Lab Director

LI-lf94BDr. Sakaluk is the newest member of the Social Psychology program in the Department of Psychology at the University of Victoria. Dr. Sakaluk received his training in Social Psychology and Quantitative Psychology at the University of Kansas, and then completed a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship working with Dr. Emily Impett, at the University of Toronto Mississauga, before joining the faculty at UVic.

Dr. Sakaluk is interested in applying novel methodological approaches and advanced statistical analyses to the study of romantic and sexual relationships. He is particularly interested in the study of relational and sexual norms, as well as testing social psychological theories of sexual health and wellbeing. Methodologically, Dr. Sakaluk is passionate about open science practices, and enjoys using various forms of latent variable analyses in his research, as well as conducting large-scale meta-scientific and meta-analytic reviews.

Within the Department of Psychology, Dr. Sakaluk is responsible for teaching statistics courses at the advanced-undergraduate and graduate levels. He also teaches undergraduate survey courses and seminars focusing on psychological perspectives of human sexuality.

Graduate Students


Connor Leshner is entering the graduate program in Social Psychology, and is interested in studying romantic relationships, sex, identity, cosplay, culture, and statistical methods. Connor graduated from Arizona State University with a BS in Psychological Science, a BS in Sociology, and a Minor in Women and Gender Studies. He was born in Miami, Florida and moved to Tempe, Arizona, where he grew up and completed his undergraduate education. Connor enjoys hiking, watching B-movies, listening to podcasts, and puns.


Lab Manager

MaRSS Headshot

Robyn Kilshaw is the MaRSS Lab Manager and in the last year of her undergraduate degree in Psychology. Robyn’s main research interests are in the area of traumatic stress studies, with a particular focus on the long-term effects of childhood maltreatment. With a background in Statistics, Robyn was able to combine her curiosity for trauma with her enthusiasm for advanced statistical analyses in an Honours thesis supervised by Dr. Sakaluk and Dr. Erica Woodin. Under the continued co-supervision of Dr. Sakaluk, Robyn is currently extending her Honours into an Independent Study over the 2017/2018 academic year. Robyn is thrilled to be learning about open science methods that encourage transparency in psychological research, and hopes to carry these practices forward into graduate studies in clinical psychology.

Lab Members

IMG_2954Tesla Palmatier is in her last year of studies at University of Victoria, pursuing a B.Sc. in Psychology with a minor in Gender Studies.  Tesla’s area of interests include the sexual double standard,  self esteem and self care, and the intersection of attachment and sexuality. Tesla is currently working on on an independent study under the direction of Dr. Sakaluk using reverse-correlation methodology. After completing her undergraduate studies, Tesla plans continue researching human sexuality though a graduate program. She would also like to learn how to keep plants alive.


SarahPhoto (1)Sarah Lundy is an undergraduate student at the University of Victoria, pursuing ongoing studies in psychology. Her major research interests include grief and bereavement, mindfulness-based interventions, and close relationships. She is currently working on an Independent Study project with Dr. Sakaluk, focusing on the stability of general and sexual communal strength in romantic relationships. She is also a research assistant with Dr. Jeffrey Ansloos’ Youth + Peace Collective, where she is working on the lab’s Indigenous Youth Violence Prevention Project. Outside of academics, Sarah’s diverse experience includes work in the service industry, hospice care, and providing assistance to people living with cancer. She is also passionate about travel, and has visited numerous countries in Western and Central Europe, as well as Sri Lanka, where she spent time volunteering at an orphanage and a daycare centre. Sarah plans to continue her education in psychology by applying to graduate school in the hopes of pursuing a career in clinical psychology.


Graham_headshotGraham Berlin is a fourth year Psychology major and independent study student in the MaRSS Lab. Graham has a previous Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Concordia University and is pursuing a second undergraduate degree with the goal of continuing on to graduate studies in psychology. For his independent study Graham will be examining the extent to which GLBT individuals have been excluded from sexuality research. He is hopeful that it will create more awareness regarding the exclusion of minority individuals in sexuality research and lead to more inclusive research practices in the future. Graham is also a research assistant in Dr. Erica Woodin’s lab where he has contributed to studies exploring childhood trauma and interpersonal violence.


IMG_2187 (1)Gregory Johnson is entering an Interdisciplinary Master’s program co-supervised by Dr. Sakaluk and Dr. Sheila Rabillard from the department of English, with committee support from the Departments of Theatre and Educational Psychology and Leadership (Counselling). He has an undergraduate degree in English with an Interdisciplinary minor in Psychology and Statistics, and experience working in the telecommunications industry as a project and team management consultant specializing in speech technologies. Gregory’s Interdisciplinary Master’s thesis will be focused on Betroffenheit, a dance/theatre collaboration that deals with the aftereffects of trauma. He is interested in exploring the psychopathology of trauma and the effect that art (in particular, theatre and dance) can have on the understanding of trauma, and the application of art as a tool for healing. Outside of academics, Gregory tries to make time to get outside hiking, cycling, and swimming, and enjoys live music, dance, and theatre.

Undergraduate Research Assistants

Maria Baranova, 4th year, Microbiology Major/Psyc Minor
Ipek Cukurova, 2nd year, Psychology Major
Biyun (Rebecca) Dong, 4th year, Psychology Major
Emily Raymond, 4th year, Psychology Major
MaRSS Lab Headshots
Danielle Howe, 2nd year, Psychology Major
Taylor Matson, 5th year, Biopsych Major


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