Kayla Pierce

Kayla Pierce

Areas of Study

Social Psychology, Group Processes, Emotions, Organizations


Kayla is a third-year graduate student and University Presidential Fellow in the Department of Sociology, and she is also a doctoral affiliate with the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. Kayla is affiliated with the Social Responsibilities for Research Program, which is a National Science Foundation funded initiative at Notre Dame dedicated to training scholars to apply their work outside of academia. Before coming to Notre Dame, Kayla received her M.A. in Sociology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (2015) and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in Sociology from Auburn University (2013). For Kayla’s M.A. thesis, she conducted experimental research investigating the way in which response latency functions as a status cue to create hierarchies in task groups.Kayla is most interested in group processes, emotions and theory development. She is interested in testing theories inside and outside the lab and using social psychological theory to explain and predict behavior in families and organizations. Her dissertation work investigates leadership in organizations and how the legacy of a leader persists after the leader exists. Kayla is also conducting research with professor Jessica Collett on clickbait and the reduction of emotional discomfort.



2015 Graduate Student Research Award, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Pierce CV