Independent Minds, Working Together

Faculty at Large Lecture on March 5 to Examine Human Interaction and Perception

Amber Garcia, associate professor of psychology, to speak on March 5

February 22, 2013 by John Finn

WOOSTER, Ohio — Amber Garcia, associate professor of psychology at The College of Wooster, will present “The Story of Them: Examining Factors that Influence Perceptions of Dyads” at the second Faculty at Large lecture of the spring semester on Tuesday, March 5. The address, which is free and open to the public, begins at 11 a.m. in Lean Lecture Room of Wishart Hall (303 E. University St.).

Garcia will discuss human perception of individuals based on the relationships they maintain. “People are able to form complex and stable impressions of an individual's personality and beliefs based on direct interaction or second-hand information gained about that person,” said Garcia. “Little research, however, has examined how impressions of a person are influenced by the relationships they maintain. My talk will focus on cognitive and emotional responses to different types of dyadic relationships — relationships involving two people — with an emphasis on the romantic.”

Garcia’s topic is relevant to everyone because people encounter one another and form impressions on a daily basis. “I think it's interesting and valuable to explore the factors that go into forming impressions,” she said. “These impressions can influence future beliefs and behaviors.”

A member of Wooster’s faculty since 2006, Garcia specializes in social psychology (with an emphasis on multicultural ideology), prejudice and discrimination, intergroup emotions, and impression formation. She received a B.A. from St. Mary’s College of California (1996), an M.A. from Claremont College (2000), and a Ph.D. from Purdue University (2005). She is a member of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, and the American Psychological Association.

The next Faculty at Large lecture will be on Tuesday, April 2, when R. Drew Pasteur, assistant professor of mathematics at Wooster, presents “From Box Scores to Moneyball: A History of Statistical Analysis in Professional Sports.”

Additional information about the Faculty at Large lecture series is available by phone (330-263-2576) or e-mail.