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Dr.  Crystal L. Hoyt
Dr. Crystal L. Hoyt
Professor of Leadership Studies and Psychology and the Colonel Leo K. & Gaylee Thorsness Endowed Chair in Ethical Leadership
On Sabbatical: fall 2022 - fall 2023

Dr. Crystal L. Hoyt received a Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2003 and a B.A. from Claremont McKenna College in 1997. She is currently a professor of leadership studies and psychology and the Colonel Leo K. & Gaylee Thorsness Endowed Chair in Ethical Leadership.

Her scholarship generally resides at the intersection of human belief systems and social justice. She explores the role of beliefs, such as mindsets, self-efficacy, stereotypes, and political ideologies, in the experiences and the perceptions of individuals with stigmatized social identities, such as women and minorities in leadership or STEM fields, the overweight, or sexual minorities. Her work contributes to a better understanding of the role of belief systems in fundamental social issues, including ethical failures in leadership, intergroup discrimination, leadership and educational achievement gaps, and wealth inequality. These social issues are complex and challenging, and a scientific understanding of them can help ensure that relevant social policies and interventions are both informed and intentional.

Hoyt has received grants and awards recognizing her teaching and research. She is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and a recipient of both the University of Richmond’s Distinguished Educator Award and the Distinguished Scholarship Award. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation and appears in journals, such as Psychological Science, Journal of Experimental and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and The Leadership Quarterly. She has published over 60 journal articles and book chapters and has co-edited three books. Her research and writing has been featured in news outlets, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the Boston Globe, the Today Show, and NPR’s Tell Me More, among others.


Distinguished Scholarship Award, University of Richmond, 2021

SPSP Fellow, Society for Personality and Social Psychology, 2020

APS Fellow, Association for Psychological Science, 2018

Outstanding Alumni Award, Psychology Department, Claremont McKenna College, 2012

Distinguished Educator Award, University of Richmond, 2009

Selected Publications

Goethals, A., & Hoyt, C. (Eds.). (2017). Women and leadership: History, theories, and case studies. Berkshire Publishing.


Burnette, Jeni L.,  Joseph Billingsley, and Crystal L. Hoyt. (2022). "Harnessing growth mindsests to help individuals flourish." Social and Personality Psychology Compass.

Burnette, Jeni L., Crystal L. Hoyt, Buttrick, N., and Auster-Gussman, L. (2022). Well-being in the time of COVID-19: Do metaphors and mindsets matter? International Journal of Psychology. 

Hoyt, Crystal L., Jeni L. Burnette, Emma Nash, Whitney Becker, and Joseph Billingsley. (2021). “Growth Mindsets of Anxiety: Do the Benefits to Individual Flourishing Come with Societal Costs?” The Journal of Positive Psychology.

Hoyt, Crystal L., Jeni L. Burnette, Rachel B. Forsyth, Mitchell Parry, and Brenten H. DeShields. (2021). Believing in the American Dream sustains negative attitudes toward those in poverty. Social Psychology Quarterly.  

Burnette, Jeni L., Crystal L. Hoyt, Nicholas Buttrick, and Lisa A. Auster-Gussman. (2021). Well-being in the time of COVID-19: Do metaphors and mindsets matter? International Journal of Psychology.

Hoyt, C.L., & DeShields, B.H. (2020). How social-class background influences perceptions of political leaders. Political Psychology. 

Pollack, Jeffrey M., Jon C. Carr, Andrew C. Corbett, Crystal L. Hoyt, Franz W. Kellermanns, Bradley L. Kirkman, and Corinne Post. (2020). Contextual and Interactional Approaches to Advancing Leadership and Entrepreneurship Research. Journal of Management Studies. 

Hoyt, C.L., & Burnette, J.L. (2020). Growth mindset messaging in stigma-relevant contexts: Harnessing benefits without costs. Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences. 

Hoyt, C.L., Allison, S.T., Barnowski, A., & Sultan, A. (2020). Lay theories of heroism and leadership: The role of gender, communion, and agency. Social Psychology.

