"As anyone who knows me will assert, I’m a dyed-in-the-wool scientist who believes that there is nothing that’s not amenable to scientific inquiry. My classes reflect this philosophy, as they all teach about not just what we know, but the methods that we use to come by that knowledge. This makes for a rigorous but stimulating learning environment."

N. Kyle Smith

Associate Professor of Psychology


B.S., Union College
M.A., Ph.D., The Ohio State University


N. Kyle Smith has been a member of the department since 2001. He is the department’s social psychologist, interested in the way that people process positive and negative information in their environment. The courses he teaches include Introductory Psychology, Social Psychology, Social Cognition, Psychology and the Law, Research Methods, and a Freshman Honors Tutorial called “The Science of Subliminal Messages.”

Areas of Interest / Expertise

  • Processing of positive and negative stimuli
  • Unconscious processing
  • Psychology and the law
  • The effects of pheromones on mood

Publications / Presentations

  • “Being bad isn’t always good: Affective context moderates the attention bias toward negative information” (Journal of Personality and Social Psychology)
  • “The affect system: What lurks below the surface of feelings?” (“Feelings and emotions: The Amsterdam Conference”)
  • “May I have your attention, please: Electrocortical responses to positive and negative stimuli” (“Neuropsychologia”)
  • “Negative information weighs more heavily on the brain: The negativity bias in evaluative categorizations” (Journal of Personality and Social Psychology)
  • “Investigations of closure processes: What source-monitoring judgments suggest about what is ‘closing’” (“Memory and Cognition”)

Contact Info


Phillips Hall #52
Ohio Wesleyan University
Delaware, OH 43015
P 740-368-3818
E nksmith@owu.edu