Office: BH 467
Dr. Brannon is a social psychologist with research interests in the areas of persuasion (changing attitudes) and compliance/social influence (changing behavior). One recent area of research examines what factors influence people’s spirituality and values, and how spirituality and values influence people’s behavior and their physical and emotional well-being. Another area of interest is how to promote prosocial (helping) behaviors. These areas of research focus on “positive psychology,” or how to bring out what is good in people.
Dr. Brannon conducts “full-cycle” social psychological research, which means that she conducts basic research studying the processes of persuasion and compliance and extends this research to applied areas. Her two main applied research interests are health psychology and consumer psychology. Much of her current research deals with the interface of these two areas, "social marketing." Social marketing is a relatively recent trend in the applied literature in which researchers apply tried-and-true marketing and social influence techniques to the improvement of social problems (for example, encouraging health-promoting behaviors). Although Dr. Brannon is interested in conducting research to address a variety of social problems, much of her current work is in the area of health persuasion, especially with respect to developing more effective public service announcements promoting health behaviors (for example, discouraging irresponsible sexual practices and binge drinking among college students, and encouraging behaviors such as exercise and eating a healthy diet). She is also interested in applying her research to the workplace (occupational health) and other settings. For example, one recent series of field studies examines how to improve food safety practices among restaurant employees.
Dr. Brannon uses a variety of approaches to address these issues. She enjoys interdisciplinary research and frequently integrates ideas from other fields into her studies, in particular, concepts from personality psychology (e.g., self-schemas and various individual difference/personality variables) and cognitive psychology (e.g., schemas, prototypicality, and various message processing variables). For example, several studies have examined how to tailor persuasive messages to recipients’ personalities in order to improve processing of the messages (increase exposure, attention, elaboration, and memory of the messages). However, much of her research also focuses on traditional social psychological variables as well.
Dr. Brannon works with several students in the areas described above, in addition to independent research projects suggested by students. Her research interests are very broad, and she is open to conducting research in a variety of areas. She also enjoys collaborating with students who have a primary focus of study in other areas (for example, cognitive or industrial/organizational psychology). Although each student’s participation is unique, students frequently are introduced to the research being conducted by members of the laboratory by contributing to an ongoing study, and then moving onto more independent research. However, some students are able to begin independent research immediately. Students regularly are co-authors on the presentations and publications to which they contribute, and if appropriate, first authors. Given that Dr. Brannon has interests in both basic research and applied areas, she supports and prepares students who are interested in both academic (teaching and/or research) and non-academic (applied) jobs. The focus is on helping students be successful and achieve whatever their individual goals are. Dr. Brannon can be contacted by phone (785-532-0604) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by students who are interested in working in her lab.
- Shanklin, C., Roberts, K., Barrett, E., & Brannon, L. "Improving food safety practices of restaurant employees using the Theory of Planned Behavior." U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA, #2004-511110-02170), $482,763.
Representative Publications from Each Primary Research Area
Applied Persuasion Research: Health (* Indicates student co-author)
- Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (1993). Comment on report of HIV infection in rural Florida: Failure of instructions to correct for gross underestimation of phantom sex partners in perception of AIDS risk. New England Journal of Medicine, 328, 1351-1352.
- Brannon, L. A., & *McCabe, A. E. (2003). Schema-derived persuasion and perception of AIDS risk. Health Marketing Quarterly, 20(2), 31-48.
- Brannon, L. A., & *Carson, K. L. (2003). Nursing expertise and cognitive structure influence medical decision making. Applied Nursing Research, 16(4), 287-290.
- Brannon, L. A., & *Carson, K. L. (2003). The representativeness heuristic influences nurses' decision-making. Applied Nursing Research, 16(3), 201-204.
- *Pease, M. E. Brannon, L. A., & *Pilling, V. K. (2006). Increasing selective exposure to health messages by targeting person versus behavior schemas. Health Communication, 19(3), 231-240.
