Parker, Michael

Assistant Professor
MRC 540


  • Ph.D. Social Psychology, Minor: Quantitative Methods, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • M.S. Social Psychology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • B.S. Double Major in Psychology and Communication, University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point

Research Interests

  •  My primary research interests lie at the intersection of moral judgment and social identity. Specifically, I focus on how group identities are formed based on moral judgments, and additionally how these identities enable perceptions of threat, outgroup essentialism, and derogation. I also have conducted research on the factors that influence stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination based on racial and ethnic identity. Understanding cognitive and motivational factors that increase bias as well as testing interventions that decrease bias are key goals of this work.
  • My secondary interests relate to quantitative methodology and data analysis in psychological research. Recently many psychologists have questioned the replicability of psychological research. I believe better practices in the way we analyze our data can improve the reputation of psychology through ensuring we make proper conclusions based on our data. In this area of scholarship, I advocate against the use of statistical tests which are unnecessary or which inhibit the advancement of social psychological theory (i.e., variable centering in OLS regression, mediated moderation tests).

Recent Publications and Presentations

  • Steele, R. R., Parker, M.T., & Lickel, B. (2015). Bias within because of threat from outside: The effects of an external call for terrorism on anti-Muslim attitudes in the United States. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 6, 193-200.
  • Yogeeswaran, K., Adelman, L., Parker, M.T., & Dasgupta, N. (2014). In the eyes of the beholder: White Americans' national indentification predicts differential reactions to ethnic identiy expressions. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 20, 362-369.
  • Parker, M. T., & Janoff-Bulman, R. (2013). Lessons from morality-based social identity: The power of outgroup "hate," not just ingroup "love." Social Justice Research, 26, 81-96.
  • Janoff-Bulman, & Parker, M.T. (2012). Moral bases of public distrust: Politics, partisanship, and compromise. In R. Kramer & T. Pittinsky (Eds.), Restoring Trust in Organizations and Leaders: Enduring Challenges and Emerging Answers: NY: Oxford University Press.
  • Yogeeswaran, K., Dasgupta, N., Adelman, L., Eccleston, A., & Parker, M.T. (2011). To be or not to be (ethnic): Public vs. private expressions of ethnic identification differentially impact national inclusion of White and non-White ethnic groups. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47, 908-914.
  • Parker, M.T., & Isbell, L. M. (2010). How I vote depends on how I feel: The differential impact of anger and fear on political information processing. Psychological Science, 21, 548-550.
  • Preiss, R.W., Cortez, D., Parker, M.T., & Gayle, B.M. (2014, April). Servant leadership and happiness: Evidence about subjective well-being, optimism, and those who follow servant leaders. Paper presented at "Happiness and the Virtues" sponsored by The D.B. Reinhart Institue for Ethics in Leadership, La Crosee, WI.
  • Parker, M.T., Totten, A., & Janoff-Bulman, R. (2013, January). The moralization of social groups: Consequences for intergroup relations and social identity. Poster presented at the 14th annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, New Orleans, LA.
  • Parker, M.T., & Janoff-Bulman, R. (2010, January). The path to outgroup derogation: Outgroup-directed negativity as a function of percieved threat in morality-based groups. Poster presented at the 11th annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Las Vegas, NV.

Courses Taught

  • PSYC 171: General Psychology
  • PSYC/SOCL 223: Applied Statistics for the Social Sciences
  • PSYC/SOCL 250: Social Psychology
  • PSYC 330: Critical Inquiry in Psychology
  • PSYC 499: Psychology Capstone
  • VUSM 200: Living in a Diverse World

Professional Affiliations

  • Association for Psychological Science (APS)
  • Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP)
  • International Society for Justice Research (ISJR)
  • Society for the Teaching of Psychology (STP)
  • Social Psychology Network (SPN)