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Robert Rosenthal Honored by UC Regents


Robert Rosenthal Honored by UC Regents

Board names the UCR distinguished professor of psychology a University Professor.

(January 18, 2008)

Robert RosenthalEnlarge

Robert Rosenthal

Robert Rosenthal, distinguished professor of psychology at UC Riverside, was named a University Professor by the University of California Regents this week.

The title of University Professor is reserved for scholars of international distinction who are also recognized as scholars and teachers of exceptional ability. The appointment allows these distinguished scholars to visit other UC campuses to give special seminars and presentations and to meet with students and faculty.

Rosenthal is one of two professors currently on the UCR campus to receive the honor. The other is Emory Elliott, professor of English and director of the Center for Ideas and Society. Arturo Gomez-Pompa, distinguished professor of botany emeritus, was named a University Professor in 1999.

Rosenthal, who spent 37 years as a professor at Harvard University before joining the UCR faculty in 1999, is internationally known for his foundational work in statistical analysis of social science literature, the influence of expectations, and nonverbal behavior. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

His groundbreaking research into experimenter bias and self-fulfilling prophecy — known as the Rosenthal Effect — led to the development of double-blind studies in the social and biomedical sciences and ultimately challenged two generations of researchers to focus on how body language and tone of voice can influence the results of jury trials, student performance and patient outcomes.

The Academic Senate Ad Hoc Committee that unanimously recommended the honor said Rosenthal is “near legendary as a scholar and a teacher in the field of social psychology. He has made substantive and methodological contributions that have shaped his field. He is noted for generosity and skill as a teacher.”

Rosenthal has won numerous awards for his research, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Donald Campbell Award of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, the AAAS Prize for Behavioral Science Research, and a James McKeen Catell sabbatical award. Cambridge University Press published a Festschrift volume — a book of essays by colleagues celebrating a respected scholar — in his honor.

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