Researchers in the Dynamic Interactions in Cognition and Emotion Lab investigate how people process media messages under situations of emotional and cognitive overload. We work under an assumption that mediated message content and form can elicit automatic emotional and cognitive responses which then can affect how these messages are encoded and used to form opinions and make decisions. We test our hypotheses with print, audio, television, and on-line content in such areas as health, politics, pro-social campaigns, and advertising.
Some specific topics we are studying include: how people respond to junk food advertising, how people select news stories on-line, how and what people encode emotionally charged media events, how people remember sources of political information. We use both self-report and psychophysiological tools to collect our data.