S. Neuwirth, SUNY Old Westbur

“Something very refreshing about this book is its emphasis on cross-cultural research findings which make the book all the more appealing and applicable to a diverse range of students as well as readers.”
—Neelam Rattan, San Jose State University

Learn more about the textbook, Biological Psychology by Kelly Lambert

The Lab Rat Chronicles

Release Date: June 7, 2011

Praise for The Lab Rat Chronicles

“Witty, wise, and down-to-earth,  Kelly Lambert teaches us much about ourselves by letting her rats do the talking. By understanding the fundamentals of brain function in rats, we can see reflections of human nature.  Lambert is a spellbinding story-teller, and in finest form, she tells us her favorite brain stories, provoking new insight into ourselves.”
—Patricia Churchland, Professor Emerita, Philosophy Department, UCSD, and author of Braintrust

“Lambert’s book does for the brain and animal behavior what Julia Child did for cooking.  She takes the arcane, hard-to-digest material one usually finds in academic neuroscience journals and renders it into a delectable concoction.  Funny, clever, and engaging, Lambert shows that doing good science is both important and fun. ”
—Craig Kinsley, PhD, Professor of Neuroscience, Dept. of Psychology, University of Richmond, coauthor of Clinical Neuroscience

“In this very interesting book, Kelly Lambert does a terrific job of explaining to a nonscientific audience what deep matters can be explored by clever experiments on a by-no-means simple animal.”
—Peter Sterling, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

“A best-kept secret of brain science is that laboratory rats and mice have told us as much, perhaps more, about our basic nature than the study of humans.   Kelly Lambert gracefully shares the saga of how the study of these fascinating, friendly, and curious animals has illuminated the psychological complexity of rat nature that can now inform us about our own minds and habits.”
—Jaak Panksepp, Baily Endowed Professor of Animal Well-Being Science College of Veterinary Medicine Washington State University, and author of The Archaeology of Mind

“Kelly Lambert elevates the rat, the selfsame creature who bedevils subways and dark alleys, to our indespensible doppelganger.  Linking her experience in the trenches of rat research with the issues that challenge her own family, Kelly Lambert illustrates how Rattus norvegicus has enlightened us on everything from work to play, courtship, child rearing, and addiction. If man ever gets a second-best friend, it should be the rat.”
—Hannah Holmes, author of The Well-Dressed Ape and Quirk

Kirkus Review of The Lab Rat Chronicles:
A neuroscientist burrows down deep into the lives of rats and emerges with clues to model human behavior. The most successful mammals on the planet have already contributed much to the field of scientific research, but Lambert insists that there’s still plenty to learn from them. In this jauntily written examination of the lives of the lowly lab rat, she suggests that we would do well to emulate the prodigious achievements of our mammalian cousins—and the first steps just might be to fire the maid, ditch the Lexus and start getting our hands dirty. Rats, Lambert writes, are blue-collar creatures who owe much of their happiness to an unambiguous work ethic. Deprived of this, they soon begin to exhibit the same tell-tale signs of anxiety, frustration and depression now afflicting so many among our cushy Western culture. Unlike humans, however, the rats studied here are more likely to beat the blues with a spin on the exercise wheel than by downing a synthetic drug. It’s a radical prescription, indeed, with potentially far-reaching effects on how we live, work and play. Wrinkle your nose if you must, but the “whisker wisdom” these rodents display in their quest for survival is tough to dismiss. If the author is right, the caged lab rat could provide humans with the means of escaping the workaday prisons so many currently inhabit.
Built on solid scientific research, a rodent tale both fascinating and entertaining.

Previous Book: Clinical Neuroscience

Clinical Neuroscience informs students of relevant neurobiological foundations of various mental illnesses. In this book, students will begin their journey with a tour of the brain's fundamental building blocks (neuroanatomy, neurochemistry, neurophysiology, neurodevelopment) before moving to mental health challenges and illnesses (Traumatic brain injury, Parkinson's Disease, Addiction, Schizophrenia, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Depression). The final section of the book includes chapters addressing topics thought to be important for building resilience against the emergence of mental illness; these chapters cover the topics of adaptive coping strategies, hunger regulation, and the nexus between mental and immune functions. Throughout the text, the value of empirical evidence is emphasized so that meaningful progress can be made toward the identification of the most effective treatment strategies. By understanding multiple neurobiological perspectives such as neuroanatomical, behavioral, evolutionary, and neurochemical approaches currently existing in the field, students will be better prepared to conceptualize the relevant components of these mental health puzzles. Features such as opening chapter vignettes (Connections), case studies (A Case in Point) and feature boxes (Brain Matters) illuminate the course content for students as they learn about the value of translational research.  

Previous Book: Lifting Depression

In this fascinating exploration of depression, neuroscientist Kelly Lambert highlights her groundbreaking research suggesting that important clues to the mysteries of this disease have been in our hands all along. She identifies a circuit in the human brain—connecting movement, feeling, and cognition—that is responsible for symptoms of depression, and shows that when we knit a sweater, prepare a meal, or simply repair a lamp, we’re actually bathing our brain in “feel-good” chemicals. Highlighting inspiring accounts of change and growth, Lifting Depression offers a compassionate and commonsense way of preventing and treating one of the modern era’s most debilitating diseases.


Reviews of Lifting Depression

Katherine Ellison, author of The Mommy Brain
“Kelly Lambert’s cutting-edge research on depression is innovative, original and deeply inspiring. I strongly recommend Lifting Depression for anyone suffering from mood and stress disorders and all who seek a better understanding of these troubling diseases.”

Christopher R. Martell, Ph.D., ABPP, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Department of Psychology, University of Washington; co-author, Depression in Context, Overcoming Depression One Step at a Time, and The Myth of Depression as Disease
“In this exciting and invigorating new book, Kelly Lambert presents a compelling proposition: that our highly technological society may in fact be increasing the rates of depression. Her suggestion for coping by increasing effort-based rewards is elegantly straightforward and consistent with emerging research in major clinical trials. Lifting Depression will help people suffering from the crippling impact of this disorder, and it is essential reading for all who want a full understanding of the biological and social aspects of depression beyond the popular sound bites about chemical imbalances and pills.”

Library Journal
“Drawing from fields as diverse as evolutionary psychology, child development, neurobiology, and psychopharmacology, the author creates a compelling case for her theory of the effort-driven rewards circuit in the brain as the central explanatory mechanism.”

Midwest Book Review
“Wide-ranging and important, recommended for both health libraries and general-interest lending collections alike…Lifting Depression is a solid move to individual freedom.”

Frank Forencich, author of Exuberant Animal: The Power of Health, Play and Joyful Movement
“Kelly Lambert offers us a comprehensive and compelling view of health that is holistic, practical and visionary. Her work on the efforts-based rewards system not only explains much of our modern discontent, it also offers a path to vitality and exuberance. This book will not only change our views on depression, it will transform our understanding of our bodies and our predicament in the modern world.”
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.