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Social Psychology

Photograph of Lisa Ross, Ph.D.

Dr. Lisa Thomson Ross

My primary research interest revolves around the sources, correlates and consequences of unpredictability (e.g., family chaos, environmental instability, unpredictability beliefs). My secondary research area concerns common struggles of college students, including alcohol misuse, sexual risk-taking, and mental health issues. Typically, students working with me gain experience with investigating and summarizing existing literature, survey administration, data management and analysis, and writing up empirical findings.


Photograph of Rhonda Swickert, Ph.D.

Dr. Rhonda Swickert

My research interests are focused on factors that promote well-being. My most recent work has examined how the process of mindful awareness could enhance our ability to be more empathic, grateful, and forgiving, which are all factors that are very important in promoting happiness. I am also interested in how people learn and grow from weathering aversive events.

The protocol that I use to study mindfulness involves invoking a state of mindfulness in a laboratory environment and measuring its influence on processes such as forgiveness. This research is important because it serves to highlight factors within ourselves that we can cultivate to improve our own happiness and well-being. Students that work with me will have the opportunity to design experiments, collect data, analyze data and learn how to effectively communicate empirical findings.


Photograph of Rhonda Swickert, Ph.D.

Dr. Chelsea Reid

I am a social psychologist who studies close relationships and the self. My research interests are underlain by the notion that people strive to form and maintain relationships, and it’s important to understand what individuals can do to help create relationships and keep them intact. My primary focus has been the role of attitude alignment (shifting your attitudes to more closely match the attitudes of a partner) in relationship formation and maintenance, but I also conduct research in the areas of relationship transgressions and forgiveness as well as nostalgia.

Students who work with me can expect to gain first-hand experience in designing studies, leading participants through experimental sessions, coding and entering participant data, analyzing and interpreting participant data, conducting literature reviews, and presenting research at the local, regional, or national level.