Applied Social Psychology and Gender Research


The „Applied Social Psychology and Gender Research“ Lab, supervised by Prof. Dr. Friederike Eyssel, researches social psychological aspects of human-machine-interaction. Moreover, the work group investigates determinants and consequences of gender stereotypes, sexism, sexual objectification, and sexual harassment.


Focusing on psychological aspects of human-machine interaction, we conduct empirical studies on evaluation, acceptance, and usability of robots and technical systems in everyday life (e.g., smart environments homes, education). In this context, we investigate attitudes towards robots and intelligent systems, the perceived quality of human-machine interaction, and user behavior during the interaction. Further, we identify key factors of user acceptance of technology and their willingness to use novel technologies. By doing so, we contribute to a better understanding of psychological mechanisms that promote a successful human-technology interaction.

In our gender research we study gender stereotypes, sexism, sexual objectification and sexual harassment. For instance, we investigate predictors and consequences of sexual objectification. Functions of sexual objectification are examined at the individual, interpersonal, and the societal level. Relatedly, we investigate motives of sexual harassment, e.g., the role of harassment myths.  We use a psycholinguistic approach and eye-tracking methodology to examine the influence of gender stereotypical language on language processing and gaze behavior.


Overview of research topics

  • Assessment and change of attitudes towards technical systems
  • Acceptance of smart home technology
  • Ethical aspects of developing novel technologies
  • Social categorization processes in human-robot interaction
  • Determinants of anthropomorphism and dehumanization
  • Robots in educational contexts
  • Cooperative learning with robots
  • Gender stereotypes in language processing
  • Sexism
  • Sexual objectification
  • Sexual harassment and harassment myths