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Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Steve Stemler

Steve Stemler

  • Media Contact

My chief concern is with the identification and maximization of human potential. I am deeply disturbed by the tremendous waste of talent that I see happening every day across a wide variety of contexts. I believe that assessment can play a critical role in helping us to scientifically identify and capitalize on individuals' strengths and compensate for their weaknesses at both an individual and group level. Consequently, some of my research focuses on new approaches to personnel selection/college admissions testing and grapples with issues related to the assessment of achievement, ability, and aptitude.

Schools are one place where people go to develop their abilities. Therefore, I spend a lot of time investigating the specific skills and abilities schools purport to value and develop. In my research I have found that there is a fundamental disconnect between the abilities schools claim to value and those that students are held accountable for by standardized tests. I believe that the problem is that we, as a field, have not yet developed adequate measures of these broader, non-cognitive constructs that tend to be highly valued by institutions and individuals (e.g., intercultural competence, creativity).

My program of research focuses on systematically investigating the purposes of school, from pre-kindergarten through higher education, and attempting to create better, more innovative new measures that are aligned with these broad purposes. Some of the measures being developed in my lab relate to the assessment of cultural competence, ethical reasoning, creativity (mental flexibility and adaptability), social intelligence, and practical intelligence.

Primary Interests:

  • Aggression, Conflict, Peace
  • Ethics and Morality
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Nonverbal Behavior
  • Personality, Individual Differences
  • Research Methods, Assessment

Research Group or Laboratory:


Journal Articles:

Other Publications:

Courses Taught:

  • Advanced Seminar in Psychological Measurement
  • Foundations of Contemporary Psychology
  • Psychological Measurement
  • Psychological Statistics
  • Psychology of Conflict Resolution

Steve Stemler
Department of Psychology
Wesleyan University
207 High Street
Middletown, Connecticut 06459
United States

  • Phone: (860) 685-2207
  • Fax: (860) 685-2761

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