Lindgren, K.P., Burnette, J.L., Hoyt, C.L., Peterson, K.P., & Neighbors, C. (2019). Growth mindsets of alcoholism buffer against deleterious effects of drinking identity on problem drinking over time. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 

Burnette, J.L., Pollack, J.M., Forsyth, R.B.,  Hoyt, C.L., Babij, A.D., Thomas, F.N., & Coy, A. (2019). A growth mindset intervention: Enhancing students entrepreneurial self-efficacy and career development. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice. 

Babij, A.D., Burnette, J.L., & Hoyt, C.L. (2019). Failing and feeling bad: How we think about experiencing negative emotions during setbacks. Motivation and Emotion.

Schleider, J.L., Burnette, J.L., Widman, L., Hoyt, C.L., & Prinstein, M.J. (2019). Randomized trial of a single-session growth mindset intervention for rural adolescents' internalizing and externalizing problems. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology.

Burnette, J.L., Forsyth, R.B., Desmarais, S.L., & Hoyt, C.L. (2019). Mindsets of addiction: Implications for treatment choices in an online sample of substance users. Journal of Social & Clinical Psychology, 38, 367-394.

Thomas, F.N., Burnette, J.L., & Hoyt, C.L. (2019). Mindsets of health and healthy eating intentions. Journal of Applied Social Psychology. 49, 372-380.

Burnette, J.L., Hoyt, C.L., Russell, M., Lawson, B., Dweck, C.S., & Finkel, E.J. (2019). A growth mind-set intervention improves interest but not academic performance in the field of computer science. Social Psychological and Personality Science. DOI: 10.1177/1948550619841631

Hoyt, C.L., Morgenroth, T., & Burnette, J.L. (2019). Understanding sexual prejudice: The role of political ideology and strategic essentialism. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 49 (1), 3-14.

Hoyt, C.L., & Parry, M. (2018). Sociocultural and individual manifestations of sexual stigma: The role of political ideology and prejudice in discrimination against sexual minorities. Journal of Social and Political Psychology, 6(1), 92-128. doi:10.5964/jspp.v6i1.810

Hoyt, C.L., *Forsyth, R., & Burnette, J.L. (2018). Social dominance orientation moderates the effectiveness of mindset messages. British Journal of Social Psychology, 52 (2) 448-460.

Hoyt, C.L., Moss, A.J., Burnette, J.L., Schieffelin, A., & Goethals, A. (2018). Wealth inequality and activism: Perceiving injustice galvanizes social change but perceptions depend on political ideologies. European Journal of Social Psychology.

Hoyt, C.L. & Simon, S. (2016). The role of social dominance orientation and patriotism in the evaluation of minority and female leaders. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 46, 518–528. DOI: 10.1111/jasp.12380

Hoyt, C.L. & Murphy, S. (2016). Managing to clear the air: Stereotype threat, women, and leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 27(3), 387-399. doi:10.1016/j.leaqua.2015.11.002

Hoyt, C.L. & Goldin, A. (2016). Political ideology and American intergroup discrimination: A patriotism perspective. The Journal of Social Psychology, 156(4), 369-381. DOI: 10.1080/00224545.2015.1106434

Hoyt, C.L. & Price, T. (2015). Ethical decision making and leadership: Merging social role and self-construal perspectivesJournal of Business Ethics, 126, 531-539.

Hoyt, C.L., Burnette, J., &  Auster-Gussman, L. (2014). "Obesity is a disease": Examining the self-regulatory impact of this public-health message. Psychological Science, 25, 997-1002.

Hoyt, C.L. (2013). Inspirational or self-deflating: The role of self-efficacy in elite role model effectiveness. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 4, 290-298.

Simon, S., & Hoyt, C.L. (2013). Exploring the effect of media images on women’s leadership self-perceptions and aspirations. Group Processes & Intergroup Relations, 16, 232-245.

Hoyt, C.L., Burnette, J., & Innella, A. (2012). I can do that: The impact of implicit theories on leadership role model effectiveness. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 38, 257-268.

Hoyt, C.L. (2012). Gender bias in employment contexts: A closer examination of the role incongruity principleJournal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, 86-96.

Hoyt, C.L., Simon, S., & Innella, A. (2011).  Taking a turn toward the masculine: The impact of mortality salience on implicit leadership theories. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 33, 374-381.

Hoyt, C. & Simon, S. (2011). Female leader role models: Injurious or inspiring? Psychology of Women Quarterly, 35, 143-157.


