Preview of Speakers

We are planning a great program for you March 31 to April 2, 2017.  As always, there will be invited SWPA speakers, an APA sponsored lecture, plus invited symposia organized by our state representatives in the second year of their 2-year term.  Additionally, several of our affiliate organizations will have invited speakers (SAMR, Psi Chi, SCBNA, SWToP), and there will be the traditional President’s talk on Friday afternoon.  Of course, the program will be also filled with a variety of talks and posters by our members.

Theme: Fitting In/Standing Out: The Psychology of Groups

Kipling D. Williams, a Purdue professor of psychological sciences, studies how ostracism hurts individuals as much or even more than a physical injury. His research is reported in the current issue of Current Directions in Psychological Sciences. (Purdue University photo/Mark Simons)

Kip Williams

Purdue University

Ostracism: Consequences and Coping

The effects of ostracism play out in three temporal stages. The first is fairly universal—experiencing pain in response to exclusion or being ignored. The second stage is more varied as the ostracized person strives to cope, with varying strategies and varying success. The third stage occurs with long-term exposure to ostracism: resignation. Resignation is associated with alienation, depression, and helplessness. In this talk, we will explore strategies for preventing entrance into the resignation stage by directing individuals toward more effective, functional coping responses.

Holly Arrow 1

Holly Arrow

University of Oregon

Valuing and devaluing lives in peace and war

Declarations of human rights assert that all human lives have equal value. Our actions, however, reveal a range of positive and negative values.  The outsized importance of self and kin is unsurprising. For people outside immediate in-groups, context, connection, and instrumental value shape our attitudes and actions. We generally value small numbers of people over larger numbers, and meaningful groups over unconnected individuals.  These factors can also intensify the devaluing of life. Research on charitable contributions, accounts of the Rwandan genocide, and US military practices in Vietnam and Iraq illustrate the variable valuing and devaluing of lives in peace and war.



Paul Piff

University of California, Irvine

What is social about social class?

How does your money shape your mind, how you think about yourself and behave toward others? This talk will highlight the emerging psychological science of social class. I will report studies showing that social class exerts a pervasive influence on the social realm, critically shaping the self-concept, emotion, morality, and goals.


Joel Shenker

University of Missouri, Columbia

Broken Social Brains

What would it be like to have no “tone of voice” to convey social meaning? How would social function change after losing voluntary control of facial expressions? When a person stops recognizing social partners, or concludes that a spouse is an imposter, what happens next? Aprosodia, affective prosoplegia, prosopagnosia, and Capgras syndrome are just a few examples of how cases of brain damage unmask some of the tools that make human social life possible.

Bob Morgan 1

Robert Morgan

Texas Tech University

Beyond Pop Culture: The Application of Science in Forensic Psychology

Forensic psychology has taken on “pop-culture” proportions within the larger landscape of psychology. With popular media depicting forensic psychologists as profilers (e.g., Profilers, CSI), increasing numbers of students are drawn to forensic psychology. The real work of forensic psychology science is less dramatic, but has larger impact.  I have conducted forensic evaluations on over 950 criminal defendants and worked with thousands of offenders; but my work as a scientist has facilitated the greatest change. In this talk, I share two examples of how science impacts perceptions and treatment of offenders with mental illness and document fact over ideology related to administrative segregation of offenders. The empirical results may surprise many and emphasize the importance of applying science in the field of forensic psychology.


Kathi Miner

Texas A & M University

Was that an insult? How subtle interpersonal discrimination affects women’s persistence in STEM


Regan A. R. Gurung

University of Wisconsin, Green Bay

Developing healthy study habits: Teachers as fitness trainers of the learning world

SWToP Invited speaker

Annually, millions of Americans resolve to change habits and live healthier. Psychological research helps us understand why behavior change is difficult, but teachers have not capitalized on it to change student study behaviors.  Just as fitness trainers provide motivation and skills to get people to improve health, teachers can similarly be learning trainers for students. This talk reviews literature on habit change from health, social, and cognitive psychology, and translates it for use in the classroom. I highlight key individual differences that impede habit change, and close with an outline of pragmatic steps. By getting students to change study habits, we can truly cultivate learning.

William Revelle 

Northwestern University

Personality research: An open and shared science

SAMR Invited speaker

Personality research is the study of stability and change in how individuals feel, think, and behave over time and space. Given its complexity, it is helpful to use open methods of science to allow for the sharing of data collection and analytic techniques. I discuss three such open projects: the International Personality Item Pool (IPIP) which put personality items into the public domain and is available in numerous languages; the International Cognitive Ability Resource (ICAR) which does the same for ability items; and the open source statistical system, R, which allows researchers to share computer code. I discuss the use of items from IPIP and ICAR, presented on the web using open source software as part of the Synthetic Aperture Personality Assessment project to form large matrices, which can validate personality and ability structures at multiple levels of analysis using open source packages available in R.