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Syracuse University, College of Arts and Sciences

Sara E. Burke

Burke profile

Assistant Professor


519 Huntington Hall


Ph.D., Yale University, Social Psychology
B.A., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Research and Teaching Interests

My research focuses on intergroup bias -- stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination, and experiences of stigma. Specifically, I research variations in the way bias operates when it targets different groups, highlighting cases where addressing underexamined target groups reveals novel insights about bias that would otherwise have escaped notice. For example, some of my work addresses groups that are perceived as falling in between other groups, such as biracial people and bisexual people.

One of the guiding themes of my teaching is that making inferences about human social behavior requires a careful assessment of complex and often conflicting sources of evidence. I try to incorporate information about research methods and the ambiguities of scientific inference into all of my courses.

Visit my website,, for more information about my research and for some of my statistics teaching materials.

Representative Publications

Burke, S. E., & LaFrance, M. (in press). Perceptions of instability and choice across sexual orientation groups.Group Processes & Intergroup Relations.

Burke, S. E., & LaFrance, M. (2016). Lay conceptions of sexual minority groups. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 45(3), 635-650.

Burke, S. E., & LaFrance, M. (2016). Stereotypes of bisexual people: What do bisexual people themselves think? Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 3(2), 247-254.

Burke, S. E., Dovidio, J. F., Przedworski, J. M., Hardeman, R. R., Perry, S. P., Phelan, S. M., Nelson, D. B., Burgess, D. J., Yeazel, M. W., & van Ryn, M. (2015). Do contact and empathy mitigate bias against gay and lesbian people among heterosexual first-year medical students? A report from the Medical Student CHANGE Study. Academic Medicine, 90(5), 645-651.

Burke, S. E., Wang, K., & Dovidio, J. F. (2014). Witnessing disclosure of depression: Gender and attachment avoidance moderate interpersonal evaluations. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 33(6), 536-559.