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Personality and Social Norms Research Group

Habarth Research Group: Personality and Social Norms

Janice Habarth, Ph.D.


The Personality & Social Norms lab is a team of researchers, led by Dr. Jan Habarth, focused on socially normative attitudes and beliefs.  Our projects are inspired by several areas of scholarship, including gender and women's studies, personality psychology, cultural competence among healthcare providers, and the scientific study of sexual orientation and gender diversity.  Most of our projects focus on how personality and social demographic variables can help us to better understand and predict attitudes about gender and sexual orientation.  We also share interests in stigma, marginalization, and minority stress.  Commonly examined constructs in lab include tolerance of ambiguity, openness to experience, heteronormative attitudes and beliefs, sexual and gender minority stress, gender roles, and a range of outcomes such as couple functioning, mental health, and life satisfaction.   

Current lab members have presented at national conferences and are contributing towards the development of manuscripts under review for publication.  Recent topics have included 1) relationship satisfaction and heteronormativity among same-sex and heterosexual couples; 2) attitudes about sexual fluidity and bisexuality; and 3) attitues about transgender and wrongfully convicted populations in forensic settings.

Each year, we welcome new lab contributers from among the clinical psychology doctoral student body at PAU.  New members commonly develop their dissertation project by the end of their third doctoral training year and often contribute to new data collection, data analysis projects, conference proposals, and/or preparation of empirical manuscripts for publication.  Projects envisioned over the next few years include:

    1) Trans and gender nonbinary competancies among healthcare providers

    2) Femanist attitudes, identities, and psychological well-being

    3) Mindfulness and personality-based prejudice reduction studies; and

    4) Intersecting identities as they relate to experiences of marginalization, minority stress, and socially normative attitudes

Desirable characteristics and goals for doctoral students in our lab include interest in our core research content as well as an interest in any of the following:

    • contributing to ongoing research on prejudice, including attitudes about sexual orientation and gender

    • supporting new data collection efforts, including senior student dissertations

    • conducting literature reviews to support new study and IRB proposal development

    • contributing to publications and posters

    • developing skills and confidence regarding statistical analysis

We are an active, collaborative research lab.  We meet several times each month (usually weekly) to discuss research projects as well as broader topics related to professional development.  

For additional information, please contact Dr. Habarth and/or lab coordinators Mariah Beltran or Darin Witkovic:





1791 Arastradero Road
Palo Alto, CA 94304

Phone: (800) 818-6136 Fax: (650) 433-3888





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