Sample Abstracts

  • The title should be in Title Case. If you aren’t sure how to use Title Case, consult the Chicago Manual of Style or see section 4.15 of the APA Publication Manual (Sixth Edition).
  • Presenting authors are listed first and denoted with asterisks. Non-presenting undergraduate authors are listed next, then graduate authors, then faculty authors. The faculty author here is denoted with their degree.
  • Use your school’s full formal name. Do not list the name of your lab or research center.
  • Your abstract should not contain multiple paragraphs and should not exceed 1200 characters (including spaces). 

Examining the Links between Social Warmth and Physical Warmth 
Brittany Horth* and Naomi Eisenberger, Ph.D. 
University of California, Los Angeles 

Phrases such as “warm the heart” suggest that there may be an inherent relation between social emotions and temperature perception. Thus, positive and negative social experiences (feeling loved, rejected) may cause us to feel warm or cold, respectively. In this study, undergraduates were randomly assigned to write about a time in which they felt a great deal of love, a time in which they felt rejected, or their route to school (control condition). Then participants answered seemingly unrelated questions about their estimate of the room temperature and preferences for hot and cold drinks and foods. We hypothesized that, compared to participants in the control condition, participants who wrote about love would feel warmer—as indexed by higher room temperature estimates and stronger desires for cold drink and food, and participants who wrote about rejection would feel colder—as indexed by lower room temperature estimates and stronger desires for warm drink and food. These analyses extend previous work (Zhong & Leonardelli, 2008), showing that feeling rejected increases cold sensitivity. 


Dehumanizing Women: The Role of Ambivalent Sexism 
Angie Dunn*, Joe Toscano*, Rewbecca Harris and Sarah Gervais, Ph.D. 
University of Nebraska at Lincoln 

Dehumanization has been linked with a myriad of negative outcomes including justification for acts of genocide and rape. Understanding the cognitive process and potential individual factors that may relate to dehumanization then, is an important psychological question. Previous research by Viki and Abrams (2003) suggests that individuals with more sexist attitudes have a higher likelihood to view targets as having more in common with animals than with other humans. Extending this research, the present study examines the relationship between scores on the hostile and benevolent subscales of the Ambivalent Sexism Inventory (ASI; Glick & Fiske, 1996), and an individual’s implicit reaction to dehumanizing words. We hypothesize that those with higher sexism scores will respond faster to dehumanizing words in a lexical decision task than those with lower sexism scores. Use of a lexical decision test replicates previous explicit research while also allowing access to the expected automatic nature of dehumanizing cognitive processes. 


The Effect of Job Stress On Clinical Health Outcomes 
Brett H. Neely, Jr.*; Bridget Reynolds, Ph.D; Rena Repetti, Ph.D; Ted Robles, Ph.D  
University of California, Los Angeles  

Approximately 15-25% of the U.S. working population is classified as high-risk for job stress. This type of stress is known to exert a psychological toll on workers (Repetti & Wang, 2009). However less is known about the impact of job stress on physical health and how current findings translate to clinically relevant outcomes in everyday life, such as susceptibility to the common cold. In an ongoing daily diary study, 68 adults (37 females) completed measures of job stress and upper respiratory infection (URI) symptoms every day for eight weeks. Preliminary analyses show that males who had busier days at work on average also endorsed a greater number of total URI symptoms. Additionally, males who reported lower perceived job security and less supervisor support were sick with upper respiratory infections on more days across the study than were those with greater job security and supervisor support. Among females, endorsing more busy days (whether at home or at work) was associated with greater endorsement of URI symptoms. The findings expand our understanding of links between job stress and immune functioning by elucidating effects on a clinically-relevant health outcome.