Graduate Students

Christopher Thorstenson


Graduate Student
Entry Year: 2012-2013
Faculty Mentor(s): Andrew Elliot

497 Meliora Hall
(585) 276-7685
Fax: (585) 273-1100
c.thorstenson@rochester.edu

Research Overview

I am primarily interested in the social information that is conveyed through changes in facial coloration. I am exploring how the face changes color during emotion expression and social interaction, the underlying hemodynamic mechanisms responsible for such changes, and how these color changes are perceived and used as information by others.

I am also interested in the remote measurement of skin-color properties as indices of physiological states, and how emotion, mood, and clinical disorders influence perception.

Selected Publications

Published Manuscripts

  • Pazda, A. D., Thorstenson, C. A., Elliot, A. J., & Perrett, D. I. (2016). Women's facial redness increases their perceived attractiveness: Mediation through perceived healthiness. Perception. doi: 0301006616633386
  • Thorstenson, C. A., (2015). Functional equivalence of the color red and enacted avoidance behavior? Replication and empirical integration, Social Psychology. doi: 10/1027/1864-9335/a000245

Manuscripts under review & in preparation

  • Thorstenson, C.A., Elliot, A.J., Pazda, A.D., Perrett, D.I., & Xiao, D. (under review). Emotion-color associations in the context of the face.
  • Thorstenson, C.A., Pazda, A.D., & Elliot, A.J. (under review). Subjective perception is greater for faces versus nonfaces.
  • Thorstenson, C. A., Pazda, A. D., Elliot, A. J., & Perrett, D. I. (under review). Facial redness increases perceived attractiveness for male targets: Mediation by perceived healthiness.
  • Young, S. G., Thorstenson, C. A., & Pazda, A. D. (under review). Facial redness, expressions, amnd masculinity influence perceptions of anger and health.
  • Pazda, A. D., & Thorstenson, C. A. (under review). High-chroma colors increase perceived extraversion and openness for zero-acquaintance judgments.

Conference Presentations

  • Defontes, C., Reese, M., Thorstenson, C. A., Young, S. G., & Pazda, A. D. (2016, May). Facial redness influences social judgments differently depending on rating characteristics. Poster presented at the 3rd annual SPAWN CONFERENCE, Syracuse, NY.
  • Weissman, C., Mukherjee, l., Thorstenson, C. A., Pazda, A. D., & Elliot, A. J. (2016, May). Facial redness increases women's attractiveness: Mediation through perceived healthiness. Poster presented at the 3rd annual SPAWN CONFERENCE, Syracuse, NY.
  • Thorstenson, C.A.., Pazda, A.D., & Elliot, A.J., (2016, January). Faces Enhance Subjective Perception of Color Differences. Poster to be presented at the 17th annual SPSP meeting, San Diego, CA.
  • Boerner, A., Thorstenson, C.A.., Pazda, A.D., & Elliot, A.J. (2015, May). Faces enhance perception of color differences. Poster presented at the 2nd annual SPAWN conference, Buffalo NY.
  • Bendesky, S., Thorstenson, C.A.., Pazda, A.D., & Elliot, A.J. (2015, May). Sadness impairs color perception. Poster presented at the 2nd annual SPAWN conference, Buffalo, NY.
  • Hallagan, C., Johnson, E., Pazda, A.D., Thorstenson, C.A.., & Elliot, A.J. (2015, May). Bold colors and bold personalities; High chroma colors increase perceived extraversion and openness for zero-acquaintance judgments. Poster presented at the 2nd annual SPAWN conference, Buffalo, NY.
  • Brimmer, M., Pazda, A.D., Thorstenson, C.A.., & Elliot, A.J. (2015, May). The redder the better: Facial redness on men increases their attractiveness. Poster presented at the 2nd annual SPAWN conference, Buffalo, NY.
  • Thorstenson, C.A.., Pazda, A.D., & Elliot, A.J. (2015, February). Mood Influences Color Perception. Poster presented at the 16th annual SPSP meeting, Long Beach, CA.
  • Oh, D., Hernandez, E., Thorstenson, C. A., Pazda, A. D., & Elliot, A. E. (2014, May). Depression and color perception. Poster presented at the 1st Annual SPAWN conference, Rochester, NY.
  • Ortiz, J., Bendesky, D., Thorstenson, C. A., & Elliot, A. E. (2014, May). Facial color-emotion associations. Poster presented at the 1st Annual SPAWN conference, Rochester, NY.
  • Thorstenson, C. A., Steele, K.M., & Elliot, A. E. (2013, May). Red and Enacted Avoidance Influence Visual Attention. Poster presented at the 25th annual APS Convention, Washington, DC.
  • Steele, K. M., Thorstenson, C. A., Sugg, K., Gurgainous, E., Stecher, A., Putnam, E.,& Antolic, E. (2011, November). Red, white, & blue: Does background color affect solving anagrams? Poster presented at the 52nd annual meeting of The Psychonomic Society, Seattle, WA.
  • Thorstenson, C. A., Putnam, E., Ayers, A., Tracy, S., Antolic, E., & Steele, K. M. (2011, April). Does Color Influence Anagram Solution Speed or Problem Solving Strategy? Poster presented at the meeting of the North Carolina Psychological Association, Chapel Hill, NC.
  • Boulter, L., Eastis, C., Thorstenson, C. A., Shumolis, A., Thompson, A., & Beck, H. P. (2011, March). College Persistence Questionnaire predicts freshman retention at Catawba College. Poster presented at the meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association, Jacksonville, FL.

Teaching

  • Instructor: Graduate Teaching Workshops (co-instructor, 2016)
  • Instructor: Abnormal Psychology (UR; Summer 2015)
  • Instructor: Introduction to Psychology - Historical, Social, and Scientific Foundations (ASU; Fall 2011, Spring 2012)
  • Teaching Assistant: Data Analysis: Regression (Spring 2016)
  • Teaching Assistant: Psychology of Gender (UR; Fall 2015)
  • Teaching Assistant: Introduction to Psychology (Fall, 2014)
  • Teaching Assistant: Introduction to Statistics in Psychology (Fall 2013)
  • Teaching Assistant: Social Psychology and Individual Differences (UR; Spring 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
  • Guest Lectures: Introduction to Psychology (Spring 2011, Summer 2016)
  • Guest Lectures: Teaching Psychology (Spring 2012)

Professional Honors and Awards

  • SPSP Graduate Student Travel Award (2015)
  • Dean of Graduate Studies Travel Award - University of Rochester (2015)
  • Franc Grum Scholarship – Rochester Institute of Technology (2014-15)
  • Provost Fellowship – University of Rochester (2012-2017)
  • Wiley F. Smith Endowment Award – Appalachian State University (2011)
  • Cratis D. Williams Graduate Student Research Grant – Appalachian State University (2011)

Additional

Professional Activities

Ad-hoc Reviewer:

  • Color Research and Application
  • Evolutionary Psychology
  • Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied
  • Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
  • PLOS ONE

Education

  • Ph.D. - Social & Personality Psychology - University of Rochester, anticipated 2017
  • M.S. - Color Science - Rochester Institute of Technology, anticipated 2016
  • M.A. - Experimental Psychology - Appalachian State University, 2012
  • B.S. - Psychology, Philosophy - Florida State University, 2009