Welcome

Thank you for visiting the Purpose and Identity Processes Laboratory web page. Through research, we strive to understand how a having a sense of self, identity, and purpose shape the experiences people have in their everyday lives. Our work focuses on two main themes:

First, we are interested in the psychosocial consequences of having a sense of a purpose in life. Specific questions guiding this work are: How do adolescents and young adults develop and engage with a sense of purpose, and to what extent does cultivating such a sense promote positive adjustment outcomes?  Because knowing who one is and where one is going is important for development across the lifespan, we believe this line of inquiry holds great promise for promoting healthy lives.

Second, we are also interested in race as a meaningful context for lived experience. Thus far, our work has shown that race plays a central role in how people see themselves (e.g., racial identities) and understand the experiences they have (e.g., race-related stressors). Particularly among ethnic minorities, our work is guided by questions such as: How do salient aspects of racial identity function as sources of resilience in the face of negative daily experiences, and how do these relations unfold over time?

Our ultimate aim is to apply sound research methods to examine basic psychological processes. We hope that our work contributes equally to scientific and social communities that might benefit from it.