Jennifer Cole

Jennifer Cole

Postdoctoral Scholar, Social Psychology

Research Interests/Areas of Expertise

Social psychology, political polarization, environmental behavior, social norms

Biography

Biography

Dr. Cole completed her Ph.D. in social psychology at the University of Colorado Boulder in the summer of 2021. During graduate school, her research focused on social norms and political polarization surrounding climate change and COVID-19. Prior to her Ph.D., she earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology with a minor in energy and water sustainability at Rice University. She also earned a Master of Environmental Management in energy and the environment at Duke University. She has work experience in environmental nonprofit organizations prior to and during graduate school. She is now continuing her work on polarization of climate change as a postdoctoral research fellow at Vanderbilt University.

Awards & Accomplishments

During graduate school, Jennifer was awarded the American Psychological Association Division 34 (Society for Environmental, Population, and Conservation Society) Graduate Student Research Award in 2021. She won the student poster award at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Sustainability Preconference in 2017 and the student data blitz award at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Sustainability Preconference in 2018. The University of Colorado Boulder psychology department awarded her a Graduate Part-Time Instructor Award for teaching excellence in 2021.

Impact

Jennifer presents her work at conferences to audiences that include academics and practitioners.

Leadership

Jennifer is co-chair of the 2022 Society for Personality and Social Psychology Sustainability Preconference. She has served on organizing committees for this conference and other climate psychology conferences in the past.

Publications

Jennifer submits work to environmental psychology and social psychology journals.

Teaching

Jennifer's teaching focuses on helping students use social psychological theories to understand and address real-world issues. She taught social psychology at the University of Colorado Boulder during graduate school and also served as an undergraduate honors thesis advisor and teaching assistant.

On A Personal Note...

Jennifer loves exploring parks around Nashville by trail running! She competes in road marathons and trail ultramarathons.

Research Interests

Jennifer is interested in psychological drivers of political polarization surrounding climate change and how to bridge the political divide. She is studying these questions in the context of the Vanderbilt Climate Change Prediction Market. Jennifer's expertise is in social psychology methods, theories, and data analysis. Her research is primarily founded in social psychological theories of social norms and political polarization and she employs quantitative experimental methods. She has experience with a variety of statistical methods including structural equation modeling, multilevel modeling, and Bayesian statistics.

Education

Ph.D., Social Psychology, University of Colorado Boulder, 2021

M.E.M., Enviromental Management, Duke University, 2016

B.A., Rice University, 2014