Arlen C. Moller , PhDAssociate Professor
Office: Life Sciences Building, Room 256D
Arlen Moller received his Ph.D. in Social and Personality Psychology from the University of Rochester (2007) in Rochester, NY. Following the completion of his graduate training, he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, PA from 2007 through 2009. Dr. Moller was a full time faculty member in the Department of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University from 2009 through 2012; and continues to maintain a secondary / adjunct faculty appointment there. In August 2012, Dr. Moller joined the Illinois Institute of Technology as an Associate Professor in the College of Psychology.
Curriculum Vitaehref="" target="_blank">
Research & Major Accomplishments
My research program concerns understanding principles of human motivation and applying those principles toward helping people make healthy choices. In particular, my research is currently focused on developing more effective interventions for increasing physical activity, eating healthier, and for weight management in general. One common feature of my research involves differentiating autonomous and controlled forms of motivation based on a self-determination theory framework. And I am especially interested in interventions that support a subset of autonomous motivation known as intrinsic motivation, a subcategory characterized by interest and enjoyment. My research program is currently exploring ways to leverage technology (e.g., smartphone apps & accelerometry), game design, social networks, choice, and financial incentives in ways that support autonomous motivation and lasting behavior change. An underlying principle is that, if we can help people to value or even enjoy healthy behaviors, healthy changes will tend to come more easily and be more easily maintained. Another complimentary feature of this research program involves my orientation toward collaboration and crossdisciplinary team science. Compelling empirical evidence suggests that, when done well, team science is more creative, more impactful, and more fun; and I’ve found support for these principles in my experience, as well. You can find more information and training tools for crossdisciplinary researchers at TeamScience.net, a website co-developed with Drs. Spring, Falk-Krzesinski, and the team at NogginLabs, Inc.
- 2004: Fellow European Association of Experimental Social Psychology Summer School (1 of 4 funded), Workgroup on Emotion, Motivation, and Decision-Making, Groningen, Netherlands
- 2005-2006: Templeton Fellow in Positive Psychology, Medici II Conference, U. of Pennsylvania
- 2006: SPSP Travel Grant, Judgment and Decision-Making Pre-Conference, Palm Springs
- 2006: Alfred Baldwin Award for Excellence in Research, University of Rochester
- 2006: Student Publication Award for the Outstanding Paper Published by a Student in a Journal of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (1 of 35 eligible papers that year)
- 2007: Visiting Scholar Grant, Medici III Conference, University of Pennsylvania
- 2009: Fellow NCI Summer Institute on Social/Personality Psychology & Health
- 2010: Fellow NIH Summer Institute on the Design and Conduct of Randomized Clinical Trials Involving Behavioral Interventions
- 2011-2013: Recipient of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Loan Repayment Program (LRP) funded by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Elliot, A. J., & Moller, A. C. (2003). Performance-approach goals: Good or bad forms of regulation? International Journal of Educational Research, 39, 339-356.
Moller, A. C., Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2006). Self-determination theory and public policy: Improving the quality of consumer decisions without using coercion. Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, 25, 104-116.
Deci, E. L., La Guardia, J. G., Moller, A. C., Scheiner, M. J., & Ryan, R. M. (2006). On the benefits of giving as well as receiving autonomy support: Mutuality in close friendships. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 32, 313-327.
Cury, F., Elliot, A. J., Da Fonseca, D., & Moller, A. C. (2006). The social-cognitive model of achievement motivation and the 2 x 2 achievement goal framework. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 90, 666-679.
Moller, A. C., Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2006). Choice & ego-depletion: A self-determination theory perspective. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 32, 1024-1036.
Elliot, A. E., Maier, M., Moller, A. C., Friedman, R., & Meinhardt, J. (2007). Color and psychological functioning: The effect of red on performance attainment. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 136, 154-168.
Moller, A. C., Forbes-Jones, E., Hightower, A. D, & Friedman, R. (2008). The influence of preschool classroom sex composition: Boys fare worse in preschool classrooms with more boys. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 23, 409-418.
Moller, A. C., Forbes-Jones, E., Hightower, A. D. (2008). Classroom age-composition and developmental change in 70 urban classrooms. Journal of Educational Psychology, 100, 741-753.
Moller, A. C., Elliot, A. J., Friedman, R. (2008). When competence and love are at stake: Achievement goals and perceived closeness to parents in an achievement context, Journal of Research in Personality, 42, 1386-1391.
Moller, A. C., Elliot, A. J., & Maier, M. (2009). Basic hue-meaning associations. Emotion, 9, 898-902.
Deci, E. L., Friedman, R., Elliot, A. J., Moller, A. C. , & Aarts, H. (2010). Motivational synchronicity: Priming motivational states via exposure to others. Motivation and Emotion, 34, 34-38.
Moller, A. C., & Deci, E. L. (2010). Interpersonal control, dehumanization, and violence: A self-determination theory perspective. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 13, 41-53.
Moller, A. C., Deci, E. L., & Elliot, A. J. (2010). Person-level relatedness and the incremental value of relating. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 36, 754-767.
