Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Valerie E. Stone

Valerie E. Stone

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I am no longer an academic researcher. I got tenure in 2006, and once I didn't need to prove that I could get tenure anymore, decided that I wanted to do more to help those with traumatic brain injury (TBI), who had been the subject of my research for so long. I am in the process of respecializing in clinical psychology, working to help those with brain injury.

Sleep deprivation and insomnia are problems for people with TBI (or for academics, for that matter!), and often serve to make people more impulsive, more likely to rely on stereotypes, and less likely to make good decisions. I work to help those with insomnia get consistent, restorative sleep without drugs, using specific techniques from behavioral psychology. I hope to be licensed in Colorado soon - I graduated with my Respecialization in Clinical Psychology in Dec. 2017.

My research in social neuroscience looked at the nature of human social intelligence, from both applied and theoretical perspectives.

Social competence: My applied research focused on the importance of assessing social judgment in determinations of legal competency, e.g., in deciding whether to appoint a financial conservator for someone with a head injury. Neuropsychologists are often called on to provide assessments in such cases, yet often do not have good tools to assess social judgment. With colleagues, I have developed several measures to fill this gap.

Theoretical perspectives: I combined perspectives from the study of human evolution and from cognitive neuroscience in studying the social brain. I am particularly interested in the evolution of the frontal lobes and their role in social intelligence.

Place attachment and interpersonal attachment: I have also focused on how people form place attachments. The interpersonal attachment system is common to mammals, and depends on the neuropeptide oxytocin. Territoriality, or attachment to place, is far more ancient evolutionarily, and depends on neuropeptides called nonapeptides, from which oxytocin may have been derived in evolution. My research has found that there are strong similarities in the dimensions of people's emotional attachments to places and to people: safe haven, secure base, separation protest, and proximity seeking.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Emotion, Mood, Affect
  • Evolution and Genetics
  • Neuroscience, Psychophysiology
  • Nonverbal Behavior
  • Person Perception
  • Social Cognition

Research Group or Laboratory:

Journal Articles:

Other Publications:

Courses Taught:

  • Evolutionary Approaches to Human Behavior
  • Neuroscience for Psychologists
  • Social Neuroscience
  • Phone: +1 303 669 8528

Valerie E. Stone
PO Box 270194
Littleton, Colorado 80127
United States

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