Welcome to the Self and Social Motivation Laboratory website!

Dr. Jennifer Crocker, Ph.D.

We study interpersonal goals, particularly self-image goals and compassionate goals, and their correlates, antecedents, and consequences for learning, self-regulation, relationships, and mental and physical health.

Self-image goals focus on controlling how others view the self, whereas compassionate goals focus on responding to others’ needs. Research conducted in the self and social motivation lab examines how these goals shape intrapersonal processes such as cognition, emotions, beliefs, and physiology, and interpersonal processes such as support, responsiveness, and relationship quality. The laboratory is directed by Jennifer Crocker, Ph.D., and located in Lazenby Hall at the Ohio State University.

We study these processes using a wide range of research methods. Laboratory experiments investigate the effects of goals and related variables on cognitive processes such as working memory, emotions, and relationship processes. Longitudinal studies investigate the dynamic processes through which goals shape what people experience and how they behave, which affects what other people experience and how others behave, which then affects the self. Survey studies examine the relation of compassionate and self-image goals to other constructs.

This site is intended to provide useful information to students, researchers, and anyone interested in how interpersonal goals can foster or undermine well-being. If you would like information beyond what the website provides, feel free to contact the lab manager, Tao Jiang, or the PI, Jennifer Crocker, Ph.D.