Knudson, B., Moller, A. C., Spring, B. (2010). How to catalyze learning in the online environment. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 39(S1), 1001
Moller, A. C., McFadden, H.G., DeMott, A., Roehrig, M, Spring, B. (2010). Patient preferences in health behavior change. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 39(S1), 2061.
Spring, B., Schneider, K., McFadden, H.G., Vaughn, J., Kozak, A. T., Smith, M., Moller, A. C., Epstein, L., Russell, S., DeMott, A., & Hedeker, D. (2010). Make Better Choices (MBC) Study Design: An RCT Testing Optimal Technology-Supported Change in Multiple Diet and Physical Activity Risk Behaviors. BMC Public Health, 10, 586.
Meier, B. P., Moller, A. C., Chen, J., & Riemer-Peltz, M. H. (2011). Embodied real estate: North-South location biases housing preference and pricing. Social Psychological and Personality Science,2(5), 547-553.
Diehl, J. J., Wolf, J., Herlihy, L., & Moller, A. C. (2011). Seeing red: Are colors a window into implicit societal conceptions of the autism spectrum?Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 31(3).
Spring, B., Moller, A. C., Coons, M. (2012). Multiple health behaviours: Overview and implications. Journal of Public Health, 34(S1), i3-i10.
Liu, K., Daviglus, M., Loria, C., Colangelo, L., Spring, B., Moller, A. C., & Lloyd-Jones, D. (2012). Healthy lifestyle through young adulthood and presence of low cardiovascular disease risk profile in middle age. Circulation, 125, 996-1003.
Moller, A.C., McFadden, H. G., Hedeker, D., Spring, B. (2012). Financial motivation undermines maintenance in an intensive diet and activity intervention. Journal of Obesity, 2012, 1-8, doi:10.1155/2012/740519.
Spring, B., Schneider, K., McFadden, H. G., Vaughn, J., Kozak, A. T., Smith, M., Moller, A. C., Epstein, L. H., DeMott, A., Hedeker, D., Siddique, J., Lloyd-Jones, D. M. (2012). Multiple behavior changes in diet and activity: A randomized controlled trial using mobile technology, Archives of Internal Medicine, 172(10), 789-796.
Moller, A. C., McFadden, H. G., Hedeker, D., & Spring, B. (2012). Fitness motivation vs. financial motivation: Adaptive and maladaptive changes in preference for healthy and unhealthy behaviors during a multiple behavior change intervention. Annuals of Behavioral Medicine, 43(s1), s150.
Chapters & Invited Entries
Deci, E. L., & Moller, A. C. (2005). The concept of competence: A starting place for understanding intrinsic motivation and self-determined extrinsic motivation (pp. 579-597). In A. Elliot & C. Dweck (Eds.) Handbook of Competence Motivation, New York: Plenum Press.
Moller, A. C., Friedman, R., & Deci, E. L. (2006). A self-determination theory perspectives on the interpersonal and intrapersonal aspects of self-esteem. In M. H. Kernis (Ed.), Self-Esteem Issues and Answers: A Sourcebook of Current Perspectives, Philadelphia: Psychology Press.
Moller, A. C., & Elliot, A. J. (2006). The 2 x 2 achievement goal framework: An overview of empirical research (pp. 307-326). In A. V. Mitel (Ed.), Focus on Educational Psychology Research, New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.
Moller, A. C., Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2007). Self-determination theory (p. 806-810). In R. F. Baumeister & K. D. Vohs (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Social Psychology, Vol. 2, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Moller, A. C., & Deci, E. L. (2007). Control (p. 182-185). In R. F. Baumeister & K. D. Vohs (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Social Psychology, Vol. 1, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Moller, A. C. (2009). [Review of the book Handbook of Research Methods in Personality Psychology]. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 28 (6), 796-798.
Friedman, R., Moller, A. C., Fryer, J. W., Zahn, I., Law, W., Acuff, R. D., Niesta, D., Murayama, K., Meier, A. M., Jelstad, B., & Elliot, A. J. (2009). Achievement goals in the context of the hierarchical model of approach-avoidance achievement motivation. In S. Karabenick & A. Kaplan (Eds.), Culture, Self, and Motivation: Essays in Honor of Martin L. Maehr. NY: Information Age Publishers.
Moller, A. C., & Elliot, A. E. (2009). Competence (p. 121-122). In D. Matsumoto (Ed.), In Cambridge Dictionary of Psychology, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Moller, A. C., Meier, B. P., & Wall, R. W. (2010). Developing an experimental induction of flow: Effortless action in the lab (p. 191-204). In B. J. Bruya (Ed.), Effortless Attention: A New Perspective in the Cognitive Science of Attention and Action, Boston, MA: MIT Press.
Moller, A. C., & Deci, E. L. (in press). Intrinsic Motivation. In A. C. Michalos (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Quality of Life Research, Boston MA: Springer Press.
Spring, B., Pictor, A., DeMott, A., Ferguson, M., & Moller, A. C. (in press). Research to practice translation. In M. D. Gellman (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine, Boston MA: Springer Press.
Hesse, B.W. (2011). COALESCE (CTSA Online Assistance for Leveraging the Science of Collaborative Effort). JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association 306, 1925-1926. This is a review of the TeamScience.net online training tool developed by Spring, B., Moller, A. C., and Falk-Krzesinski, H. J.