Dr. Utley holds a doctoral degree with specializations in industrial/organizational psychology and social psychology. She teaches a wide array of courses in the Department of Behavioral Sciences, including advanced behavioral research I & II , personality theory, psychology of aging, senior seminar, social psychology, and statistics. Dr. Utley enthusiastically embraces opportunities to support student research projects, and she regularly serves as a faculty mentor for students enrolled in our department's undergraduate research experience. In a typical semester, Dr. Utley mentors an additional six to eight student research projects. She constantly engages students, inside and outside the classroom, in ways that spark their interest in research and help them generate research hypotheses. Due to Dr. Utley's extensive involvement with students, she received the Governor's Teaching Award in 1997. In 2008, Dr. Utley added to her list of accolades when she was awarded the Faculty Advising Award at Drury.
Aside from working on student research projects, Dr. Utley maintains an active research agenda. Most of her scholarship is concerned with what social and personality psychologists call “interpersonal processes.” Dr. Utley's research presentations and publications have examined issues in conflict management, friendship, ambivalence, relationship development, leadership, and gender differences/similarities. Her works have appeared in peer-reviewed journals such as Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin and Personality and Individual Differences. She also serves as a contributing editor for the Psi Chi Journal of Psychological Research.
Prior to coming to Drury, Dr. Utley served as department chair at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri and helped develop the Center for Leadership Studies at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, Texas. She was chair of Drury's Department of Behavioral Sciences from 2002-2006 as well. However, Dr. Utley's passion lies in working closely with students. In addition to her teaching and work as a research mentor, Dr. Utley is a faculty advisor for Psi Chi, the national psychology honor society, and the Behavioral Sciences Club.
When asked to describe what she likes most about her job, Dr. Utley's instant response was: “Our students ‘rock' and I love teaching them about psychology and how to scientifically explore psychological issues.” Still, Dr. Utley has time to play the saxophone, sail, and toss Frisbees with her dogs and cat, though she concedes that the cat mostly watches.
B.A., St. Louis University, 1980
M.A., Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, 1984
M.B.A., Lindenwood University, 1999
Ph.D., University of Georgia, 1989
Drury University faculty member since 2002
Professor since 2002