Dr. Loersch is interested in the cognitive processes that influence social judgment, behavior, and motivation outside of conscious awareness. His laboratory investigates these effects from two complementary perspectives. The first examines the basic cognitive mechanisms that underlie nonconscious processes. This approach is summarized by the Situated Inference Model, a theory that provides a novel mechanism for understanding how and when accessible information will exert an influence on judgment, behavior, and motivation. The second area of work is focused on understanding the overarching social influences that have shaped these nonconscious processes. This research examines the various ways that belonging to social groups influences behavior outside of conscious awareness. The lab also examine the impact of alcohol consumption on the mental processes that produce the above effects and the neural underpinnings of these processes as measured by event-related brain potentials.
attitudes, social cognition, automaticity, consciousness, human musicality
PSYC 2606 - Social Psychology
Fall 2018 / Spring 2019 / Spring 2020
Covers general psychological principles underlying social behavior. Analyzes major social psychological theories, methods, and topics, including attitudes, conformity, aggression, attraction, social perception, helping behavior, and group relations.
PSYC 5606 - Proseminar: Social-Personality Psychology
Provides a thorough introduction to methods and theories in social psychology concerned with topics such as the self, social cognition, judgment and decision making, attitude formation and change, small group processes, inter-group relations, health and social psychology, and others. May be repeated up to 12 total credit hours. Instructor consent required.
PSYC 6606 - Professional Issues in Social Psychology
Fall 2019 / Spring 2020
Covers a range of topics important for professional development in social psychology, including preparation and delivery of research presentations, preparation of grant proposals and manuscripts, and peer review of manuscripts. Intended to prepare students for careers as research scientists. May be repeated up to 6 total credit hours.