Dr Carissa Sharp

Dr Carissa Sharp

Department of Theology and Religion
Research Fellow

Contact details

Address
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Qualifications

  • PhD, Social and Developmental Psychology, University of Cambridge, 2013
  • MTS, Christianity and Society, Harvard Divinity School, 2008
  • BA (Hons), Psychology and Religious Studies, University of Oregon, 2006

Biography

I am a psychologist of religion, primarily focusing on people’s perceptions of the relationship between science and religion and how people think about God. 

I have previously held positions as University of Oregon, Coventry University, and most recently Newman University, where I was associate director of the Centre for Science, Knowledge, and Belief in Society. I am currently co-investigator of the “Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum Global Perspectives" project, and co-principal investigator of the "International Research Network for the Study of Science and Belief in Society" project .

Postgraduate supervision

I am happy to supervise topics within the psychology of religion, including:

Perceptions of the relationship between science and religion
Social identities and intergroup relations, particularly relating to religion, nonreligion, and/or science
Stereotyping and prejudice
How people think about God (God representations)
The complexity of people’s religious ideas and/or identities

Research

Within the psychology of religion, my research tends to focus on two broad areas.  The first is investigating perceptions of the relationship between science and religion from a social and experimental psychology perspective.  This has involved examining the roles of belief systems and social identities relating to religion, nonreligion, and science.  Additionally, my research investigates social cognition (how we think about the self and others), particularly focusing on how people think about God.  This research has implications for outcomes such as intergroup relations, stereotyping, prejudice, and mental health.  

Publications

Recent publications

Article

Leicht, C, Sharp, C, LaBouff, J, Zarzeczna, N & Elsdon-Baker, F 2021, 'Content matters: perceptions of the science-religion relationship', The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion. https://doi.org/10.1080/10508619.2021.2003111

Sharp, C 2021, 'Measures of God representations: theoretical framework and critical review', Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, vol. 13, no. 3, pp. 340–357. https://doi.org/10.1037/rel0000257

Sharp, C, Leicht, C, Rios, K, Zarzeczna, N & Elsdon-Baker, F 2021, 'Religious diversity in science: stereotypical and counter-stereotypical social identities', Group Processes and Intergroup Relations. https://doi.org/10.1177/1368430220987598

Davis, EB, Granqvist, P & Sharp, C 2021, 'Theistic relational spirituality: development, dynamics, health, and transformation', Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 401–415. https://doi.org/10.1037/rel0000219

Sharp, C & Johnson, K 2020, 'Assessing spirituality on two dimensions: closeness to God and focal orientation', The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, vol. 30, no. 1, pp. 48-67. https://doi.org/10.1080/10508619.2019.1633853

Sharp, C, Shariff, A & LaBouff, J 2020, 'Religious complexity and intergroup bias', The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, vol. 30, no. 2, pp. 73-88. https://doi.org/10.1080/10508619.2019.1635856

Johnson, K, Okun, M, Cohen, A, Sharp, C & Hook, J 2019, 'Development and validation of the five-factor LAMBI measure of God representations', Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, vol. 11, no. 4, pp. 339-349.

Johnson, K, Sharp, C, Okun, M, Shariff, A & Cohen, A 2018, 'SBNR identity: the role of impersonal God representations, individualistic spirituality, and dissimilarity with religious groups', The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, vol. 28, no. 2, pp. 121-140. https://doi.org/10.1080/10508619.2018.1445893

Sharp, C, Rentfrow, PJ & Gibson, NJS 2017, 'One God but three concepts: Complexity in Christians’ representations of God', Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 95-105. https://doi.org/10.1037/rel0000053

Hodges, SD, Sharp, CA, Gibson, NJS & Tipsord, JM 2013, 'Nearer My God to Thee: Self-God Overlap and Believers' Relationships with God', Self and Identity, vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 337-356. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298868.2012.674212

Chapter (peer-reviewed)

Sharp, C & Leicht, C 2020, Beyond Belief Systems: Promoting a Social Identity Approach to the Study of Science and Religion. in F Elsdon-Baker & B Lightman (eds), Identity in a Secular Age: Science, Religion and Public Perceptions. University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh.

Chapter

Jong, J, Poon Zahl, B & Sharp, C 2017, Indirect and implicit measures of religiosity. in R Finke & C Bader (eds), Faithful Measures: New Methods in the Measurement of Religion. New York University Press, New York, pp. 78-107.

Poon Zahl, B, Sharp, C & Gibson, NJS 2013, Empirical measures of the religious heart. in F Watts & G Dumbreck (eds), Head and heart: Perspectives from religion and psychology. Templeton Press, West Conshohocken, PA, pp. 97-124.

View all publications in research portal