University of Alabama

Psychology Lab

Principal Investigator - Alexa Tullett

I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama. I grew up in Toronto (although some might insist that Scarborough doesn't count) and then went on to study physiology and psychology at the University of Western Ontario. I discovered my love for social psychology when I noticed that it was something I could talk about outside of school (unlike cell biology) and when I realized that I like humans much more than I like starlings.

Investigator - Alex McDiarmid

I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama. I grew up in Toronto (although some might insist that Scarborough doesn't count) and then went on to study physiology and psychology at the University of Western Ontario. I discovered my love for social psychology when I noticed that it was something I could talk about outside of school (unlike cell biology) and when I realized that I like humans much more than I like starlings.

  • “I can negate everything of that part of me that lives on vague nostalgias, except this desire for unity, this longing to solve, this need for clarity and cohesion.” – Albert Camus, from The Myth of Sisyphus

    In this sentence, Camus captures both my motivation to do scientific research, and the psychological questions that interest me – I am a psychologist who is driven to make sense of how people make sense of the world. This general fascination has manifested itself in two main lines of research, one focusing on the belief systems that people use to organize the world, and the other focusing on how people come to understand the feelings and thoughts of others. At times, these interests have led me to use well-established self-report measures of people’s conscious thoughts or feelings, and at other times it has led me to turn to neural or psychophysiological measures that can tap into people’s rapid, and largely uncontrollable reactions. Similarly, there have been instances when questions have called for a focus on the power of the situation, and other instances when they’ve called for a focus on the things that make people unique.
  • In my other main area of research, I have explored the belief systems that help people to make sense of the world. At an abstract level, this domain of inquiry touches on the reasons why people believe, whether it is in religion, science, justice, or any number of other frameworks for understanding themselves and their environment. At a more concrete level, it raises questions about how people’s beliefs influence their interactions with the world by shaping their expectations, interpretations, and behaviors. Thus far, I have explored these issues by examining the neuro affective consequences of priming or violating belief systems, and by observing the ways in which people protect their belief systems.

    BELIEF.

  • One of my main lines of research explores the circumstances and individual characteristics that foster caring and compassion for other people. People often show a remarkable ability to "feel for" the pain of others, a capacity that seems to depend on the emotional dispositions and states of the empathizer. In other words, there may be affective profiles that facilitate empathy for suffering. I have begun to explore these questions using EEG measures of frontal cortical asymmetry as well as EMG measures of facial muscle movements.

    EMPATHY.

PEOPLE

Alexa Tullett

Arguing with a lawyer is not the hardest thing in the world; not arguing is.

Alex McDiarmid

Hate lawyers all you want. Unlike you, we'll never be replaced with robots. Case closed!

LIKE

Some people don’t like lawyers, that is, until they need them.

PAY

Trials for lawyers are like bills. It seems that you finish paying one, and feel that feeling of relief, then it’s time to pay it again.

ASK

What the efficient market hypothesis doesn't account for is that people are not always rational. Just ask any divorce lawyer.

JUSTICE

Justice isn’t about fixing the past; it’s about healing the past's future.

NEWS.                                                       OPPORTUNITIES.

BPL Studios

Booka

Vinyl LLC

Uzor & Co

PUBLICATIONS.

Publications

Tullett, A. M., Harmon-Jones, E., & Inzlicht, M. (2012). Right frontal cortical asymmetry predicts empathic reactions: Support for a link between withdrawal motivation and empathy. Psychophysiology49, 1145-1153. (PDF)

Tullett, A. M., Teper, R. & Inzlicht, M. (2011). Confronting meaninglessness: A new framework for understanding responses to unsettling events. Perspectives on Psychological Science6(5), 447-453. (PDF)

Inzlicht, M., Tullett, A. M., & Good, M. (2011). The need to believe: A neuroscience account of religion as a motivated process. Religion, Brain & Behavior1(3), 192-212. (PDF)

Inzlicht, M., Tullett, A. M., & Good, M. (2011). Existential neuroscience: A proximate explanation of religion as flexible meaning and palliative. Religion, Brain & Behavior1(3), 244-251. (PDF)

Inzlicht, M., Tullett, A. M., Legault, L. & Kang, S. K. (2011). Lingering effects: Stereotype threat hurts more than you think. Social Issues and Policy Review5, 227-256. (PDF)

Inzlicht, M., Tullett, A. M., & Gutsell, J. N. (2011). Stereotype threat spillover: The short and long-term effects of coping with threats to social identity. In M. Inzlicht & T. Schmader (Eds.). Stereotype Threat: Theory, Process, and Application. New York: Oxford University Press. (PDF)

Tullett, A. M., & Inzlicht, M. (2010). The voice of self-control: Blocking the inner voice increases impulsive responding. Acta Psychologica135, 252-256. (PDF)

Inzlicht, M. & Tullett, A. M. (2010). Reflecting on God: Religious primes can reduce neurophysiological response to errors. Psychological Science21, 1184-1190. (PDF)

In Press

Tullett, A. M., Prentice, M., Teper, R., Nash, K., Inzlicht, M., & McGregor, I. (in press). Neural foundations of meaning and threat. In K. Markman, T. Proulx, & M. Lindberg (Eds.). The Psychology of Meaning. American Psychological Association. (PDF)

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GET IN TOUCH.

Alexa Tullett

Gordon Palmer Room #416

Tuscaloosa, Al 89GR.

Freephone: +1 800 559 6580
Telephone: +1 800 603 6035
Email: alexa.tullett@Gmail.com

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