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Justin J. Lehmiller

Justin J. Lehmiller

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I am an Assistant Professor of Social Psychology and the Director of the Social Psychology Graduate Program at Ball State University, where I teach and conduct research in the areas of relationships, prejudice, and sexuality. I am also a Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute and run a popular blog entitled "Sex and Psychology" that is designed to present the science of sex, love, and relationships to the public in an engaging and accessible way.

To date, I have published more than 40 scholarly works, which includes several articles published in the leading journals on sex and relationships, multiple book chapters, and two textbooks. Most of my research publications fall into one of two areas. One of these areas examines commitment processes in interpersonal relationships, including both romantic relationships as well as casual sexual relationships (e.g., "friends with benefits"). I am interested in the factors that influence how commitment to these relationships develops and changes over time, as well as the consequences of commitment for the health and well-being of the partners involved. My other main area of research concerns prejudice and discrimination, especially as they pertain to sexuality and relationships. My recent work on this topic has focused on how perceptions of bias against one's sexual orientation and relationship status influence physical and psychological well-being and engagement in risky health behaviors. Across all of this work, my goal is to conduct theoretically grounded research that has the potential to address important social problems.

My research has been featured prominently in numerous media outlets, including the Huffington Post, Psychology Today, Men’s Health, The Globe and Mail, and The Sunday Times. I have also appeared on several episodes of the television program Taboo on the National Geographic Channel and am a frequent guest on programs such as HuffPost Live and RadioMD. I also do freelance writing for major publications, including Playboy, VICE, and other media outlets.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Close Relationships
  • Gender Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Prejudice and Stereotyping
  • Sexuality, Sexual Orientation

Online Studies:

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Journal Articles:

  • Agnew, C. R., Hoffman, A. M., Lehmiller, J. J., & Duncan, N. T. (2007). From the interpersonal to the international: Understanding commitment to the "War on Terror." Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33, 1559-1571.
  • Lehmiller, J. J. (2017). Controversial issues in human sexuality research: The state of the science. European Psychologist, 22, 1-4. doi:10.1027/1016-9040/a000286
  • Lehmiller, J. J. & (2015). A comparison of sexual health history and outcomes among monogamous and consensually non-monogamous sexual partners. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 12, 2022-2028. doi:10.1111/jsm.12987
  • Lehmiller, J. J. (2012). Perceived marginalization and its association with physical and psychological health. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 29, 451-469.
  • Lehmiller, J. J. (2010). Differences in relationship investments between gay and heterosexual men. Personal Relationships, 17, 81-96.
  • Lehmiller, J. J. (2009). Secret romantic relationships: Consequences for personal and relational well-being. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35, 1452-1466.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Agnew, C. R. (2008). Commitment in age-gap heterosexual romantic relationships: A test of evolutionary and socio-cultural predictions. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 32, 74-82.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Agnew, C. R. (2007). Perceived marginalization and the prediction of romantic relationship stability. Journal of Marriage and Family, 69, 1036-1049.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Agnew, C. R. (2006). Marginalized relationships: The impact of social disapproval on romantic relationship commitment. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 32, 40-51.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Ioerger, M. (2014). Social networking smartphone applications and sexual health outcomes among men who have sex with men. PLoS ONE, 9(1): e86603. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0086603
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Konkel, K. E. (2013). Commitment to the GLBT community: An investment model analysis of its antecedents and consequences. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 43(6), 1301-1312.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., Law, A. T., & Tormala, T. T. (2010). The effect of self-affirmation on sexual prejudice. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 276-285.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Schmitt, M. T. (2008). Intergroup attitudes and values in response to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 14, 259-274.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., & Schmitt, M. T. (2007). Group domination and inequality in context: Evidence for the unstable meanings of social dominance and authoritarianism. European Journal of Social Psychology, 37, 704-724.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., VanderDrift, L. E., & Kelly, J. R. (2014). Sexual communication, satisfaction, and condom use behavior in friends with benefits and romantic partners. The Journal of Sex Research, 51, 74-85.
  • Lehmiller, J. J., VanderDrift, L. E., & Kelly J. R. (2011). Sex differences in approaching friends with benefits relationships. The Journal of Sex Research, 48, 275-284.
  • Schmitt, M. T., Lehmiller, J. J., & Walsh, A. L. (2007). The role of heterosexual identity threat in differential support for same-sex "civil unions" versus "marriages." Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 10, 443-455.
  • VanderDrift, L. E., Lehmiller, J. J., & Kelly J. R. (2012). Commitment in friends with benefits relationships: Implications for relational and safer sex outcomes. Personal Relationships, 19, 1-13.

Courses Taught:

  • Attitudes
  • Counseling Applications of Social Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Human Sexuality
  • Intergroup Relations and Processes
  • Psychology of Sexual Orientation
  • Research Methods
  • Social Cognition
  • Social Psychology

Justin J. Lehmiller
Department of Counseling Psychology, Social Psychology, & Counseling
Ball State University
Teachers College, Room 605
Muncie, Indiana 47306
United States

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