Shannon Brady
Assistant Professor of Psychology
(336) 758-4814
Greene Hall 444

Research Interests

We create psychological worlds for each other—worlds of meaning, selves, identity, and belonging. These worlds shape not only our psychological experience, but our performance, well-being, and health. These worlds unfold over time, and they can persist far into the future.

My research examines these worlds: how they are created in important life settings, such as through institutional messages and practices, and their consequences along a wide array of outcomes ranging from subjective experience (e.g., well-being, belonging), to achievement (e.g., grades), to relationships (e.g., close friends), to health (e.g., gene expression). In the tradition of Kurt Lewin, a primary way I investigate these worlds is through psychological intervention. By helping broaden who people feel they are or can be in a given setting, I simultaneously advance psychological theory, elucidate psychological dimensions of major social issues, and develop new, theory-based ways to improve individual and community life. Because inequality is endemic to many institutional contexts, my research on affecting institutional change to improve opportunity, success, and well-being also seeks to advance equity and inclusion.

Representative Publications

  • Carter, E. R., Brady, S. T., Murdock-Perriera, L. A., Gilbertson, M. K., Ablorh, T., & Murphy, M. C. (in press). The racial composition of students’ friendship networks predicts perceptions of injustice and involvement in collective action. Journal of Theoretical Social Psychology.
  • Brady, S. T., Hard, B. M., & Gross, J. J. (2018). Reappraising test anxiety increases academic performance for first-year college students. Journal of Educational Psychology, 110(3), 395-406.
  • Walton, G. M., & Brady, S. T. (2017). The many questions of belonging. In A. J. Elliot, C. S. Dweck, & D. S. Yeager (Eds.), Handbook of competence and motivation (2nd Edition): Theory and application. New York: Guilford. (link)
  • Brady, S. T., Reeves, S. L., Garcia, J., Purdie-Vaughns, V., Cook, J. E., Taborsky-Barba, S., Tomasetti, S., Davis, E. M., & Cohen, G. L. (2016). The psychology of the affirmed learner: Spontaneous self-affirmation in the face of stress. Journal of Educational Psychology, 108(3), 353-373.
  • Yeager, D. S., Walton, G. M., Brady, S. T., Akcinar, E. N., Paunesku, D., Keane, L., Kamentz, D., Ritter, G., Duckworth, A. L., Urstein, R., Gomez, E. M., Markus, H. R., Cohen, G. L., & Dweck, C. S. (2016). Is it possible to improve the college transition in advance? Teaching a lay theory before college narrows achievement gaps at scale. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113, E3341-E3348.

 Recent Student-Led Posters

  • Pinedo, A., Brady S. T., Walton. G. M. (March, 2018). At school, feeling disconnected from home: Home-school disconnect predicts well-being for university students. Poster presented at the 19th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Ospina, J. P., Brady, S. T., Cole, S. W., Cohen, G. L., & Walton, G. M. (March, 2018). Narratives about adversity buffer the genome against adversity. Poster presented at the 19th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Mohler, M. N., Hard, B. M., Lam, A.*, & Brady, S. T. (June, 2017). Student perceptions of instructors’ anxiety management strategies. Poster presented at the 2017 Conference of the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
  • Williams, H. E., Torrez, B. R., Walton, G. M., & Brady, S. T. (January, 2017). Punishment or process?: How shifting the way schools communicate about academic probation can improve student well-being and success. Poster presented at the 18th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, San Antonio, Texas.