Welcome to the Interpersonal Perception and Social Cognition Laboratory
Lab Director: Dr. Jennifer Steele

The Interpersonal Perception and Social Cognition (IPSC) laboratory is housed in the Behavioural Sciences Building at York University in Toronto, Ontario.† This laboratory is part of the Psychology Department in the Faculty of Health at York University.† We conduct social psychological research that focuses on stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination, interpersonal processes, intergroup relations and social development.† This research is conducted primarily from a social cognitive perspective.

Researchers in this laboratory include faculty, graduate students, thesis and independent study students, as well as multiple paid and volunteer research assistants.† The director of this laboratory is Dr. Jennifer Steele, an Associate Professor in Social Psychology at York University.† Our research, which is conducted with adult and child participants, has been funded by various external and internal sources including the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI), the Faculty of Health, the Atkinson Faculty of Liberal and Professional Studies, and York University.

One overarching goal of our research is to better understand how we can challenge racial biases early in development. In another main line of research, we aim to understand the early development of academic stereotypes, including gender stereotypes in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). One ultimate goal of this research is to enhance traditionally underrepresented students' sense of belonging and ultimately their achievement and representation in various academic contexts. You can learn more about the research being done on this topic through the Engendering Success in STEM (ESS) website. Some of our research takes an intersectional approach, recognizing the unique experiences of discrimination that a student can face based on their multiple identities.

As a lab, we recognize that systemic racism serves as a substantial and ongoing barrier to equity, diversity, and inclusion. We realize that this is particularly the case for Black, Indigenous, and people of colour (BIPOC). We further recognize the importance and value of supporting students who face systemic barriers based on race, religion, gender or gender identity, SES, physical or mental disabilities, age, country of origin or immigration status, and including those from LGBTQ2+ communities.

We strive to create a lab culture that values, respects, and supports each studentís perspectives and contributions, and that aims to ensure that each lab member is able to reach their full research potential. We believe that diversity enriches our lab and we particularly encourage students from the communities noted above to apply to join us.

The administration at York University shares this vision. You can find resources designed to support the fight against discrimination through the Calumet College website. Calumet College is the on-campus undergraduate community affiliated with the Department of Psychology at York University.

If you would like to learn more about our research, or would like to learn how you can get involved, please follow the links above and below.

Read a November 2017 Y-file article about the lab's research by clicking here.

Read a September 2019 Y-file article about the lab's research by clicking here.

Read a CBC article about our findings by clicking here.

See Dr. Steele's CV by clicking here.

Follow Dr. Steele on twitter @steeleje123.

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© 2007 Jennifer Steele, Ph.D., York University.                For information about this website please contact Christina Lapytskaia at clapy@yorku.ca                Last updated: 2021-10-28