Dr Sue Watt

Senior Lecturer - Faculty of Medicine and Health; School of Psychology

Sue Watt

Phone: +61 2 6773 2153

Email: sue.watt@une.edu.au


B.Sc. (Honours) University of Western Australia; B.A. (Honours) University of Western Australia; Ph.D. University of Western Australia

Teaching Areas

PSYC 200 Social Psychology

Supervision Areas



Interactions on the Internet

Environmental attitudes and beliefs

Current Postgraduate Research in Social Psychology

PhD Students Projects
Yvette Alcott Australians, acculturation, and prejudice
Belinda Flannery What is Aussie pride? Identifying social-psychological antecedents to displays of national symbols: Implications for intergroup aggression.
Mike FranklinElder abuse: The hidden mistreatment of older people living in the community.

Research Interests

Dr Watt is a social psychologist who conducts research into several different topics in prejudice, immigration and refugees, interactions on the Internet, and environmental psychology.

She has studied prejudice towards several groups in Australia and overseas, focusing on the psychological underpinnings of these attitudes. In particular, she has focused on the function and structure of prejudiced attitudes.  In a related area, Dr Watt has conducted research on the topic of immigration. She is interested in the processes involved in adjusting to a new society, and has examined acculturation from the points of view of the immigrant and the receiving society.

Dr Watt’s most recent research investigates the flip side of prejudice – the liking and welcoming of other groups.  Dr Watt is looking at Australians’ positive attitudes to immigrants, including refugees, and how this might translate into a warm welcome. To complete the loop, her current research examines how this affects immigrants’ acculturation.

Inaugural UNE Social Psychology Symposium, 2014

Postgraduate and honours students at the Inaugural UNE Social Psychology Symposium, 2014

Social Psychology at UNE (SP-UNE) applies the knowledge and methods of social psychology to real-world problems. For more information about our activities, please visit https://blog.une.edu.au/SocialPsychology.


Hanley, S., Watt, S., Coventry, W. (2019). Taking a break: The effect of taking a vacation from Facebook and Instagram on subjective well-being. PLOS ONE, June 6, 2019, 1-13doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0217743

Watt, S.  (2018). Labeling. In V. Zeigler-Hill & T.K. Shackelford (Eds). Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences.  Springer International Publishing. Doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_697-1

Watt, S.  (2018). Individuation. In V. Zeigler-Hill & T.K. Shackelford (Eds). Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences. Springer International Publishing. Doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_685-1

Flannery, B. J. & Watt, S. E. (2018). Pauline Hanson One Nation (PHON) and Right-Wing Protective Popular Nationalism: Monocultural tendencies at the expense of social cohesion. In G. Bligh, T. Moore, T. Lynch (Eds.) Pauline Hanson, One Nation and Australian Politics. Springer Nature, Singapore. Doi: 10.1007/978-981-13-2670-7_4

Franklin, M., Watt, S. E., Phillips, W. J., Wark, S. (2017) Addressing elder abuse in general practice. Digging for gold: Building success in ageing research. Proceedings of the 16th National Conference of Emerging Researchers in Ageing.

Alcott, Y. D.  & Watt, S. E.  (2017).  Acculturation strategy and racial group in the perception of immigrants.  Journal of Pacific Rim Psychology, 11. doi:10.1017/prp.2017.2

Anderson, D. L., Watt, S. E., & Shanley, D. C. (2017). Ambivalent attitudes about teaching children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, 1-18. doi: 10.1080/13632752.2017.1298242

Hine, D. W., Phillips, W. J., Cooksey, R., Reser, J. P., Nunn, P., Marks, A. D. G., . . . Watt, S. E. (2016). "Preaching to different choirs: How to motivate dismissive, uncommitted, and alarmed audiences to adapt to climate change?" Global Environmental Change, 36: 1-11.

Greenhalgh, E., & Watt, S.E. (2015). Preferences for consistency and value dissimilarities in dehumanization and prejudice toward asylum seekers in Australia. European Journal of Social Psychology, 45(1), 110-119. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.2066

Greenhalgh, E., Watt, S.E., & Schutte, N.  (2015).  Mechanisms of moral disengagement in the endorsement of asylum seeker policies in Australia.  Ethics and Behavior.  26 (6), 482-499. DOI:  10.10880/10508422.2014.951720

Anderson, D. L., Watt, S. E., & Shanley, D. C. (2014). A multi-dimensional model of the origins of attitude certainty: teachers' attitudes toward attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Social Psychology of Education, 17(1) 19-50.

