Christopher J. Soto

Professor of Psychology

Office: Davis Science Center 333 [ campus map ]
Box 5550

Phone: 207-859-5563
Fax: 207-859-5555
Mailing Address:
5550 Mayflower Hill
Waterville, Maine 04901-8855
Soto, Christopher J.


Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2008
Social and Personality Psychology

A.B., Harvard University, 2000

Areas of Expertise

  • Personality structure
  • Lifespan personality development
  • Relations between personality traits and life outcomes
  • Psychological measurement

Courses Currently Teaching

CourseCourse Title
PS111 AIntroduction to Psychology
PS251 APersonality Psychology
PS339 ASeminar in Personality Psychology
PS340 ACollaborative Research in Personality Psychology

Current Research

My research currently focuses on three key issues. The first is personality structure: How people’s specific thoughts, feelings, and behaviors cohere into broader personality characteristics that persist over time and across relevant situations. I am especially interested in questions about whether, how, and why people’s personalities might be organized differently at different times of life, or in different social contexts. For example, are personality characteristics organized in similar or different ways during childhood versus adulthood?

The second issue is lifespan personality development: When, how, and why people’s personalities change as they age. I am curious both about how people’s personalities typically change across the life span (normative change), and about why different people’s personalities change in different ways (individual differences in change).

The third issue is personality and life outcomes: How someone's personality characteristics helps shape the course of their life. I am particularly interested in understanding how personality traits influence (a) subjective well-being (e.g., whether or not someone is satisfied with their life), and (b) the political attitudes that different people hold.


For a complete list of publications, visit the Colby Personality Lab.


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