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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Psychology


Sarah Huff

Dr. Huff is not interested in taking a new graduate student for Fall 2021.

Areas of Expertise/Research Interests

  • Self and Identity
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Cultural Psychology
  • Cultural Neuroscience
  • Globalization and Psychology

Current Research and Projects

We live in an increasingly globalized world where people are exposed to many diverse social and cultural identities. Increased diversity shapes behavior at the individual level, with people integrating new cultures into their identity, and at the group level, with increased interaction between people with diverse identities and cultures. The changing cultural landscape has prompted me to investigate how identities and cultures influence how people think about their selves and interact with others.

The goal of my research is to foster more positive interpersonal and intergroup relations through a better understanding of these interactions between identities and cultures. In pursuing this aim, my work is organized around two central questions:

1) How do individual differences in identity management influence interpersonal/intergroup relations, tolerance, and cognition?
2) How do contextual and biological factors influence adaption to new cultures and adherence to culturally normative behaviors?

I study these questions in cross-cultural contexts, with people in the United States and from around the world. I employ diverse methods, including: laboratory experiments, qualitative research, and online studies. Currently, I am working with an honor's student to explore how religious and political identities influence tolerance towards political outgroup members. Additionally, I am working on an interview study that seeks to understand what it means to have multiple selves (e.g., gender, social class, occupation, member of a club or team) and how people integrate these many selves. Finally, I am conducting a series of negotiation studies to understand how identities influence negotiation and interpersonal conflict.


  • PhD, University of Michigan, Psychology (Personality & Social Contexts Area)
  • MA, Brandeis University, Psychology
  • BA, Colorado College, Psychology

Selected Publications

  • Huff, S.T., Saleem, M., & Rivas-Drake, D. (in press). Examining the role of majority group attitudes and bicultural identity integration on bicultural students' behavioral responses towards White Americans. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.
  • Huff, S.T.* & Hall, M.P.* (2018). Do votes speak louder than motives? Moral judgments and intolerance in the 2016 presidential election. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy. *Equal contribution
  • Tompson, S., Huff, S.T., Yoon, C., King, T., Liberzon, I., & Kitayama, S. (2018). The dopamine D4 receptor gene (DRD4) moderates a cultural difference in emotional experience. Culture and Brain.
  • Huff, S.T., Lee, F., & Hong, Y.Y. (2017). Bicultural and generalized identity integration predicts interpersonal tolerance. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 48, 644-666.
  • Kitayama, S., King, A.P, Yoon, C., Tompson, S., Huff, S., & Liberzon, I. (2014). The dopamine receptor gene (DRD4) moderates cultural difference in independent versus interdependent social orientation. Psychological Science, 25, 1169-1177.
  • Huff, S., Yoon, C., Lee, F., Mandadi, A., & Gutchess, A.H. (2013). Self-referential processing and encoding in bicultural individuals. Culture and Brain, 1, 16-33.

Full publication list here.