Hine, D. W., Reser, J. P., Phillips, W. J., Cooksey, R., Marks, A. D., Nunn, P., Watt, S. E., Bradley, G., & Glendon, A. I. (2013). Identifying climate change interpretive communities in a large Australian sample. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 36, 229-239.

Anderson, D., Watt, S.E., Noble, W., & Shanley, D. (2012). Knowledge of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and attitudes toward teaching children with ADHD: The role of teaching experience. Psychology in the Schools, 49, 511-525.

Rubin, M., Watt, S. E., & Ramelli, M. (2012). Immigrants' social integration as a function of approach-avoidance orientation and problem-solving style. International Journal of Intercultural Relations , 36, 498-505.

Watt, S. E., Ramelli, M., & Rubin, M.  (2010).  The interplay of social context and personal attributes in immigrants' adaptation and satisfaction with the move to Australia.  In Hayes, Anna and Mason, Robert, eds. (2010) Migrant security 2010: refereed proceedings of the national symposium titled Migrant Security 2010: Citizenship and Social Inclusion in a Transnational Era. University of Southern Queensland, Faculty of Arts, Public Memory Research Centre, Toowoomba, Australia.

Watt, S. E., & Larkin, C.  (2010).   Prejudiced people perceive more community support for their views:  The role of own, media and peer attitudes in perceived consensus.  Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 40(3), 710–731.

Watt, S. E., & Badger, A.  (2009). Effects of social belonging on homesickness:  An exploration of the belongingness hypothesis. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35(4), 516-530.

Pedersen, A., Griffiths, B., & Watt, S. E. (2008). Attitudes towards outgroups and the perception of consensus:  All feet do not wear one shoe. Journal of Community and Applied Psychology, 18(6), 543-557.

Maio, G. R, Haddock, G., Watt, S. E., & Hewstone, M. (2008). Implicit measures in applied contexts: An illustrative example of antiracism advertising. In R. Petty, R. Fazio & P. Brinol (Eds.) Attitudes: Insights from the Implicit Measures (pp. 327-357). Psychology Press: New York.

Watt, S. E., Maio, G. R., Haddock, G. & Johnson, B. T. (2008).  Attitude functions in persuasion:  Matching, involvement, self-affirmation, and hierarchy.  In Attitudes and attitude change (pp. 189-211). Prislin, R. & W. Crano (Eds.).  Frontiers of Social Psychology Series.  Psychology Press.

Lea, M., Spears, R., & Watt, S. E. (2007). Visibility and anonymity effects on attraction and group cohesiveness. European Journal of Social Psychology, 37, 761-773.

Watt, S. E., Maio, G. R., Rees, K., & Hewstone, M. (2007). Functions of Attitudes Towards Ethnic Groups:  Effects of Level of Abstraction. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 43, 441-449.

Pedersen, A., Watt, S., & Griffiths, B. (2007).  Prejudice against asylum seekers and the fear of terrorism:  The importance of context. In V.Colic-Peisker & F.Tilbury (Eds)., Settling in Australia: The social inclusion of refugees (pp.38-55). Centre for Social and Community Research, Murdoch University, Perth.

Pedersen, A., Dudgeon, P., Watt, S. E., & Griffiths, B. (2006). Attitudes toward indigenous Australians: The issue of "special treatment".  Australian Psychologist, 41(2), 85-94.

Pedersen, A., Watt, S., Hansen, S.  (2006).  The role of false beliefs in the community's and the federal government's attitudes toward Australian asylum seekers.  Australian Journal of Social Issues, 41(1), 105-124.

Watt, S.E., Lea, M., Spears, R., & Rogers, P. (2002). How social is internet communication? Anonymity effects in computer-mediated groups. In S. Woolgar (Ed.) Virtual Society? Technology, cyberbole, reality (pp. 61-77). Oxford University Press:  Oxford.

Watt, S.E. & Maio, G.  (2001).  Why people donate to charity:  A social psychological perspective. Report to the National Council for Voluntary Organisations: London.

Spears, R., Postmes, T., Lea, M. & Watt, S.E.  (2001).  A SIDE view of social influence.  In J.P. Forgas & K.D. Williams (Eds.).  Social influence: Direct and indirect processes. Philadelphia:  Psychology Press.

Lea, M., Spears, R., Watt, S. & Rogers, P. (2000). The inSIDE story: Anonymity effects on social identity processes within on-line groups. In T. Postmes, R. Spears, M. Lea, & S.D. Reicher (eds.) SIDE-issues centre-stage: Recent developments in studies of de-individuation in groups. Amsterdam: North Holland.