Research

Welcome to the Embodied Social Cognition Lab at the University of Toronto Scarborough. Research conducted in ESC examines the multiple modes of input that humans use when perceiving, cognitively representing, and predicting the social world. Peruse the People and Publications pages of this website to discover what makes ESC tick.

Research Themes

Research at the Embodied Social Cognition Lab examines the way information from the social environment is processed and applied in social interactions. Subsumed by this high-level theme are many specific areas of interest, particularly within the intergroup domain. Some key questions that are asked through research in ESC include:

  • How do close cross-group relationships affect social interactions with novel outgroup members?
  • Do media representations of intergroup relations affect daily intergroup interactions and health symptomatology?
  • How do intergroup expectations and attitudes relate to stress and health?
  • How are cognitive resources spent in social interactions?
  • Which modes of social stimuli carry the most weight in person perception: auditory and verbal stimuli, visual stimuli and nonverbal behaviour, cognitive representations, explicit attitudes and expectations, or physiological and neuroendocrine responses?
  • What factors predict when people of different generations will confront intergenerational prejudice?

Funding

The Embodied Social Cognition Laboratory is funded by grants awarded to Elizabeth Page-Gould from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation, and the Connaught Fund, and startup funds from the University of Toronto. These institutions and agencies each support distinct aspects of the infrastructure, operational costs, and specific research projects of the Embodied Social Cognition Lab.

Chad Danyluck is independently funded as a doctoral fellow of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and Amanda Sharples is independently funded through a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Masters Canada Graduate Scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

The research projects of the undergraduate thesis students and supervised study students are independently funded by grants-in-aid from the University of Toronto Scarborough Psychology Department.