My research on contingencies of self-worth explores what it is that people believe they need to be or do to have value and worth as a person, and the consequences of those beliefs. I am particularly interested in how people pursue self-esteem by trying to prove or demonstrate that they have worth and value, and how this pursuit affects the satisfaction of the fundamental human needs for learning, relationships, autonomy, self-regulation, and mental and physical health. Although there are demonstrated benefits of pursuing self-esteem (especially emotional benefits), my own research focuses on the costs of this pursuit, because people are often oblivious to the costs of pursuing self-esteem by trying to prove their worth and value, especially the costs to other people.
- Culture and Ethnicity
- Gender Psychology
- Health Psychology
- Interpersonal Processes
- Motivation, Goal Setting
- Person Perception
- Personality, Individual Differences
- Prejudice and Stereotyping
- Self and Identity
- Social Cognition
Research Group or Laboratory:
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- Crocker, J., & Major, B. (1989). Social stigma and self-esteem: The self-protective properties of stigma. Psychological Review, 96, 608-630. (Winner of 1988 Gordon Allport Intergroup Relations Prize).
- Crocker, J. (2011). Presidential Address: Self-image and compassionate goals and construction of the social self: Implications for social and personality psychology. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 15, 394-407.
- Crocker, J., Canevello, A., Breines, J. G., & Flynn, H. (2010). Interpersonal goals and change in anxiety and dysphoria: Effects of compassionate and self-image goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 98, 1009-1024.
- Canevello, A., & Crocker, J. (2010). Creating good relationships: Responsiveness, relationship quality, and interpersonal goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99, 78-106.
- Niiya, Y., Brook, A. T., & Crocker, J. (2010). Contingent self-worth and self-handicapping: Do contingent incremental theorists protect self-esteem? Self and Identity, 9, 276-297.
- Crocker, J., Olivier, M.-A., & Nuer, N. (2009). Self-image goals and compassionate goals: Costs and benefits. Self and Identity, 8, 251-269.
- Breines, J. G., Crocker, J., & Garcia, J. A. (2008). Self-objectification and well-being in women's daily lives. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34, 583-598.
- Crocker, J., & Canevello, A. (2008). Creating and undermining social support in communal relationships: The role of compassionate and self-image goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95, 555-575.
- Crocker, J., & Park, L. E. (2004). The costly pursuit of self-esteem. Psychological Bulletin, 130, 392-414.
- Crocker, J., & Nuer, N. (2004). Do people need self-esteem? Comment on Pyszczynski et al. (2004). Psychological Bulletin, 130, 469-472.
- Crocker, J., Karpinski, A., Quinn, D. M., & Chase, S. (2003). When grades determine self-worth: Consequences of contingent self-worth for male and female engineering and psychology majors. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 85, 507-516.
- Crocker, J., & Luhtanen, R. K. (2003). Level of self-esteem and contingencies of self-worth: Unique effects on academic, social, and financial problems in college freshmen. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29, 701-712.
- Crocker, J., Luhtanen, R. K., Cooper, M. L., & Bouvrette, S. (2003). Contingencies of self-worth in college students: Theory and measurement. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 85, 894-908.
- Crocker, J., Sommers, S., & Luhtanen, R. (2002). Hopes dashed and dreams fulfilled: Contingencies of self-worth in the graduate school admissions process. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 28, 1275-1286.
- Jambekar, S., & Quinn, D. M., & Crocker, J. (2001). Effects of weight and achievement primes on the self-esteem of college women, Psychology of Women Quarterly, 25, 48-56.
- Crocker, J., & Wolfe, C. T. (2001). Contingencies of self-worth. Psychological Review, 108, 593-623.
- Twenge, J., & Crocker, J. (2002). Race, ethnicity, and self-esteem: Meta-analyses comparing Whites, Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and Native Americans, including a commentary on Gray-Little and Hafdahl (2000). Psychological Bulletin, 128, 371-408.
- Quinn, D. M., & Crocker, J. (1999). When ideology hurts: Effects of feeling fat and the Protestant ethic on the psychological well-being of women. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 77, 402-414.
- Crocker, J., Major, B., & Steele, C. (1998). Social stigma. In Gilbert, D., Fiske, S. T., & Lindzey, G. (Eds.), The Handbook of Social Psychology (4th ed., Vol. 2, pp. 504-553). New York: McGraw Hill.
- Advanced Social Psychology
- Introduction to Psychology
- Introduction to Social Psychology
- Scientific Inquiry in Psychology
- Self and Self-Esteem
- Social Psychology of the Self
- Social Stigma
Department of Psychology
Ohio State University
1827 Neil Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
- Phone: (614) 292-0985
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org