Ellen Peters PhD

Ellen Peters PhD
ProfessorCollege of Arts & Sciencespeters.498@osu.eduwebsite
235 Psychology Building 1835 Neil Avenue Columbus Ohio 43210
  • Cancer Control

General Research Interest

Dr. Peters conducts basic and applied research in judgment and decision making. She has been principal investigator on numerous grants from the federal government with a focus on health risk perception and decision making. She has also worked extensively with the National Cancer Institute and the Food and Drug Administration to advance the science of human decision making as it applies to health and health policy. In her research, Dr. Peters focuses on how affective, intuitive, and deliberative processes help people to make decisions in an increasingly complex world. She studies decision making as an interaction of characteristics of the decision situation and characteristics of the individual.

Research Description

Dr. Peters has three major strands of research. First, her research interests in decision making include number processing and the study of individual differences in numeracy and an intuitive sense of numbers. In recent publications, Dr. Peters and colleagues have focused on the roles of numeracy and intuitive number sense with respect to how individuals process and use numeric and non-numeric sources of information in decisions. A second central strand of research concerns how affect and emotion influence information processing and decisions. Affect appears to have multiple functions in judgment and decision processes (as information, as a common currency, as a spotlight on information, and as a direct motivator of behaviors). Third, she is interested in how information processing and decision making change in complex ways across the adult life span. She is also generally interested in issues of risk perception and risk communication in health, financial, and environmental contexts, including how to present information to facilitate its comprehension and use.

Transinstitutional Work

Senior Fellow, Center for Personalized Health Care, OSU Medical Center

Current Publications

  • Peters E, Hart PS, Tusler M, Fraenkel LNumbers matter to informed patient choices: a randomized design across age and numeracy levels.Med Decis Making 34 430-42 5/1/2014
  • Schley DR, Peters EAssessing "economic value": symbolic-number mappings predict risky and riskless valuations.Psychol Sci 25 753-61 3/1/2014
  • Emery LF, Romer D, Sheerin KM, Jamieson KH, Peters EAffective and cognitive mediators of the impact of cigarette warning labels.Nicotine Tob Res 16 263-9 3/1/2014
  • Falzer PR, Leventhal HL, Peters E, Fried TR, Kerns R, Michalski M, Fraenkel LThe practitioner proposes a treatment change and the patient declines: what to do next?Pain Pract 13 215-26 3/1/2013
  • Peters E, Klein W, Kaufman A, Meilleur L, Dixon AMore Is Not Always Better: Intuitions About Effective Public Policy Can Lead to Unintended Consequences.Soc Issues Policy Rev 7 114-148 1/1/2013
  • Carpenter SM, Peters E, Västfjäll D, Isen AMPositive feelings facilitate working memory and complex decision making among older adults.Cogn Emot 27 184-92 1/1/2013
  • Romer D, Peters E, Strasser AA, Langleben DDesire versus efficacy in smokers' paradoxical reactions to pictorial health warnings for cigarettes.PLoS One 8 e54937 1/1/2013
  • Timmermans D, Woloshin S, Trevena LJ, Zikmund-Fisher BJ, Edwards A, Gaissmaier W, Galesic M, Han PK, King J, Lawson ML, Linder SK, Lipkus I, Ozanne E, Peters EPresenting quantitative information about decision outcomes: a risk communication primer for patient decision aid developers.BMC Med Inform Decis Mak 13 Suppl 2 S7 1/1/2013

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) 460 W. 10th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210 Phone: 1-800-293-5066 | Email: jamesline@osumc.edu