​​​​My research agenda focuses on understanding the psychological motivations behind the political attitudes and actions of individuals. To achieve this goal, I investigate how communication, institutions, and leaders shape how the public thinks about politics.  I rely on multiple methods in my research including experiments, surveys, content analyses, and other quantitative analyses. 

My dissertation project, When Gender Matters on the Campaign Trail: Stereotype

Activation & Support for Female Candidates, investigates how and when individuals use

gender stereotypes to evaluate female candidates. I have a number of articles based on this

research including two articles in Political Psychology: "Emotional, Sensitive, and Unfit for

Office: Gender Stereotype Activation and Support for Female Candidates," and, "The Effects

of Counter-Stereotypic Gender Strategies on Candidate Evaluations."

I am also interested in the intersectional nature of stereotypes. I am currently working on

a project on the overlapping nature between partisan and gender stereotypes, and I have a

forthcoming paper in the Journal of Women, Politics, and Policy that examines the

connection between partisanship and gender. Stereotypes about gender also intersect with

stereotypes about different levels of political office, and one of my current projects 

investigates how voters use gender stereotypes in local versus congressional elections.

Another strand of my research investigates the interplay between candidate strategy and how voters perceive female and male candidates. Using both experimental and observational methods, I examine how different types of campaign ads such as negative ads or ads that emphasize feminine traits affect the way voters use feminine stereotypes to evaluate female candidates. My research on the effects of negative ads on voter evaluations of female candidates published with Yanna Krupnikov won the best paper award in Political Behavior for an article published in 2014.

Read recent media coverage of my research here, here, and here