Susan J. Rosowski Professor Psychology

Lab site: Subtle prejudice lab


Dr. Gervais has a dual PhD in Psychology and Women's Studies from The Pennsylvania State University. She is an Associate Professor in the Social and Cognitive Psychology and the Law-Psychology programs. Broadly speaking, her research focuses on prejudice and violence. Examining phenomenon like objectification, sexual harassment, and relationship aggression, Dr. Gervais has found that discriminatory and aggressive acts are often more subtle and nuanced than previously thought, but they still have negative social and legal consequences for recipients. Her work has been funded by the National Science Foundation and the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues and has been published in outlets such as the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Psychology of Women Quarterly, Psychological Science, Psychology of Violence, and the Journal of Social Issues. Dr. Gervais has been the recipient of the Gordon Allport Intergroup Relations Prize (APA Div. 9) and the Georgia Babladelis Best Paper Award (APA Div. 35). She has also won the Distinguished Teaching Award and the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She is a former Associate Editor at Psychology of Women Quarterly (2014-2015) and is a current Associate Editor at the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology and British Journal of Social Psychology


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

Representative Publications
  • Gervais, S. J. (2016). A social interaction approach to objectification: Implications for the social-psychological study of sexual violence. In A. Miller (Ed.), The Social Psychology of Good and Evil (pp. 223-245). Guilford Press, NY.
  • Davidson, M. M. & Gervais, S. J. (2015). Violence against women through the lens of objectification theory.  Violence Against Women, 21, 330-354. doi: 10.1177/1077801214568031
  • 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. doi: 10.1111/josi.12084
  • 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. doi: 10.1037/a0033840
  • 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. doi: 10.1007/s11199-013-0316-x
  • 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, 206-221doi: 10.1037/a0028497.
  • Davidson, M. M, Gervais, S. J., Canivez, G. L., & Cole, B. P. (2013). A psychometric examination of the Interpersonal Sexual Objectification Scale among college men. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 60, 239-250. doi: 10.1037/a0032075.
  • Gervais, S. J., Vescio, T. K., & Allen, J. (2012).  When are people interchangeable sexual objects? The effect of gender and body type on sexual fungibility. British Journal of Social Psychology, 51, 499-513. doi: 10.1111/j.2044-8309.2010.02016.x 
  • 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, 469-471doi: 10.1177/0956797611434748. 
  • 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 Psychology88, 658-672.

Research Funding Sources

National Science Foundation. Objectification, Affective Forecasting, and Sexual Harassment (SES-1122683).