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Christopher T Leone

Professor Emeritus

Psychology | College of Arts & Sciences

Areas of Expertise

Self-monitoring and close relationships; effects of mere thought on attitude polarization; stereotyping and perceptions of child abuse; personality and religiosity/spirituality. 

His teaching and research interests are focused on personality differences (self-monitoring) as it relates to the initiation, maintenance, and dissolution of close relationships, moderators and mediators of the effects of mere thought on attitude change, stereotypes about perpetrators and victims of child abuse, and individual differences (self-monitoring) in religiosity/spirituality.

He has also published chapters in scholarly books concerning the psychological foundations of moral education and character development. Additionally, Dr. Leone has also given several invited representations and workshops on the process of mentoring undergraduate students as they make the transition from students to scholars.


Postdoctoral: Institute of Child Development
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Concentration: Social and Personality Development

Graduate: University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602
Specialization: Social Psychology
Co-major: Psychopathology
M.S. 1976, Ph.D. 1979, with distinction.

Undergraduate: University of Connecticut
Storrs, CT 06269
Major: Psychology, Minor: Sociology
B.A. 1972, with honors.


Dr. Christopher Leone is a Professor of Psychology and the Director of the MSPS Program at the University of North Florida. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut and his masters as well as doctoral degree from the University of Georgia. As the result of a National institute of Mental health Fellowship, he spent two years at the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota where he studied personality development. Dr. Leone has served as a Consulting Editor and/or Associate Editor on the editorial boards of several journals including Child Development and Journal of Personality as well as an ad-hoc reviewer/proposal consultant for many other journals, the American Psychological Association, and National Sconce Foundation. At UNF, Dr. Leone has mentored over forty master’s theses, over fifty honors theses, and dozens of graduate as well as undergraduate research projects.


Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching and Mentoring Award,          Society for Personality and Social Psychology (Division 8 of        the American Psychological Association), 2019.
Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, UNF, 2009, 2014.
Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award, UNF, 2018.
Outstanding Mentor Award, UNF, 2009, 2014.
Outstanding Mentor Award, Southeastern Psychological                   Association, 2006.
Outstanding Faculty Service Award, UNF, 2006.
Outstanding Scholarship Award, UNF, 1999.



Society for Personality and Social Psychology
Southeastern Psychological Association
Society of Southeastern Social Psychology
International Society for Self and Identity


Grants and Contracts Awarded

University of North Florida Reserach Grant, 1988
University of North Florida Summer Reserach Grant, 2008, 2009
University of North Florida TLO Grant recipient, 2011, 2012
UNF Faculty Development Grants: Proposal Development
     Grant, UNF 2014.
University of North Florida Undergraduate Research Grants,
     2001 through 2017
University of North Florida Graduate Research Grants, 2017,

Publications & Presentations

Representative Publications

Leone, C., & Hawkins, L.B. in press). Marriage versus 
 cohabitation: Self-monitoring and self-selection to intimate   relationships. Journal of Psychology and Behavioral Science.
Fuglestad, P.T., Leone, C., & Drury, T. (2019). Protective and   acquisitive self-monitoring differences in attachment anxiety   and avoidance. Self and Identity.   doi:10.1080/15298868.2019.1570969
Leone, C., Hawkins, L., & Bright, M. (2018). Minimizing   mistreatment by female adults: The influence of gender-based   social categories and personality differences on attitudes   about child abuse. Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and   Applied. doi:10.1080/00223980.2018.1541439
Leone, C., Gainey, L., & Moulder, R. (2016). Angel or demon?   Self-monitoring differences in the mental representations of   current versus former romantic partners. Self and Identity,   15(4), 432-451. 
Clarkson, J.J., Chambers, J.R., Hirt, E.R., Otto, A.S., Kardes, F.R., & Leone, C. (2015). The self-control consequences of   political ideology. Proceedings of the National Academy of   Sciences, 112(27), 8250-8253.
Clarkson, J.J., Valente, M., Leone, C., & Tormala, Z.L. (2013).   Motivated reflection on attitude-inconsistent information: An   exploration of the role of fear of invalidity in self-persuasion.   Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29, 1559-1570.
Hawkins, L. B., Leone, C., & Jarvis-Mejia, S. (Winter, 2011).
 The protégé-mentor relationship as a recruiting tool. Council
 on Undergraduate Research Quarterly, 32(2), 47.

