Helen Lee Lin, Ph.D.

Social / Behavioral Scientist

Educational Background

Under the supervision of Dr. C. Raymond Knee, Helen Lee Lin received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Houston in 2010 after completing a dissertation titled "Toward More Authentic Self-Reports:  An Experimental Manipulation Based on Self-Determination Theory."  The dissertation examined past methods of reducing response bias and tested a potential alternative using the basic tenets of self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985, 2000).

In 2007, Helen received her M.A. in Social Psychology from the University of Houston, with a thesis on realistic and unrealistic control beliefs in relationships, titled "Assessing Unrealistic Control Beliefs in Relationships."  As part of the requirements for a doctorate, she also completed a minor in Marketing through the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston. 

In 2004, Helen graduated magna cum laude (with high honors) from the University of Houston after earning a B.S. in Psychology and a B.A. in Communications – Media Production.  By fulfilling all of the Honors College's requirements during her time at UH and by completing a senior honors thesis on long-distance relationships (LDRs), she earned the additional distinctions of University Honors and Honors in Psychology, the full extent of honors available to an undergraduate student.  Her honors thesis, which received a "Pass with Distinction," is titled, "So Far and Yet So Close:  Predictors of Closeness in Local and Long-Distance Relationships."  Highlights of the manuscript were published as a journal article in Psi Chi's Journal of Undergraduate Research in 2006.

Research Interests

Helen's research interests are varied.  In the past, they have dealt mostly with problems or potential pitfalls in human relationships.

For example:

  • Long-distance ("geographically distant") relationships
  • Unrealistic control beliefs in relationships
  • Secrecy, or self-concealment, in relationships
  • Defensive pessimism in single people

Helen is also interested in applied topics, such as:

  • Media effects
  • Internet, privacy, and social media
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Health attitudes, behavior, and outcomes
  • Marketing strategy and consumer behavior
  • Educational assessment, literacy
  • Social functioning after traumatic brain injury (TBI)

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