Welcome to The Social Automaticity Lab


The Social Automaticity Laboratory seeks to understand the cognitive processes that influence social judgment, behavior, and motivation outside of conscious awareness. Our work investigates these effects from two complementary perspectives. One area of research examines the basic cognitive mechanisms that underlie nonconscious processes. Conceptually, much of this work is summarized by the Situated Inference Model. This theory provides a mechanism for understanding both how and when accessible information will exert an influence on judgment, behavior, and motivation. Our 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 and includes work examining how social forces affect our responses to music and alcohol advertising. We 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 (in collaboration with the CU Social Neuroscience Lab).


Dr. Chris Loersch
BS: Kansas State University (2002)
PhD: Ohio State University (2009)
Hometown: Salina, KS
Shana Stites
Shana R. Stites
BS: University of Kansas (2006)
Hometown: Overland Park, KS
Jairo Ramos
Jairo Ramos
BA: Florida International University (2016)
Hometown: Miami, FL
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Alyssa Spurling
Alyssa Spurling
Lab Manager (2015-2016)
MA: Ball State University (2015)
BA: Hannibal-LaGrange University (2013)
Hometown: O'Fallon, MO
Alyssa Stewart
Undergraduate Honors Student (2015)
Thesis - The Ability of Music to Facilitate Social Bonding during Imagined Intergroup Contact
Qingxin “Cece” Zhang
Undergraduate Honors Student (2014)
Thesis - Music and Belonging
Anna Gitarts
Undergraduate Honors Student (2013)
Thesis - Response Window Length in the Weapon Identification Task: How Executive Function Ability Modulates Implicit Racial Bias


From the UMC 5th floor rooftop terrace...
AY 2016-17
L->R: Alyssa Spurling, Chris Loersch, Shana Stites
AY 2015-16
L->R: Alyssa Spurling, Chris Loersch, Shana Stites