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Andrew Todd


  • Ph.D., Social Psychology, Northwestern University, 2009
  • M.S., Social Psychology, Northwestern University, 2006
  • B.A., Psychology, Michigan State University, 2003


Andrew Todd joined the Department of Psychology in 2017. Before coming to UC Davis, he was a faculty member in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Iowa and a postdoctoral researcher at Social Cognition Center Cologne (Germany). Much of his research focuses on how people make sense of what others are thinking and feeling, and the implications of such mental state reasoning for negotiating socially diverse environments. He currently serves as an associate editor at the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology

Research Focus

Professor Todd’s research spans several topics: (1) perspective taking, empathy, and mental state reasoning; (2) cognitive processes underlying social categorization, evaluation, inference, and judgment; and (3) stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination based on race and other social categories (e.g., age, gender).

In a primary line of research, he explores how perceiver-based factors (e.g., incidental emotions), target-based factors (e.g., group membership), and contextual factors (e.g., time pressure) influence the ability to intuit what other people see, know, want, and believe. He also examines how actively considering other people's mental states (e.g., their thoughts, feelings, and other subjective experiences) affects the subtle biases that pervade intergroup encounters and social judgment more generally. In other work, he studies how spontaneously activated mental processes interact with more deliberately enacted processes to guide people's impressions of others. He’s particularly interested in how a greater understanding of these processes can inform social issues (e.g., intergroup relations, diversity management).

Selected Publications

Wang, Y. A., Simpson, A. J., & Todd, A. R. (in press). Egocentric anchoring-and-adjustment underlies social inferences about known others varying in similarity and familiarity. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General

Hutchings, R. J., Simpson, A. J., Sherman, J. W., & Todd, A. R. (2021). Perspective taking reduces intergroup bias in visual representations of faces. Cognition, 214, 104808. 

Klein, S. A. W., Hutchings, R. J., & Todd, A. R. (2021). Revising mental representations of faces based on new diagnostic information. Cognition, 217​, 104916.

Todd, A. R., Johnson, D. J., Lassetter, B., Neel, R., Simpson, A. J., & Cesario, J. (2021). Category salience and racial bias in weapon identification: A diffusion modeling approach. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 120, 672-693.

Wang, Y. A., & Todd, A. R. (2021). Evaluations of empathizers depend on the target of empathy. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 121, 1005-1028.


Professor Todd currently teaches courses on social cognition and attitudes. He’s previously taught courses on research methods and the unconscious mind. 


Professor Todd has been the recipient of several awards, including a SAGE Young Scholar Award from the Foundation for Personality and Social Psychology and a Dissertation Award (2nd prize) from the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. He's an elected fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, the Society of Experimental Social Psychology, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, and his research has been supported by funding from the National Science Foundation and the UK Economic & Social Research Council.