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headshot of Richard Mattson

Richard Mattson

Professor, Director of Undergraduate Program



My lab researches processes, perceptions, and attitudes relevant to communication in intimate dyads across a wide range of important domains; including social support, conflict, intimate partner violence, sexual consent, intimate touch, and sexual and relationship satisfaction. Recent work has focused on: (a) biological factors associated with social support communication, relationship functioning, and relationship quality; and (b) situational and characterological factors relevant to perceptions of partner violence and perceived sexual consent as it relates to sexual violence. I am also interested in the intersection of these phenomena with gender roles, sexual orientation, and substance use. My lab uses a range of experimental, correlational, and descriptive approaches to produce basic scientific insights with translation applications to intervention, policy and public discourse. Currently, I am extending my interest in the intersection of physiological and communication processes in close dyads to the study of psychotherapy interactions.


  • PhD, MA, Binghamton University
  • BA, State University of New York at Geneseo

Research Interests

  • Communication processes in intimate dyads
  • Sexual consent and assault
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Gender and gender norms

Teaching Interests

  • Behavior disorders
  • Data management and analysis
  • Psychotherapy techniques
  • Clinical supervision

More Info

Representative Publications

Mattson, R. E., Parker, M. M., McKinnon, A. M., Massey, S. G., Merriwether, A. M., Hardesty, M., & Young, S. R. (2022). Just say yes? A cluster analytic approach to evaluating college students’ understandings of affirmative consent. Archives of sexual behavior, 51(6), 3197-3209.

Bibby, E. S., McKinnon, A. M., Shaw, M., & Mattson, R. E. (2022). Accurately detecting happy facial expressions associates with perceptions of flirtatiousness. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 02654075221128259.

Ashkinazi, M., Wagner, S. A., Cunningham, K., & Mattson, R. E. (2022). Body image satisfaction and body-related partner commentary link to marital quality through sexual frequency and satisfaction: A path model. Couple and Family Psychology: Research and Practice.

Hardesty, M., Young, S., McKinnon, A. M., Merriwether, A. M., Mattson, R. E., Massey, S. G. (2021). Indiscrete: How typical college student sexual behavior troubles affirmative consent’s demand for clear communication. Sexuality Research and Social Policy.

Wagner, S. A., Mattson, R. E., Davila, J., Johnson, M. D., & Cameron, N. M. (2020). Touch me just enough: The intersection of adult attachment, intimate touch, and marital satisfaction. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 37(6), 1945-1967.

Parker, M. M., Mattson, R. E., Alexander, E. F., & McKinnon, A. M. (2020). Does perceived injury explain the effects of gender on attributions of blame for intimate partner violence? A factorial vignette analysis. Journal of family violence, 1-11.

Mattson, R. E., Cameron, N., Middleton, F. A., Starr, L. R., Davila, J., & Johnson, M. D. (2019). Oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) links to marital quality via social support behavior and perceived partner responsiveness. Journal of Family Psychology, 33(1), 44.

Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae