Observation of Social Exchanges in Real and Virtual Environments


The OBSERVE Lab seeks to understand how people’s daily social interactions are related to their health and well-being. We focus on observational assessment as they naturally unfold in the “real world” and in online social networks. The naturalistic observation method we primarily use is the EAR, which periodically records snippets of sound in people’s momentary environments. It allows us to study how participants’ observed daily behaviors relate to relationship and coping outcomes, without relying on self-reports. Our goal is to understand the implications of mundane interactions and automatic behaviors (e.g. word use) to ultimately identify effective strategies and interventions people can naturally incorporate into their daily lives.