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Dr. Susan Sprecher

Sociology Distinguished Professor
Sociology and Anthropology
Schroeder Hall - SCH 351
  • About
  • Education
  • Awards & Honors
  • Research

Current Courses

400.001Independent Study

374.001Personal Relationships and Social Connections

474.001Personal Relationships and Social Connections

398.002Professional Practice:Internship In Sociological Research

223.001Social Psychology

290.027Special Projects: Research Apprenticeship

291.027Special Projects:Undergraduate Teaching

291.001Undergraduate Teaching Experience In Sociology-Antropology

123.001Human Sexuality

400.004Independent Study

461.002Readings In Sociology

Teaching Interests & Areas

Susan Sprecher earned her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. She has written on interpersonal attraction, intimacy, and human sexuality, and has had articles published in the Journal of Personal Relationships. She teaches courses on social psychology, human sexuality, marriage and the family, and personal relationships.

Research Interests & Areas

Social Psychology, Marriage and the Family, Close Relationships, Sexuality. Relationship initiation; love; compassionate love; equity and exchange; sexual attitudes; Internet dating services; relationship initiation

Ph D Sociology

University of Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin

Kenneth Mary Ann Shaw Teaching Award

Illinois State University

Book, Chapter

Harasymchuck, C., REgan, P., & Sprecher, S. Desire: The pursuit of physical, psychological, interpersonal (and sexual) pleasure. The Emotionality of Social LIfe (2023): 75-91.
Sprecher, S., Russell, L., Su-Russell, C., & Schmeeckle, M. Social Networks and Extended Families. The Routledge Handbook of Family Communication. Routledge (2022): 277-293.
Sprecher, S., & Fehr, B. The Compassionate Love Scale. O. N. Medvedev et al. (EDs), Handbook of Assessment in Mindfulness. Springer (2022)
Sprecher, S. Creating Closeness and Interdependence: Results of Laboratory-Based Studies Involving Getting-Acquainted Dyads. L. Vanderdrift, C. Agnew, & X. Arriaga (EDs), Interdependence, Interaction, and Relationships. Cambridge Publishers (2020): 343-367.
Sprecher, S. Influence of Self-Disclosure in the Acquaintance Process on Changes in People's Self-Concept, How People Feel About Themselves, and How People Feel About Others. B. A. Mattingly, K. P. McIntyre, and G. W. Lewandowski (EDs), Interpersonal Relationships and Self-Concept (2020): 37-51.


Fehr, B., & Sprecher, S. Love. J. Ponzetti et al. (EDs), Macmillan Encyclopedia of Intimate and Family Relationships (2021): 542-547.
Sprecher, S., Treger, S., & Hatfield, E. Love. Encyclopedia of Quality of Life Research and Well-being Research (2nd ed.). Springer (2021)
Sprecher, S., & O'Sullivan, L. Premarital sex. Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology (2nd edition) (2021)
Roberts, L., Sprecher, S., & Roberts, L. Marital sex. J. Ponzetti et al. (EDs), Macmillan Encyclopedia of Intimate and Family Relationships (2019): 551-554.
Sprecher, S., & Fehr, B. Relationship dissolution. J. Ponzetti et al. (EDs), Macmillan Encyclopedia of Intimate and Family Relationships (2019): 714-719.

Journal Article

Kanter, J. B., Lannin, D. G., McCraig, J., Sprecher, S., Rauer, A., & Yazedjian, A. (in press). The impacts of specific program components on romantic relationship satisfaction. Family Relations.
Kanter, J. B., Lannin, D. G., Rauer, A. J., Sprecher, S., & Yazedjian, A. (2023). The longitudinal influence of cumulative risk: Is relationship education a resource? Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 0(0). Advance online publication.
Sprecher, S. Listening and responsiveness in getting-acquainted processes. Current Opinion in Psychology 52: 101645 (2023)
Sprecher, S. The vignette method: A flexible method for capstone courses and as a supplemental learning experience in research labs. College Teaching 71.2 (2023): 75-81.
Drouin, M., & Sprecher, S. Is Chatting with a Sophisticated Chatbox as Good as Chatting Online or Face to Face with a Stranger?. Computers in Human Behavior 128 (2022)


Reflections on IARR. The conference for the International Association for Relationship Research. (2021)
Kanter, J.B., Lannin, D.G., Yazedjian, A., Rauer, A., & Sprecher, S. (November, 2021). Investigating risk and resilience associated with couples’ longitudinal experiences in relationship education programming. [Paper Session]. National Council on Family Relations, Baltimore, MD. [Conference online]
Interdependence and Closeness in Getting-Acquainted Dyads. The International Association for Relationship Research. (2017)
Mate Preferences in Emerging Adulthood and Beyond: Cross-sectional and Retrospective Analyses to Examine Change. The International Association for Relationship Research. (2017)
Can I connect with both you and my social network?: Access to network-salient communication technology and get-acquainted interaction.. Mini-conference for the International Association for Relationship Research. (2015)
Heterosexual couples' perceptions of balance of the work of relationship initiation and maintenance. Society for the Personality and Social Psychology. (2015)
The Study of Get-Acquainted Interactions through the Social Interaction Paradigm. Department of Psychology; University of California - San Bernardino. (2015)
The Study of Get-acquainted Interactions Using the Social Interaction Paradigm. Department of Human and Community Development. (2015)
Elevating Positive Mood Through Getting-Acquainted Interactions: Results from Two Get-Acquainted Interaction Studies. Midwest Psychological Association Meeting. (2014)
"Self-Expansion in Initial Interactions: Effects of Perceived and Actual Similarity". Annual Conference for the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. (2014)

Grants & Contracts

Connections with Weak Ties. URG; Illinois State University. Illinois State University. (2023)
Loving Connections with Weak Ties: A Research Agenda Using a Fast Friends Procedure. John Templeton Foundation. Private. (2023)
How We See Ourselves: Self-Esteem, Perceived Physical Attractiveness and Perceptions of Being Overweight as a Function of Gender and Race. Department of Sociology & Anthropology. Illinois State University. (2022)