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Mark Seery, Ph.D.

SeeryMarkAssociate Professor
Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara
Office 361 Park Hall
(716) 645-0239
Lab Website
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Summary of Research Interests

On the broadest level, I study stress and coping. Potentially stressful situations — for example, test taking, interviewing for a job, competing against others, approaching potential romantic partners, and public speaking — can represent some of the most important moments that people face in life. Situations that may appear to be similar, however, can be experienced quite differently by different individuals. A central question that guides my work is: What factors contribute to resilience versus vulnerability to potential stressors? In my current research, I focus on three core topics: (1) examining when and how high self-esteem serves as a resource versus a vulnerability, and the associated consequences for potentially destructive behavior; (2) investigating how past experience of adverse life events can contribute to developing a propensity for future resilience; and (3) exploring the role of individuals’ relationships with significant others and groups (e.g., romantic relationships, friendships, identification with sports teams) in resilience versus vulnerability. The research conducted in my laboratory incorporates a range of methodological approaches, including theoretically based psychophysiological measures. Funding from the National Science Foundation has supported this work.


Representative Publications

  • Murray, S. L., Lamarche, V., Gomillion, S., Seery, M. D., & Kondrak, C. L. (in press). In defense of commitment:  The curative power of violated expectations in relationships. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
  • Kondrak, C. L., Seery, M. D., Gabriel, S., & Lupien, S. P. (2017). What’s good for me depends on what I see in you: Intimacy avoidance and resources derived from close others. Self and Identity, 16, 557-579.
  • Streamer, L., Seery, M. D., Kondrak, C. L., Lamarche, V. M., & Saltsman, T. (2017). Not I, but she: The beneficial effects of self-distancing on challenge/threat cardiovascular responses. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 70, 235-241.
  • Seery, M. D., & Quinton, W. J. (2016). Understanding resilience: From negative life events to everyday stressors. In J. M. Olson & M. P. Zanna (Eds.), Advances in experimental social psychology (Vol. 54, pp. 181-245). Cambridge, MA: Academic Press.
  • Seery, M. D., Gabriel, S., Lupien, S. P., & Shimizu, M. (2016). Alone against the group: A unanimously disagreeing group leads to conformity, but cardiovascular threat depends on one’s goals. Psychophysiology, 53, 1263-1271. 
  • Seery, M. D., Kondrak, C. L., Streamer, L., Saltsman, T., & Lamarche, V. M. (2016). Preejection period can be calculated using R peak instead of Q. Psychophysiology, 53, 1232-1240. 
  • Smallets, S. A. M., Streamer, L., Kondrak, C. L., & Seery, M. D. (2016). Bringing you down versus bringing me up: Discrepant versus congruent high explicit self-esteem differentially predict malicious and benign envy. Personality and Individual Differences, 94, 173-179.
  • Seery, M. D., & Quinton, W. J. (2015). Targeting prejudice: Personal self-esteem as a resource for Asians’ attributions to racial discrimination. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 6, 677-684.
  • Streamer, L., & Seery, M. D. (2015). Who am I? The interactive effect of early family experiences and self-esteem in predicting self-clarity. Personality and Individual Differences, 77, 18-21.
  • Seery, M. D. (2013). The biopsychosocial model of challenge and threat: Using the heart to measure the mind. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 7, 637-653.
  • Seery, M. D., Leo, R. J., Lupien, S. P., Kondrak, C. L., & Almonte, J. L. (2013). An upside to adversity? Moderate cumulative lifetime adversity is associated with resilient responses in the face of controlled stressors. Psychological Science, 24, 1181-1189.
  • Murray, S. L., Lupien, S. P., & Seery, M. D. (2012). Resilience in the face of romantic rejection: The automatic impulse to trust. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, 845-854.
  • Lupien, S. P., Seery, M. D., & Almonte, J. L. (2012). Unstable high self-esteem and the eliciting conditions of self-doubt. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, 762-765.
  • Seery, M. D. (2011). Resilience: A silver lining to experiencing adverse life events? Current Directions in Psychological Science, 20, 390-394.
  • Seery, M. D. (2011). Challenge or threat? Cardiovascular indexes of resilience and vulnerability to potential stress in humans. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 35, 1603-1610.
  • Seery, M. D., Holman, E. A., & Silver, R. C. (2010). Whatever does not kill us: Cumulative lifetime adversity, vulnerability, and resilience. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99, 1025-1041.