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Patty Van Cappellen

Assistant Research Professor in the Social Science Research Institute
Social Science Research Institute


I am a social psychologist interested in the affective and motivational determinants and consequences of religious/spiritual practices and beliefs. I am also active in the domains of happiness/positive psychology, meditation, health behavior maintenance, and intergroup relations. See my Belief, Affect, and Behavior Lab webpage for more information (
I am also the Director of the Interdisciplinary Behavioral Research Center (IBRC). The IBRC is an experimental research lab that manages and administers a variety of resources to Duke researchers engaged in social and behavioral science. The IBRC offers free research space (5,000 square feet of group and individual testing rooms equipped with computers), ample free parking, access to a large community participant pool, staff support, and research grants. See for more information.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Assistant Research Professor in the Social Science Research Institute · 2021 - Present Social Science Research Institute, University Institutes and Centers
Assistant Research Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience · 2021 - Present Psychology & Neuroscience, Trinity College of Arts & Sciences

Education, Training & Certifications

Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium) · 2012 Ph.D.

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