Clarkson J., Tormala, Z., & Leone, C. (2011). A self-validation perspective on the mere thought effect. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47, 449-454.

Hardy, L., & Leone, C. (2008). Real evidence for the failure of the Jamesian perspective or more evidence in support of it? Journal of Personality, 76, 1123-1136.
Leone, C., & Hawkins, L. B. (2006). Self-monitoring and close relationships. Journal of Personality, 74(3), 739-778.

Leone, C. (2006). Self-monitoring: Individual differences in   orientations to the social world. Journal of Personality: Special   Section on Self-Monitoring, 74, 633-657.
Leone, C., & Hall, I. (2003) Self-monitoring, marital   dissatisfaction, and relationship dissolution: Individual   differences in orientations to marriage and divorce. Self and   Identity, 2, 189- 2003.

Representative Presentations

Leone, C. & Kalafatis, A. The Walk-In Closet: Self-monitoring differences in strategic self-disclosure of sexual orientation for gays and lesbians. Presentation at the annual meeting of the Society of Personality and Social Psychology, Atlanta, GA., 2018.

Leone, C., & Hawkins, L. Need for closure and stereotyping: Who holds men more accountable than women for child sexual abuse? Invited symposium presentation at the annual meeting of the Society of Southeastern Social Psychologists, Jacksonville, FL., 2017.

Leone, C., Ochrietor, J., & Hawkins, L.B. Building bridges or building walls: An interactive workshop on interdisciplinary research with undergraduates. Invited presentation at the 8th annual Florida Statewide Symposium: Engagement in Undergraduate Research, Orlando, FL., 2015.

Leone, C. Mere thought and attitude polarization: Belief consistency, cognitive schemas, and moderator variables. Invited symposium presentation at the annual meeting of the Society of Southeastern Social Psychologists, Athens, GA., 2014.

Leone, C. "It depends” - Understanding the dynamic interplay of dispositional and situational determinants of behavior. Invited symposium at the annual meeting of the
Society of Southeastern Social Psychologists, Augusta, GA., 2013.

Hawkins, L.B., & Leone, C. Mentor-protégé relationships: How to avoid disaster. Invited presentation at the third annual Florida Undergraduate Research Conference, Gainesville, FL., 2013.

Leone, C., & Hawkins, L.B. Avoiding the perils and pitfalls of plagiarism: Creating authentic scholarship. Invited presentation at the third annual Florida Undergraduate Research Conference, Gainesville, FL., 2013.

Hofmann, N., Leone, C., & Hawkins, L.B. Using conferences to enhance your chances of being recruited to graduate programs: A different approach to conference attendance. Invited presentation at the third annual Florida Undergraduate Research Conference, Gainesville, FL., 2013.

Valente, M., Clarkson, J.J., Leone, C., Tormala, Z.L. When consider-the-opposite backfires: Undermining attitude-inconsistent thoughts as a new means of polarization. Paper presentation at the annual conference of the Midwestern Psychological Association, Chicago, Illinois, 2012.

Leone, C. The mentor-protégé relationship: What works and what doesn’t. Chair of and discussant for invited focus group presentation at the annual meeting of the Southeastern
Psychological Association, Jacksonville, FL., 2011.

Leone, C. Social psychology and mentoring: Cultivating today’s students and tomorrow’s scholars. Invited symposium presentation at the annual meeting of the Society of
Southeastern Social Psychologists, Greenville, SC. 2008.

Leone, C., Hawkins, L. B., & Clarkson, J. Fifty years of research on attitudes and persuasion. Invited presentation at the SSSP Symposium of the annual conference of the Southeastern Psychological Association, Atlanta, GA., 2004. 


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