Simon, Stefanie, and Crystal L. Hoyt. (2021). Gender and Leadership. In Peter G. Northouse (ed.), Leadership: Theory and Practice, 9th edition. Los Angeles: Sage. 

Hoyt, C.L., & Burnette, J. (2019). Efficacy and growth mindsets buffer against identity threat for women in leadership positions. In S. Tan and L. DeFrank-Cole (Eds.) Women’s Leadership Journeys Revealed.

Hoyt, C.L., & Simon, S. (2017). Social psychological approaches to women and leadership theory. In S. Madsen (Ed.) Handbook of Research on Gender and Leadership. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Burnette, J.L., Hoyt, C.L., & Orvidas, K. (2017). Mindsets of body weight. In C. Zedelius and J. Schooler (Eds.) Lay Theories. Springer.

Hoyt, C. (2015). Social identities and leadership: The case of gender. In G. Goethals, S. Alison, R. Kramer, & D. Messick’s Conceptions of Leadership: Enduring Ideas and Emerging Insights (pp. 71-91). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Hoyt, C.L., & Simon, S. (2015). Women and leadership. In P. Northouse’s Leadership: Theory and practice, 7th edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Hoyt, C.L. (2013). Leadership within virtual contexts. In Amichai-Hamburger, Y. (Ed.), The social net: Human behavior in cyberspace (2nd edition). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. 

Hoyt, C. & Johnson, S. (2011). Gender and leadership development: A case of female leaders. In S. Murphy’s (Ed.) Building the Next Generation of Leaders (pp. 205-228). Jossey Bass.

Goethals, G. & Hoyt, C.  (2011).  What makes leadership necessary, possible, and effective: The psychological dimensions.  In R. Riggio & M. Harvey (Eds.) Leadership Studies: The Dialogue of Disciplines (pp. 101-118). Edward Elgar.

Forsyth, D. R., & Hoyt, C.L. (2011).  Perspectives on individualism, collectivism, and the greater good.  In D.R. Forsyth & C.L. Hoyt (Eds.) For the Greater Good of All: Perspectives on Individualism, Society, and Leadership. Palgrave Macmillan.

In the News

Crystal L. Hoyt Column: COVID-19 exposes U.S.' dire need for more working-class politicians on future ballots (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Mon., Dec. 7, 2020

A VP Kamala Harris would redefine leadership by smashing race and gender barriers (USA Today)
Mon., Aug. 24, 2020

Governor Northam's forgotten epidemic: Virginia's unemployed (The Washington Post)
Wed., May. 13, 2020

The sexism in liberal politics is real (The Hill)
Mon., Mar. 9, 2020

UR leadership studies professor named fellow (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Sun., Jan. 20, 2019

At 2.6 million strong, Women's Marches crush expectations (USA Today)
Mon., Jan. 23, 2017

Surprising psychology can make the country healthier (Scientific American)
Tue., Jun. 10, 2014

Psychological consequences of calling obesity a disease (NPR)
Tue., Apr. 22, 2014

To be or not to be? Should obesity be a disease? (The Psych Report)
Sun., Mar. 23, 2014

Should obesity be a 'diseae'? (New York Times)
Tue., Feb. 25, 2014

Does labeling obesity as a disease backfire? (Psychology Today, U.S. News, Huffington Post and other outlets)
Thu., Jan. 30, 2014

Why women make better money managers
Fri., Jan. 17, 2014

In leadership, mindsets matter (The New York Times)
Thu., Nov. 7, 2013

New York Times highlights research by Crystal Hoyt and Stefanie Simon, '07
Mon., Aug. 12, 2013

Opinion: Todd Akin, Claire McCaskill and the catch-22 of the 'ladylike' leader (The Washington Post)
Tue., Oct. 9, 2012

Capitol Square plan to honor Va. women stirs debate (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Sun., Sep. 23, 2012

Professor's research on role models discussed in Psychology Today
Tue., Feb. 14, 2012

Research sheds light on voter behavior (US News & World Report)

Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara 2003
B.A., Claremont McKenna College 1997
Contact Information
132 Jepson Hall
(804) 287-6825
(804) 287-6062 (Fax)
Areas of Expertise
Women and Minority Leaders
Stereotypes and Discrimination
Complex Social Issues