- *Gopalan, N., & Brannon, L. A. (2006). Increasing family members' appreciation of family caregivers’ stress. Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and Applied, 140(20), 85-94.
- *Fea, C. J., & Brannon, L. A. (2006). Self-objectification and compliment type: Effects on negative mood. Body Image: An International Journal of Research, 3(2), 183-188.
- Brannon, L. A. & *Pilling, V. K. (in press). Promoting responsible drinking among underage drinkers. Health Marketing Quarterly.
- *Pilling, V. K., & Brannon, L. A. (in press). Assessing college students’ attitudes toward responsible drinking messages to identify promising binge drinking intervention strategies. Health Communication.
- *Pilling, V.K., Brannon, L.A., Shanklin, C.W., *Howells, A.D., & *Roberts, K.R. (in press). Identifying specific beliefs to target to improve restaurant employees’ intentions for performing three important food safety behaviors. Journal of the American Dietetic Association.
Applied Persuasion Research: Consumer (* Indicates student co-author)
- Brock, T. C., Brannon, L. A., & Bridgwater, C. (1990). Message effectiveness can be increased by matching appeals to recipients' self-schemas: Laboratory demonstrations and a national field experiment. In S. Agres, J. Edell, & T. Dubitsky (Eds.), Emotion in advertising: Theoretical and practical explorations. Westport, CT: Quorum Books, pp. 285-315.
- Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (1994). Test of Schema Correspondence Theory of persuasion: Effects of matching an appeal to actual, ideal, and product "selves." In E. M. Clark, T. C. Brock, & D. W. Stewart (Eds.), Attention, attitude, and affect in response to advertising. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., 169-188.
- Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (2001). Limiting time for responding enhances behavior corresponding to the merits of compliance appeals: Refutations of heuristic-cue theory in service and consumer settings. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 10(3), 135-146.
- Brannon, L. A., & *McCabe, A. E. (2001). Time-restricted sales appeals: The importance of offering real value. Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quarterly, 2(4), 47-52.
- Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (2006). Measuring the prototypicality of product categories and exemplars: Implications of schema correspondence theory. In L. R. Kahle & C. H. Kim (Eds.). Creating images and the psychology of marketing communication. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., pp. 31-46.
- Brannon, L. A., *Pilling, V. K., *Roberts, K. R., Shanklin, C. W., & *Howells, A. D. (in press). Appreciation of food safety practices based on level of experience. Journal of Foodservice Business Research.
- *Pilling, V. K., Brannon, L. A., *Roberts, K. R., Shanklin, C. W., & *Howells, A. D. (in press). Using the Theory of Planned Behavior to elicit restaurant employee beliefs about food safety: Using surveys versus focus groups. Journal of Foodservice Business Research.
Basic Persuasion Research: Processes Underlying Persuasion and Compliance (* Indicates student co-author)
- Brock, T. C., & Brannon, L. A. (1992). Liberalization of Commodity Theory. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 13, 135-144.
- Boninger, D. S., Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (1993). Effects of transmitter tuning on attitude change persistence: An examination of alternative explanations. Psychological Science, 4, 211-213.
- Brannon, L. A., Hershberger, P. J., & Brock, T. C. (1999). Timeless demonstrations of Parkinson's First Law. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 6(1), 148-156.
- Eagly, A. H., *Kulesa P., Brannon, L. A., *Shaw-Barnes, K., & *Hutson-Comeaux, S. (2000). Why counterattitudinal messages are as memorable as proattitudinal messages: The importance of active defense against attack. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26(11), 1392-1408.
- Brannon, L. A., & Brock, T. C. (2001). Scarcity claims elicit extreme responding to persuasive messages: Role of cognitive elaboration. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 27(3), 365-375.
- *Hackworth, C. A., & Brannon, L. A. (2006). Understanding and managing others: The impact of social intelligence upon social influence. Communication Research Reports, 23(3), 1-8.
- Brannon, L. A., *Tagler, M. J., & Eagly, A. H. (in press). The moderating role of attitude strength in selective exposure to information. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.
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