Alison Chasteen received her BA from Kalamazoo College and her PhD from Washington University in St. Louis. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan before joining the University of Toronto. She is a social psychologist with specialized training in aging and cognition. She is a consulting editor for the journal Psychology and Aging and serves as a reviewer for numerous social psychology and aging journals. Please Click Here for her research interests.
As a researcher, my interests can be summarized by two main clusters. First, I am passionate about questions that relate to how people are stigmatized for the intimate relationships they have (e.g. homosexuals, online daters, polyamory). Second, I like to investigate what can be done to reduce prejudice. So far, my work has mostly revolved around confrontations of antigay prejudice and the costs and benefits that arise from such an action. In the future, I would like to expand to different types of prejudices, as well as different types of actions people could engage in to improve their situation or that of those around them.
I am currently conducting several lines of research related to prejudice and stereotyping. I am curious about how external and internal factors, such as context and individual differences, influence perceptions of outgroup members. Specifically, I am exploring how these factors relate to age and race stereotypes. I am also developing a line of research that explores the role that videogames can play in intergroup relations, both their positive and negative aspects. In my future research, I hope to expand and connect these lines of research.
I am interested in researching prejudice involving different populations, and in particular, the effects of stereotyping and biases on intergroup relations. Currently, I am focusing on people’s attitudes towards interracial relationships and how they relate to behaviors towards these couples. Some questions that I am exploring are: How are different types of interracial relationships perceived? What internal and external factors can account for people’s behaviors towards interracial couples? In the future, I hope to extend this research to the study of various types of close relationships such as interfaith dating and parent-child relations, as well as explore the implications of such attitudes on perceptions of multiracial children.
Broadly, I'm interested in intergroup relations. My primary line of research focuses on intergroup contact, examining how both direct (i.e., social interaction) and indirect (i.e., exposure to outgroups in the media) forms of contact influence intergroup attitudes in daily life. My research with Dr. Chasteen examines how target age influences perceptions of new immigrants. To gain a comprehensive understanding of these processes, I use a multi-method approach that combines self-report, cognitive, behavioural, and physiological measures.
I completed the Psychology Research Specialist program and graduated from the University of Toronto in 2015 with an Hon.B.Sc. I became involved in research in my second year and have since worked in cognitive and social psychology labs at the University of Toronto. I joined the Adult Development Lab in my third year, and had the privilege of completing both my third year mini-thesis and my fourth year thesis under the supervision of Alison. As the lab manager, I oversee all aspects of conducting research in the lab and ensure that our graduate and undergraduate students have all the resources needed to complete their studies.
Undergraduate students who would like to either volunteer in the Adult Development Lab or do a research project for course credit with Professor Chasteen should email her for more information at chasteen[at]psych.utoronto.ca