Faculty » David C. Funder

The principal current research in our lab, supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, concerns the assessment of the psychologically important aspects of situations. We developed the Riverside Situational Q-sort (RSQ) and have used this instrument to assess situations experienced by college students in daily life, and the correlates between elements of situations, personality, and behavior. Articles introducing and using this instrument have been published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (Sherman, Nave & Funder, 2010) and the Journal of Research in Personality (Sherman, Nave & Funder, 2012). We have also used translated versions of the RSQ to compare situational experience across cultures.  An initial published study (Guillaume et al., 2016) compared 20 countries; a larger project currently in progress aims to gather data from 63 countries around the world.  For an overview of our research on situations, see this article.

Our lab also has a long-standing interest in the accuracy of personality judgment.  This research program is based on the Realistic Accuracy Model (Funder, 1995, 1999, 2012). Theoretically, the model proposes that accurate personality judgment requires a four-stage process in which (1) relevant information is emitted by the target which (2) becomes available to the judge, who then (3) detects this information and (4) utilizes it correctly. Empirically, four moderator variables make accuracy more or less likely, including properties of (1) the judge (e.g., judgmental ability), (2) the target (e.g., judgability), (3) the trait being judged (e.g., visibility), and (4) the information upon which the judgment is based (e.g., its quantity or quality). For a recent summary of this research, click here.

Selected Publications

Funder, D.C. (2016). The Personality Puzzle (7th ed.). New York: W.W. Norton.

Guillaume, E., Baranski, E., Todd, E., Bastian, B., Bronin, I., Ivanova, C., Cheng, J.T., de Kock, F.S., Denissen, J.J.A., Gallardo-Pujol, D., Halama, Pl, Han, G.Q., Bae, J., Moon, J., Hong, R.Y., Hřebíčková, M., Graf, S., Izdebski, P., Lundmann, L., Penke, L., Perugini, M., Costantini, G., Rauthmann, J., Ziegler, M., Realo, A., Elme, L., Sato, T., Kawamoto, S., Szarota, P., Tracy, J.L., van Aken, M.A.G., Yang, Y., & Funder, D.C. (2016). The world at 7: Comparing the experience of situations across 20 countries. Journal of Personality, 84(4), 493-509.

Funder, D.C. (2016). Taking situations seriously: The situation construal model and the Riverside Situational Q-sort. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 25(3), 203-208.

Funder, D.C. (2012). Accurate personality judgment. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 21, 177-182.

Sherman, R.A., Nave, C.S., & Funder, D.C. (2010). Situational similarity and personality predict behavioral consistency. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99, 330-343.

Sherman, R.A., & Funder, D.C. (2009). Evaluating correlations in studies of personality and behavior: Beyond the number of significant findings to be expected by chance. Journal of Research in Personality, 43, 1053-1063.

Krueger, J.I., & Funder, D.C. (2004). Towards a balanced social psychology: Causes, consequences and cures for the problem-seeking approach to social behavior and cognition (target article), Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 27, 313-327.

Funder, D.C. (2001). Personality. Annual Review of Psychology, 52, 197-221.

Funder, D.C. (1999). Personality judgment: A realistic approach to person perception. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Funder, D.C. (1995). On the accuracy of personality judgment: A realistic approach. Psychological Review, 102, 652-670.

Funder, D.C. (1991). Global traits: A Neo-Allportian approach to personality. Psychological Science, 2, 31-39.

Kenrick, D.T., & Funder, D.C. (1988). Profiting from controversy: Lessons from the person-situation debate. American Psychologist, 43, 23-34.

Funder, D.C. (1987). Errors and mistakes: Evaluating the accuracy of social judgment. Psychological Bulletin, 101, 75-90.