Professor and Associate Chair Psychology

Lab site: Objectification of Women Lab - OWLab

Research *Dr. Gervais is accepting PhD students for the 2024-2025 academic year. Please apply!

Dr. Gervais (she/her/hers) has a dual PhD in Psychology and Women's Studies from The Pennsylvania State University and currently serves as the Associate Chair in the Department of Psychology at UNL. Her research focuses on sexual objectification, dehumanization, and sexual violence and lies at the intersections of gender, social psychology, the law, and public health. Her work is funded by the National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation and she has over 80 publications. Dr. Gervais also directs the Objectification of Women Lab (OWLab) and trains both PhD graduate students and undergraduates in social psychology. She has been the recipient of the Georgia Babladelis Best Paper Award from the Society for the Psychology of Women as well as the Gordon Allport Intergroup Relations Prize from the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. Dr. Gervais has also be recognized for her mentoring and teaching, receiving the Dean's Award for Excellence in Graduate Education and the Distinguished Teaching Award from UNL. She is past Associate Editor of Psychology of Women Quarterly, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, and British Journal of Social Psychology. Dr. Gervais regularly presents her research to scholarly audiences and the public.


Dr. Gervais teaches courses in social cognition, social psychology, applied social psychology, and psychology of gender.

Representative Publications
  • Gervais, S. J., Baildon, A., Lorenz, T. (2021). On methods and marshmallows: A roadmap for science that is openly feminist and radically open. Psychology of Women Quarterly. doi: 10.1177/03616843211032632

  • Baildon, A., Eagan, S., Christ, C., Lorenz, T., Stoltenberg, S., & Gervais, S. J. (2021). The sexual objectification and alcohol use link: The mediating roles of self-objectification, enjoyment of sexualization, body shame, and drinking motives. Sex Roles. doi: 10.1007/s11199-020-01213-

  • Riemer, A., Saez, G., Brock, R., & Gervais, S. J. (2020). Self-fulfilling objectification in relationships: The effects of men’s objectifying expectations on women’s self-objectification during conflict in romantic relationships. Self and Identity. doi: 10.1080/15298868.2020.1778518

  • Brock, R., Ramsdell, E., Saez, G., & Gervais, S. J. (2020). Perceived humanization by intimate partners during pregnancy is associated with fewer depressive symptoms, less body dissatisfaction, and greater sexual objectification through reduced self-objectification. Sex Roles. doi: 10.1007/s11199-020-01166-6

  • Gervais, S. J., Riemer, A., Sáez, G., & Klein, O. (2020). The social interaction model of objectification: A process model of goal-based objectifying exchanges between men and women. British Journal of Social Psychology, 59, 248-283.
  • Gervais, S. J., Allen, J., Riemer, A., & Gullickson, M. (2019). A balanced objectification theory: Using balance theory predict source sentiment based on valence and body sentiment. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 45, 571-586.
  • Gervais, S. J., Davidson, M. M., Canivez, G., Styck, K., & DiLillo, D. (2018). The development and psychometric properties of the Interpersonal Sexual Objectification Scale – Perpetration Version. Psychology of Violence, 8, 546-559.
  • Bernard, P., Gervais, S. J., & Klein, O. (2018). Objectifying objectification: When and why individuals are cognitively perceived similarly to objects. European Review of Social Psychology, 29, 82-121.
  • Roberts, T., Calogero, R. M., & Gervais, S. J. (2018). Objectification theory: Continuing contributions to feminist psychology. In C. B. Travis, J. W. White, A. Rutherford, W. S. Williams, S. L. Cook, … K. F. Wyche (Eds.), APA handbook of the psychology of women: History, theory, and battlegrounds (pp. 249-271). Washington, DC, US: American Psychological Association.
  • Bernard, P., Rizzo, T., Hoonhorst, I., Deliens, G., Gervais, S. J., Eberlen, J., Bayard, C.,Deltenre, P., Colin, C., & Klein, O. (2018). The neural correlates of cognitive objectification: An ERP study on the body-inversion effect associated with sexualized bodies. Social Psychology and Personality Science, 9, 550-559.
  • Gervais, S. J., Wiener, R. Allen, J., Farnum, K., & Kimble, K. (2016). Do you see what I see? The consequences of objectification in work settings for experiencers and third party predictors. Analysis of Social Issues and Public Policy, 16, 143-174.
  • Davidson, M. M. & Gervais, S. J. (2015). Violence against women through the lens of objectification theory. Violence Against Women, 21, 330-354.
  • Gervais, S. J. & Hillard, A. (2014). Confronting sexism as persuasion: Effects of a confrontation's recipient, source, message, and context. Journal of Social Issues, 70, 653-667.
  • Gervais, S. J., DiLillo, D. & McChargue, D. (2014). Understanding the link between men’s alcohol use and sexual violence: The mediating role of sexual objectification. Psychology of Violence, 4, 156-169.
  • Gervais, S. J., Holland, A., & Dodd, M. (2013). My eyes are up here: The nature of the objectifying gaze toward women. Sex Roles, 69, 557-570.
  • Gervais, S. J. (Ed.). (2013). Objectification and (De)Humanization. New York, NY: Springer.
  • Wiener, R., Gervais, S. J., Allen, J., & Marquez, A. (2013). In the eye of the beholder: Effects of perspective and sexual objectification on harassment judgments. Psychology, Public Policy, and the Law, 19, 206-221.
  • Bernard, P., Gervais, S. J., Allen, J., Campomizzi, S. & Klein, O. (2012). Integrating sexual objectification with object versus person recognition: The sexualized body-inversion hypothesis. Psychological Science, 23, 469-471.
  • Gervais, S. J. Vescio, T. K., & Allen, J. (2011). When what you see is what you get: The consequences of the objectifying gaze for women and men. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 35, 5-17. doi: 10.1177/0361684310386121.
  • Vescio, T. K., Gervais, S. J., & Snyder, M., Hoover, A. (2005). Power and the creation of patronizing environments: The stereotype-based behaviors of the powerful and their effects on female performance in masculine domains. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 88, 658-672.

Click here for full list of publications.

Research Funding Sources

National Institutes of Health. Promoting prosocial bystander behavior in intoxicated men: Evaluation of RealConsent2.0 (R01 AA029450, Principal Investigator). 2022-2026 (Active).

National Institutes of Health. RCT of a combined MI intervention to address bystander behaviors in the context of alcohol use (R01 AA027517, Site Principal Investigator). 2019-2024 (Active).

National Institutes of Health. Integrating alcohol myopia and objectification to understand sexual assault (RO1 AA025090, Principal Investigator). 2018-2022 (Active).

National Science Foundation. COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH: Jurors’ use of scientific information (SES-1733957, Principal Investigator). 2017-2020 (Completed).

National Institutes of Health. Intervention to promote pro-social bystander behaviors (R21 HD092807, Principal Investigator). 2018-2020 (Completed).

National Science Foundation. Interpersonal interaction, affective forecasting, and harassment in the workplace (SES-1122683, CoPrincipal Investigator). 2011-2016 (Completed).