Lara Jones

Lara Jones

Associate Professor

Rm. 8306.4  (8th floor of 5057 Woodward)

Curriculum vitae



Lara Jones

Research interest(s)/area of expertise

  • Gender and affect related individual differences in the use and emotional experience of facial emojis.

  • Personality traits (e.g., narcissism, self-esteem) as predictors of self-related memory and as predictors of achievement motivation.

  • Smartphone Use: Individual differences in mind-wandering and mindfulness as predictors of social (and overall) smartphone use.

  • Item-related predictors (semantic distance, relation type, distracter salience) and individual difference predictors (creativity, working memory, autistic traits) of verbal analogy performance


Most recently, my research program has extended to investigating individual differences in smartphone use (e.g., its relation to mind-wandering and mindfulness) and in emoji valence perception (e.g., how positive or negative a facial smiley emoji appears to be; Jones et al., 2020).

I am also interested in gender and personality traits as predictors of cognitive processes and achievement motivation. In our prior research (Jones & Brunell, 2014; Jones et al., 2017), we found that higher grandiose narcissism predicted higher recall for agentic trait words (talented, clever, attractive) as well as richer autobiographical memories for agentic events (time when you felt clever). In contrast, higher self-esteem predicted better recall of both agentic and communal traits (cooperative, kind, sympathetic) and richer memories for positive communal events (time when you felt cooperative). Two ongoing projects examine how various forms of narcissism and self-esteem are differentially related to academic achievement motivation and to job-related achievement motivation in young adult men and women. 

Another line of my research focuses on verbal analogy -- specifically, on the predictors of verbal analogy performance and other reasoning tasks. Within this line of research, my collaborators and I have investigated the impact of individual differences on verbal analogy and relational reasoning performance, namely, crystallized intelligence, working memory, creativity, and autistic traits.


  • Ph.D., Psychology (Cognitive-Experimental Program), University of Georgia, 2007
  • M.S., Psychology (Cognitive-Experimental Program), University of Georgia, 2004
  • B.S., Psychology (Minor: Cognitive Science), University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2002
  • Masters in Human Resources, University of South Carolina, 1997
  • B.S., Human Nutrition & Foods, Virginia Tech, 1995

News mentions

Emoji Misinterpretations Can Muddy Business Communications (December 8, 2021), REALTOR Magazine 

Here's What It Means if You Can't Stop Sending People Emojis (June 24, 2022) Elite Daily

Selected publications

  • Wunder, Z.I., & Jones, L.L. (2024). Mindful metacognition: Attention, beliefs, and skills in the acceptance of experiences. Mindfulness, 14, 2917-2931.
  • Jones, L.L., Kmiecik, M.J., Irwin, J.L., & Morrison, R.G. (2022). Differential effects of semantic distance, distractor salience, and relations in verbal analogy. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.
  • Jones, L. L., Wurm, L. H., Norville, G. A., & Mullins, K. L. (2020). Sex differences in emoji use, familiarity, and valence. Computers in Human Behavior, 108.
  • Jones, L. L., Norville, G. A., & Wright, A. M. (2017). Narcissism, self-esteem, and the phenomenology of autobiographical memory. Memory, 25, 800-815
  • Jones, L. L., & Estes, Z. (2015). Convergent and divergent thinking in verbal analogy. Thinking & Reasoning, 21, 473-500
  • Jones, L. L., & Brunell, A. B. (2014). Clever and crude but not kind: Narcissism, self-esteem, and the self-reference effect. Memory, 22, 307-322
  • Estes, Z.*, Jones, L. L., & Golonka, S. (2012). Emotion affects similarity via social projection. Social Cognition, 30(5), 582-607.
  • Jones, L. L., & Golonka, S. (2012). Different influences on lexical priming for integrative, thematic, and taxonomic relations. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6:205
  • Jones, L. L., & Estes, Z. (2012). Lexical priming: Associative, semantic, and thematic influences on word recognition. In J. S. Adelman (Ed.), Word Recognition (Vol. 2). Hove, UK: Psychology Press


Citation index

Google Scholar

Courses taught by Lara Jones

Fall Term 2024 (future)

Winter Term 2024

Fall Term 2023

Winter Term 2023

Fall Term 2022

Winter Term 2022