image5


Matt Baldwin

Matt Baldwin

6th year student
Office: Fraser 409
mwbaldwin@ku.edu
http://www.policingequity.org | Personal site

Research Interests: I work primarily with Monica Biernat and Mark Landau, and my interests fall within the broad area of self and identity, and in particular, the cognitive, affective, and individual variables that facilitate people’s attempts to know themselves and make sense of their lives. In one line of research, I am exploring how the personal and collective past influences the self-concept. For example, in a recent paper I find that nostalgia—a sentimental longing for the past—is a window to who people think they really are. In a second and line of research, I am investigating the way that metaphors (e.g., “life is a journey”) subtly influence self-perceptions and meaning in life. I tend to adopt existential and humanistic perspectives in my research.


Mea Benson

Mea Benson

5th year student
Office: Fraser 549
m690b259@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Nyla Branscombe. My interests center broadly around issues concerning the marginalization of disadvantaged groups (from the advantaged-group perspective), the history of institutionalized and systematic oppression, and the built-in, legitimized structures that hold the system constant (e.g., tokenism effect). The areas of research that I am specifically interested in are intergroup relations, individual vs. group-level emotions, and the flexibility of social identity and self-categorization, and how these concepts and their corresponding theories integrate and relate to prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination.


Natasha Bharj

Natasha Bharj

1st year student
Office: Fraser 550

Research Interests: Broadly, my research makes use of postcolonial feminism and intersectional feminist theory to understand racism and sexism, particularly within scientific discourse. One line of my research explores the ways in which psychological science can implicitly reinforce racist and gendered discourse. I am currently engaged in a project that frames evolutionary psychology's use of analogy within its sociocultural and historical context, and explores whether this could implicitly reinforce colonial stereotypes. Another area of research I am interested in is the interaction between gendered racism and perceptions of sexual violence. I am also interested in how psychology as a discipline “does” politics, either through implicitly reinforcing social oppression or through conducting research as a form of activism (as in feminist psychology). 


Thomas Dirth

Thomas Dirth

3rd year student
Office phone: 864-9838
Office: Fraser 550
dirth.thomas@ku.edu

Research Interests: I am interested in the social psychological processes concerning the experience of disability as a social identity as opposed to individualized tragedy. Second, I am interested in the construction of the modern body as a potential source of meaning and control and the impacts this has for expectations for both fitness and disability. FInally, I am interested in approcahing disability from a sociocultural perspective, isloating policies and practices that define what is or is not a difference which should be valued. 


Marina Drus

Marina Drus

4th year student
Office phone:
Office: Fraser 460
mdrus@ku.edu

Research Interests: My interests primarily revolve around cognitive processes, affective processes, motivational factors, and personality aspects involved in political attitudes, prejudice, stereotyping, intergroup relations, preferences for social hierarchy and system justification. I also have a keen interest in exploring unconscious mechanisms that underlie political behavior and ideological predilection.


 

Xian Zhao

Sara Estrada-Villalta

2nd year student
Office: Fraser 550
estradasa@ku.edu

Research Interests: My research is generally focused on the socio-cultural basis of people’s constructions of the self, relationships and social identities, and how those constructions influence processes such as collective action and support for restorative justice policies. I am also interested in the development of critical consciousness in both dominant and subordinate social groups.


 

Claire Gravelin

Claire Gravelin

5th year student
Office: Fraser 409
cgravelin@ku.edu

Research Interests: My research interests focus on rape and other forms of sexual cercion. I am particularly interested in examining the factors within our environment which may perpetuate the tendency to blame victims of sexual assault, and utilize both experimental and field methodology in this exploration. Other lines of research broadly examine stereotyping and prejudice and the perception and treatment of marginalized individuals.


Chris Goode

Chris Goode

5th year student
Office: Fraser 549
C.Goode@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Ludwin Molina and Nyla Branscombe. My research focuses on the roles of pervasive cultural beliefs, social identities and attitudinal norms in the justification and maintenance of inequality. Working within social identity and compensatory control theories, my work explores the ways individuals use culturally dominant ideologies to protect themselves from personal threat and how systematic social inequality affects intergroup relations.


Lucas Keefer    Nader Hakim

2nd Year Student
Office: 549 Fraser
nader.hakim.ku@gmail.com

Research Interests:I'm interested in sociocultural approaches to racism and other forms of oppression. I'm currently working around several questions: How does the way we remember important events shape our attitudes towards different groups? How does thinking about our own and others' social identities influence our behavior? 

These general questions have turned into plans for a couple of specific projects. First, I want to understand how historical representations and collective memory around 9/11 informs our opinions about foreign policy and national identity, among other variables. Second, I want to study the effects of carrying or observing an ambiguous or multiethnic identity, since individuals in those cases don't fit in the neat categories our minds and culture like to place people in. 

 


 

Lucas Keefer

Lucas Keefer

6th Year Student
Office: 444 Fraser
lkeefer1@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Mark Landau. My research focuses on the role of existential psychology in consumer behavior. My recent research draws on attachment theory to explore the role of objects in fulfilling security needs. My other related research interests include Conceptual Metaphor Theory, embodiment, and phenomenological psychology.


Juwon Lee

Juwon Lee

5th year student
Office: Fraser 549
lee@ku.edu

Research interests: My research is focused on the area of close relationships, and I work primarily with Omri Gillath . Some of the topics I’m interested in are: the effects of attachment security priming, the role of context on relationship commitment, attraction, and online relationship processes. I am also interested in sexism and the cultural grounding of relationships.


