In the Group Experiences Laboratory, we integrate a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches to better understand the conditions and processes that shape our experiences in work groups and teams. Our research is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Canada Foundation for Innovation, and Mitacs. We are also working closely with the organizational partners to develop innovative solutions to optimize employee and team member experiences.

We are currently investigating how people differ in the roles (e.g., leadership, followership) they strive for and covet within teams and organizations, which traits people value in leaders and followers, and how leader-follower dynamics contribute to team and organizational functioning.

In a separate line of inquiry, we are investigating the conditions under which teams can to optimize both individual-level (e.g., psychological well-being) and group-level (e.g., teamwork proficiency) outcomes.



After completing my BSc and MSc in Kinesiology, I went on to complete my PhD in Social Psychology at Wilfrid Laurier University.  During this time, I also spent some time abroad at Bangor University in Wales as a visiting scholar at the Institute for Psychology of Elite Performance.  Before arriving at Western University, I was a SSHRC postdoctoral fellow at Nipissing University.  My research program investigates group dynamics, with a general aim of understanding how groups shape our experiences as individuals, and how individuals shape the groups to which they belong.


Alex is currently pursuing his PhD in I/O psychology under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson. His research interests at the moment include team resiliency, fairness perceptions of selection measures, and applying IO theory to marginalized work settings. Alex completed his M.Sc at Western under the supervision of Dr. Mitch Rothstein on the role of Self-regulation processes mediating between control beliefs and mental health outcomes. Outside of academia, Alex enjoys painting, practicing guitar, backpacking, playing baseball, and exploring Ontario


Noelle is currently pursuing her PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology with the joint supervision of Dr. Jennifer Robertson and Dr. Alex Benson. Noelle previously completed her MSc. at Western, where she examined the influence of hostile followership on leadership behaviour. Her research interests include leader-follower dynamics and status hierarchies in groups. Noelle is a recipient of the Douglas N. Jackson Memorial Award, awarded to the student with the most promising research potential incoming to Western University’s Industrial/Organizational Psychology program. Her hobbies include asking people when their birthday is, watching Jeopardy, and trying to find some zen on her yoga mat.


Lynden is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Industrial-Organizational psychology under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson. His research interests include how hierarchies are behaviorally developed, negotiated, and communicated within groups. Lynden completed a Master of Science degree in Social Psychology at Western under the supervision of Dr. Erin Heerey on the effect of perceived role suitability on prestige, dominance, performance, and communication. Outside of academia, Lynden enjoys playing board games, guitar, camping, and cooking.


Jennifer is currently in her first year of a MSc in Industrial/Organizational Psychology under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson. Jennifer is a recipient of the Douglas N. Jackson Award, awarded for promising research potential in Western University’s Industrial/Organization Psychology program. Jennifer is currently interested in personality and group dynamics.

Outside of academia, Jennifer enjoys listening to music, watching documentaries, as well as spending time with family and friends.


Zhuo is currently pursing his MSc. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson. His research interests include leadership and followership, group/team dynamics with a focus on individual differences and cultural variation. In his spare time, Zhuo enjoys watching movies, cooking, taking long walks and travelling.


Tina is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in Honors Specialization in Psychology. She is conducting an undergraduate thesis under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson, which looks at the relationship between team member personality and upward status disagreement in informal teams. Tina is especially interested in the assessment and implication of personality in the workplace. Outside of academia, Tina enjoys skiing, taking dance classes, drawing, and practicing guitar.


Lujane is a third year psychology student, assisting in Alex Benson's I/O psychology lab. She is pursuing an academic career in group dynamics research. Outside of  the lab, Lujane enjoys writing, volunteering with meaningful initiatives, and spending time with family. 


Virginia is currently a fifth-year undergraduate student pursuing her double degree in Honors Specialization Psychology and Honors Business Administration. She is writing her honors thesis under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson on the interrelations between personality, status, and interpersonal styles. In her free time, Virginia enjoys reading, travelling, skiing, and spending time with friends and family.


Karlee is currently in her last year of a B.A. Honour’s degree in Psychology and is working on her thesis under the supervision of Dr. Alex Benson. Karlee’s current research interests include personality and group/team dynamics. Outside of academia, Karlee enjoys listening to podcasts, playing with her dogs, and spending time with friends and family.


