Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

David N. Sattler

David N. Sattler

  • Media Contact

Overview of research projects:

(1) International projects examining responses to large-scale traumatic events, such as natural disasters (earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis) and terrorist attacks; and ways to improve recovery efforts. Recent projects: (a) psychological responses to the Indian Ocean Tsunami in Thailand; (b) coping and distress following earthquakes in India and El Salvador; (c) evaluation, assessment, and redesign of disaster preparedness recommendations, (d) resilience and coping following the attacks on September 11, 2001; (e) a cross-national study examining preparedness and distress in U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and the United States following Hurricane Georges.

(2) Social dilemmas: Factors influencing cooperative and competitive behavior in situations where individual and collective interests are in conflict.

On December 26, 2004, a massive tsunami struck 12 countries around the Indian Ocean. More than 250,000 people lost their lives and 2.3 million were left homeless. To provide education about tsunami threats and show how the international community rallied to provide aid, in 2006 Dr. Sattler established the International Tsunami Museum in Khao Lak, Thailand. Museum donations are funding projects to help children at local village schools (see Dr. Sattler's home page for more information).

David Sattler, Geoff Kramer, Virginia Shabatay, and Doug Bernstein created innovative textbooks for psychology courses. These texts use dynamic nonfiction first-person stories to promote students' understanding of psychological concepts and cross-cultural issues. The "Psychology in Context: Voices and Perspectives" series published by Houghton Mifflin are designed for introductory psychology, abnormal psychology, lifespan development, and child development courses.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Group Processes
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Organizational Behavior


Journal Articles:

Other Publications:

  • Sattler, D. N. (2005). Teaching students about the psychology of natural disasters. Newsletter of the Society for the Teaching of Psychology, 8.
  • Sattler, D. N. (2003). Resiliency, posttraumatic growth, and psychological distress following the attacks on America. In Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, Public Entity Risk Institute, and Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems, Beyond September 11th: An account of post-disaster research, Special Publication No. 39 (pp. 315-332). Boulder, CO: Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, University of Colorado.
  • Sattler, D. N., Assanangkornchai, S., Moller, A. M., & Kesavatana-Dohrs, W. (under review). Tsunami in Thailand: Resource loss, posttraumatic stress, posttraumatic growth, and coping style at three and fifteen months.

Courses Taught:

  • Environmental Psychology
  • Introductory Psychology
  • Laboratory in Social Psychology
  • Seminar in Social Psychology
  • Social Psychology

David N. Sattler
Department of Psychology
Western Institute for Social Research
Western Washington University
Bellingham, Washington 98225-9172
United States

  • Phone: (360) 650-3525
  • Fax: (360) 650-7305

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