Social psychology concerns itself with the effects of other people on the individual as well as with interaction between persons. Personality psychology is concerned with the ways individuals perceive, act upon, and understand their respective worlds as they seek to establish adaptive life modes.
As our area name implies, the research conducted in the joint Social-Personality area represents an integration of personality and social psychology, not only in terms of the types of questions S-P faculty ask (e.g., What are the specific situations that elicit negative emotions? What kinds of individuals tend to react particularly strongly to these elicitors?) but also in the methods we use.
Most research conducted in our labs brings together tightly controlled laboratory experiments that isolate causal mechanisms with cross-sectional and longitudinal studies that look at psychological processes as they unfold naturally in people’s everyday lives and across time.
We also examine psychological processes and outcomes at multiple levels of analysis, at the behavioral, experiential, and physiological levels. We have strengths in the following research domains:
(1) Self, identity, and culture (Ayduk, Chen, John, Mendoza-Denton)
(2) Social cognition (Chen, Ayduk, Mendoza-Denton)
(3) Emotion, emotion regulation & affective neuroscience (Ayduk, John, Keltner, Mauss)
(4) Personality processes and adult development (Ayduk, John, Mauss)
(5) Relationships and intergroup processes (Ayduk, Chen, Mendoza-Denton)
(6) Power, hierarchy, and social class (Chen, Keltner, Mendoza-Denton)