Ariel Jasmine Mosley

Ariel Jasmine Mosley

1st year student
Office: Fraser 444

Research interests: Broadly, I am interested in processes of stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination as it relates to stigma internalization and threats to existential motivations. Particularly, I am interested in issues of gender identity, and the use of coping mechanisms in response to sexism. Currently, my research is focused on how individuals come to internalize gender stigma by assimilating to and deriving meaning from traditional gender norms and ideologies.  Ultimately, I am interested in examining how systems of inequality are perceived, maintained, and ultimately reduced.


Sahana Mukherhjee

Sahana Mukherjee

6th year student
Office phone: 864-9838
Office: Fraser 550
sahana@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Ludwin Molinaand Glenn AdamsGuided by a cultural psychological perspective, my work explores the ways in which psychological phenomena are grounded in socio-cultural contexts. Among other applications, my research has examined: i) how different spaces (e.g., nation) and representation of history (e.g., museum, history curricula) impact national identitty; ii) how coneptions of national identity operate as tools for action (e.g., support for immigration legislation); and iii) how the teaching of psychology can increase critical consciousness and diversity -relevant goals (e.g., global awareness, social responsibility). A central theme across all my projects is to examine how systems of privilege and oppression are (re) produced via cultural tools, and the psychological phenomena that reduce intergroup conflict and aid in collective action.


Pegah Naemi

Pegah Naemi

1st year student
Office: Fraser 549

Research Interests: My research interests broadly focus on intergroup relations, national identity, and attitudes toward immigration policy. I am particularly interested in how different conceptions of national identity move people to support immigration policies, and how different collective memories and representations of history impact national identity. Generally, I want to explore how systems of privilege aid in intergroup conflict and impact those at the margins of society.


John Sakaluk

John Sakaluk

5th year student
Office: Fraser 549
Personal Website
sakaluk@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Monica Biernat, and also collaborate with Charlene Muehlenhard. My research focuses on exploring implicit social cognition within topics of sexuality and close relationships. Currently, I am using a dual-process approach to understand condom use within an Attachment Theory framework. Specifically, I am interested in examining how attachment security/insecurity impacts implicit and explicit evaluations of condom use.


Nur Soylu

Nur Soylu

3rd year student
Office: Fraser 549

nsoylu@ku.edu

Research Interests: My research interests center around social identity, stereotyping and intergroup relations. One line of research I have been pursuing focuses on how contextual cues differentially influence the experiences of members of disadvantaged and advantaged groups, specifically with regards to gender and socioeconomic status, from a cultural psychology perspective. I am also interested in the construction and intersections of national and ethnic identities, and how these relate to interpersonal and intergroup relations. 


Trevor Swanson

Trevor Swanson

1st year student
Office: Fraser 444

Research Interests: I am interested in exploring the fundamental psychological mechanisms required for agentive experience to occur within human beings, as well as how the advent of language directly facilitates the emergence of this phenomenon. Following this direction, I am focused on understanding the basic elements of human motivation and striving through the lens of existential psychology, with a particular interest in the cognitive factors involved in creativity and how people understand their mortality. Alongside this work, I am focused on the role of conceptual metaphors within language, with an emphasis on how metaphors provide content and structure to our understanding of abstract concepts and thus influence how we perceive the world.


Laura Van Berkel

Laura Van Berkel

4th year student
Office: Fraser 442
vanberkel@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Chris Crandall. My research interests focus broadly on the field of political psychology. Within this domain, I am interested in examining the cognitive processes underlying ideological reasoning. Using various methods, my research has focused on how controlled and automatic thought processing influences how people think about the status quo and hierarchy/equality. I also have a secondary interest in how people think about political leaders as a function of their group membership (e.g., race, gender).


Adrian Villicana

Adrian Villicana

3rd year student
Office: Fraser 550
ajvillicana@ku.edu

Research Interests: I work primarily with Monica Biernat and am interested in stereotyping and prejudice. Specifically, I am interested in how stereotypes affect our evaluation of and behavior toward stereotyped group members, especially group members who have intersecting identities (e.g., gay Latino men). I use intersectionality and shifting standards frameworks to address this interest. I am also interested in the importance of ingroup/outgroup distinctions and the ways in which the social identities we embrace interact with situational factors (e.g., threats to self-esteem, affirmations of group identities) to influence (perceptions of) prejudice.


Mark White

Mark White

1st year student
Office: Fraser 549

Research Interests: I work primarily with Chris Crandall. My research interests broadly focus on prejudice, discrimination, and political psychology. I am interested in social factors that influence people to suppress and justify the expression of prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behaviors. Additionally, I am interested in how these phenomena influence policy.


 

Xian Zhao

Xian Zhao

2nd year student
Office: Fraser 549
zhaoxianpsych@ku.edu

Research Interests:  I work primarily with Monica Biernat, and also collaborate with other faculty. My primary research interest is how stereotypes influence judgment towards individuals from stereotyped groups. This includes topics such as intergroup threat and shifting standards, judgments of competence towards physically attractive females, and the relationship between subjective well-being and prejudice expression. My broader interests cluster around intergroup relations (e.g., race, social class, obesity, and gender) and culture.


 

 



The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, retaliation, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies and is the University’s Title IX Coordinator: the Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.