Matthias R. Mehl, PhD

Associate Professor

Email Address: 
Phone Number: 
(520) 626-2374
(520) 621-9306

Research Information

Research Program: 
Cancer Prevention and Control
Member Status: 
Research Member
Year of Membership Acceptance: 
Summary of Research Activity: 

I am a social/health psychologist interested in the role that people’s daily social lives play in coping with upheavals. A thread that runs through my research is an emphasis on ecological validity and the development of behavioral assessment strategies that can complement psychology’s reliance on self-reports. My work in this area has focused on naturalistic observation and quantitative text analysis

Selected Publications: 
Mehl, M. R., Vazire, S., Holleran, S. E., & Clark, C. S. (2010). Eavesdropping on happiness: Well-being is related to having less small talk and more substantive conversations. Psychological Science, 21, 539–541.
Mehl, M. R. (2007). Eavesdropping on health: A naturalistic observation approach for social-health research. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 1, 359–380.
Mehl, M. R., & Holleran, S. E. (2007). An empirical analysis of the obtrusiveness of and participants’ compliance with the Electronically Activated Recorder (EAR). European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 23, 248-257.
Mehl, M. R., Vazire, S., Ramírez-Esparza, N., Slatcher, R. B., & Pennebaker, J. W. (2007). Are women really more talkative than men? Science, 317, 82.
Mehl, M. R. (2006). The lay assessment of sub-clinical depression in daily life. Psychological Assessment, 18, 340-345.
Mehl, M. R., Gosling, S. D., & Pennebaker, J. W. (2006). Personality in its natural habitat: Manifestations and implicit folk theories of personality in daily life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 90, 862–877.
Mehl, M. R., & Pennebaker, J. W. (2003). The social dynamics of a cultural upheaval: Social interactions surrounding September 11, 2001. Psychological Science, 14, 579–585.
Mehl, M. R., & Pennebaker, J. W. (2003). The sounds of social life: A psychometric analysis of students’ daily social environments and natural conversations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 857–870.
Mehl, M. R., Pennebaker, J. W., Crow, M. D., Dabbs, J., & Price, J. H. (2001). The Electronically Activated Recorder (EAR): A device for sampling naturalistic daily activities and conver¬sations. Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, and Computers, 33, 517–523.
Collaborative Research: 
09/09 to 09/11 National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine; Title: “Mechanisms of Meditation” (3R01AT004698-01A1S1, PI: Dr. Raison), Role: Co-investigator, PI on Subcontract, Amount of Subcontract: $297,753.
07/09 to 06/11 National Cancer Institute; Title: “The Daily Interactions of Couples Coping with Breast Cancer: With Whom, About What, and Links to Adjustment” (1R03CA137975-01A1), Role: PI, Amount: $147,465.

Professional Information


08/06 Young Investigator Travel Award of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft [German Research Foundation] for traveling to a conference in Germany 04/07 The Honors College Outstanding Professor and Advisor of Psychology Award; University of Arizona 05/07 Social and Behavioral Sciences Research Institute Faculty Summer Research Grant Development Award, University of Arizona 05/07 Foreign Travel Grant, Office of International Affairs, University of Arizona 01/08 Listed in Dialogue, the Society for Personality and Social Psychology’s newsletter, as one of the ten most cited Assistant Professors in Social/Personality Psychology 09/08 Elected onto the Board of the Association for Research in Personality.

Academic Information

Master's Degree: 
University of Erlangen
Undergraduate School: 
University of Erlangen