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Scott Allison's Lab

Lab Description

Dr. Allison’s students are currently involved in his program of research on people’s belief systems about heroes, legends, leaders, martyrs, and underdogs.  Research questions include:  How do we perceive heroes?  What psychological needs do they fulfill?  What path do heroes take to become heroes, and how do we mentally construct heroic people?  What leadership qualities do heroes possess?  How do underdogs triumph over adversity?  In what ways are martyrs inspiring?   Students are pursuing projects relevant to these questions through the use of methodologies as varied as experimental design, survey techniques, interviews, archival analyses, and observational procedures.  Much of this research is conducted in collaboration with Dr. George Goethals from our Jepson School of Leadership Studies.  Our blog on today’s heroes can be found at