Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Joanne V. Wood

Joanne V. Wood

  • SPN Mentor

My current research concerns dispositional self-esteem—one’s overall feelings about oneself—and how self-esteem is perpetuated in daily life. In particular, I focus on self-esteem differences in emotion regulation and close relationships. My collaborators and I have found that people with high self-esteem are more likely than those with low self-esteem to try to improve their moods when they are sad, as well as to savor their moods when they are happy. Lows sometimes even try to dampen their happiness. Such differences in emotion regulation probably help to maintain self-esteem differences. Our current studies ask such questions as: How do partners in romantic relationships influence each other’s moods? Do lows and highs differ in how they react to their partner’s moods? After a success, why do lows return to their usual level of self-worth? How do lows and highs differ in their emotional expressiveness and self-disclosure to other people?

Primary Interests:

  • Close Relationships
  • Emotion, Mood, Affect
  • Life Satisfaction, Well-Being
  • Motivation, Goal Setting
  • Personality, Individual Differences
  • Self and Identity

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Journal Articles:

  • Conner Christensen, T. S., Wood, J. V., & Feldman Barrett, L. (2003). Remembering everyday experience through the prism of self-esteem. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29, 51-62.
  • Dodgson, P. G., & Wood, J. V. (1998). Self-esteem and the cognitive accessibility of strengths and weaknesses after failure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75, 178-197.
  • Giordano, C., Wood, J. V., & Michela, J. L. (2000). Depressive personality styles, dysphoria, and social comparisons in everyday life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 79(3), 438-451.
  • Heimpel, S. A., Elliot, A., & Wood, J. V. (in press). Self-esteem and approach/avoidance orientation. Journal of Personality.
  • Heimpel, S. A., Wood, J. V., Marshall, M., & Brown, J. (2002). Do people with low self-esteem really want to feel better? Self-esteem differences in motivation to repair negative moods. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82(1), 128-147.
  • Wood, J. V., Heimpel, S. A., & Michela, J. L. (2003). Savoring versus dampening: Self-esteem differences in regulating positive affect. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 85(3), 566-580.
  • Wood, J. V., Heimpel, S. A., Newby-Clark, I., & Ross, M. (2005). Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory: Self-esteem differences in the experience and anticipation of success. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 89, 764-780.
  • Wood, J. V., Michela, J. L., & Giordano, C. (2000). Downward comparison in everyday life: Reconciling self-enhancement models with the mood-cognition priming model. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 79, 563-579.

Other Publications:

  • Wood, J. V., Anthony, D. B., & Foddis, W. F. (2006). Should people with low self-esteem strive for high self-esteem? In M. H. Kernis (Ed.), Self-esteem issues and answers: A source book of current perspectives (pp. 288-296). New York: Psychology Press.
  • Wood, J. V., & Wilson, A. (2002). How important is social comparison? In M. R. Leary & J. P. Tangney (Eds.), Handbook of Self and Identity. New York: Guilford.

Courses Taught:

  • Personality
  • Research Methods
  • Research Methods for Graduate Students
  • Social Cognition
  • Theory and Research on Self-Esteem

Joanne V. Wood
Department of Psychology
University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1

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