Our Faculty

Clare Mehta

Associate Professor of Psychology

Contact Information



Office Hours

Office: Administration Building, Room 421-B

Office hours: Monday, 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.; by appointment also


PhD Psychology, Life Span Concentration, West Virginia University 2008; MS Psychology, Life Span Concentration, West Virginia University 2006; MRes Education, University of Bath, UK 2006

What I'm Working On

Courses I Teach

PSYCH 2304 Adulthood and Aging
PSYCH 2403 Adolescent Development
PSYCH 2303 Child Development

Publications + Presentations

  • Keener, E.J., & Mehta, C.M. (In press). Sandra Bem: Revolutionary and generative feminist psychologist. Sex Roles.
  • Mehta, C.M. Hojjat M., Smith, K.R., & Ayotte B. (2016). Associations between gender segregation and gender-typed traits in college students. Sex Roles.
  • Mehta, C.M., & Dementieva, Y. (2016). "The contextual specificity of gender: Femininity and masculinity in college students' same- and other-gender peer contexts". Sex Roles
  • Mehta, C.M., Walls, C., Blood, E., Feldman, H., & Shrier, L.A. (2016). Affect and intimacy in emerging adult's romantic relationships. Journal of Adult Development, 23, 101-110.
  • McDonell, A.M, & Mehta, C.M. (2016). We could never be friends: Representing cross-sex friendship on celebrity gossip websites. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, 5, 74-84.
  • Kitts, R.L, Koleoglou, K.J., Holland, J. Nang, Q., Hutchinson, E., Mehta, C.M., Tran, C., & Fishman, L. (2015). The establishment of a novel program to address the career and professional development needs of research assistants at an academic hospital. JMIR: Medical Education 1, e13.
  • Mehta, C.M. (2015). Gender in context: Considering variability in Eagly and Wood's traditions of gender identity. Sex Roles, 73, 490-496. Invited manuscript
  • Mehta, C.M., Alfonso Barry, J., Delaney, R., & Ayotte, B.J. (2014). Associations between gender segregation, gender identity, and substance use in college students. Sex Roles, 70, 98-109.
  • Mehta, C.M., Walls, C., Blood, E., & Shrier, L.A. (2014). Associations between affect, context, and sexual desire in depressed young women. Journal of Sex Research, 51, 577-585. 
  • Keener, E., Mehta, C.M., & Strough, J. (2013). Should educators and parents encourage other-sex interactions? Sex segregation and sexism. Gender and Education, 25, 813-883.
  • Mehta, C.M., Keener, E., & Shrier, L. A. (2013). Perceived advantages and disadvantages of being a female graduate student in the US and the UK. Gender and Education, 25, 37-55.
  • Sunner. L. E., Walls, C., Blood, E.A., Mehta, C.M., Feldman, H., & Shrier, L. (2013). Feasibility and utility of momentary sampling of sex events in young couples. Journal of Sex Research, 50, 688-696.
  • Mehta, C.M., Sunner, L.A., Head, S., Crosby, R., & Shrier, L. (2011). "Sex is not something you do with someone you don't care about": Adolescent girls' definitions of sex. Journal of Adolescent and Pediatric Gynecology, 24, 266-271.
  • Mehta, C.M., & Strough, J. (2010) Gender-typing and gender segregation in adolescence. Sex Roles, 63, 251-263.
  • Mehta, C.M., & Strough, J. (2009). Sex segregation in friendships and normative developmental contexts across the lifespan. Developmental Review, 29, 201-220.
  • Strough, J., Mehta, C.M., McFall, J., & Schuller, K. (2008). Do older and younger adults make different decisions about sunk costs? Psychological Sciences, 19, 650-652.
  • Doppler, E.E., Harkins, D., & Mehta, C.M. (2008) Emerging empowerment: Conflict resolution intervention and preschool teachers' reports of conflict behavior. Early Childhood Education and Development, 19, 885-906.

Research Focus

As a social developmental psychologist who studies gender, my goal is to meaningfully contribute to scientific knowledge on gender and social development across the lifespan by conducting quality theoretically-driven work. Broadly defined, my research interests are related to how sex (biological characteristics of a person related to reproduction), gender (culturally socialized characteristics believed to be appropriate for males and females; Unger, 1979), and related social processes (e.g. sex segregation), influence adolescents' and young adults' beliefs and behaviors. I am currently investigating the contextual specificity of gender - how femininity and masculinity vary across time and contexts.

Based on these interests, I have conducted research examining women's career trajectories, influences of sex and gender on romantic and sexual relationships, and the relationship between sex segregation, and gender-typed traits and behaviors among adolescents and young adults. I am currently investigating the contextual specificity of gender - how femininity and masculinity vary across time and contexts. My research is guided by two complimentary theoretical perspectives: (1) a lifespan theoretical perspective, which contends that development occurs across the lifespan within a larger socio-historical context; and (2) a social-constructivist model of gender development that contends that gender-typed characteristics are best understood as created and maintained by the transaction of the individual and the immediate context (Deaux & Major, 1987). 

To answer my research questions, I used both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. 

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