If you are interested in joining the lab as a volunteer, please send a completed version of the volunteer application form to


I am not accepting graduate student applications for 2020-2021.

Lab Alumni


Jeff Chamberlain completed his Master's in the School of Kinesiology working with the supervision of Dr. Benson as well as Dr. Craig Hall. His research examined the potential consequences of newcomer integration processes in elite adolescent ice hockey teams. He is currently Director of Sport Psychology.


Benson, A. J., Azizi, E., Evans, M. B., Eys, M., & Bray, S. R. (2019). How innuendo shapes impressions of task and intimacy groups. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. Advance online publication.


Benson, A. J., Jeschke, J., Jordan, C. H., Bruner, M. W., & Arnocky, S. (2019). Will they stay or will they go? Narcissistic admiration and rivalry predict ingroup affiliation and devaluation. Journal of Personality, 87, 871-888. doi:10.1111/jopy.12441

Graupensperger, S. A., Benson, A. J., Bray, B. C., & Evans, M. B. (2019). Social cohesion and peer acceptance predict student-athletes’ attitudes toward health-risk behaviors: A within- and between-group investigation. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2019.07.003


Evans, M. B., Graupensperger, S. A., Benson, A. J., Eys, M. A., Hastings, B., Gottschall, J. S. (2019). Groupness perceptions and basic needs satisfaction with fitness groups. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice. Advance online publication.


Graupensperger, S. A., Benson, A. J., Eys, M. A., Hastings, B., Evans, M. B. (2019). Perceptions of groupness during fitness classes predict exertion, enjoyment, and satisfaction: An intensive longitudinal investigation. Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology. Advance online publication.


Evans, M. B., Graupensperger, S. A., Benson, A. J., Eys, M. A., Hastings, B., Gottschall, J. S. (2019). Group structure and entitativity in exercise: Considering within- and between-group perceptions of groupness. Psychology & Health, 34, 715-732. doi:10.1080/08870446.2019.1566548


Sutcliffe, J., Benson, A. J., Bruner, M. W. (2019). Parents value competence more than warmth in competitive youth hockey coaches: Evidence based on the innuendo effect. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 43, 82-89. doi:10.1016/j.psychsport.2019.01.005


Benson, A. J., & Jordan, C. (2018).  Narcissistic followership. In A. Hermann, A. Brunell, & J. Foster (Eds.), Trait narcissism: Key advances, research methods, and controversies. Springer Publishing Company. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-92171-6

Graupensperger, S., Benson, A. J., Evans, M. B. (2018). Everyone else is doing it: The association between social identity and susceptibility to peer-influence in NCAA athletes. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 40, 117-127.

Benson, A. J., & Bruner, M. W. (2018). How teammate behaviors relate to athlete affect, cognition, and behaviors: A daily diary approach within youth sport. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 34, 119-127. 

Boroumand, S, Benson, A. J., & Eys, M. (2017). How status conflict undermines athletes’ willingness to help new teammates. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology. Advance online publication. 

Benson, A. J., & Eys, M. A. (2017). Development of the Sport Team Socialization Tactics Questionnaire: Understanding the consequences of newcomer integration processes. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 39, 13-28. doi: 10.1123/jsep.2016-0182

Benson, A. J., Hardy, J., & Eys, M. A. (2016). Contextualizing leaders’ interpretations of proactive followership. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 37, 949-966. doi: 10.1002/job.2077 

Benson, A. J., Jordan, C. H., & Christie, A. M. (2016). Narcissistic responses to subordinate role assignment: The case of the narcissistic follower. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 42, 985-999. doi: 10.1177/0146167216649608

Benson, A. J., Eys, M., & Irving, G. (2016). Great expectations: How role expectations and role experiences relate to perceptions of team cohesion. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 38, 160-172. doi: 10.1123/jsep.2015-0228

Benson, A. J., Evans, M. B., & Eys, M. A. (2016). Organizational socialization in team sport environments. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 4, 463-473. doi: 10.1111/sms.12460

Benson, A. J., Šiška, P., Eys, M., Priklerová, S., & Slepička, P. (2016). A prospective multilevel examination of the relationship between cohesion and team performance in elite youth sport. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 27, 39-46. doi: 10.1016/j.psychsport.2016.07.009

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