Karen Shackleford and friendI'm Karen Dill-Shackleford and I'm a media psychologist. I earned my Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of MO-Columbia in 1997. Now I teach in the Media Psychology Doctoral Program at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, CA.

Some of my research has been widely cited and has been the subject of many media interviews in the US and throughout the world. I've studied and written about multiple forms of media from magazines and video games to music and meditation podcasts. Right now my principle interest is in how immersion into the world of fictional story influences our everyday lives. In other words, how are we different because we are immersed in media?

Because I've written some critical things about some aspects of certain video games, many people think I am a "media hater"! The photo above gives a better idea of my real feelings about video games.

One of my favorite “honors” is having a fictional car -- the Karin Dilletante -- named for me in Grand Theft Auto IV. The car was a tongue-in-cheek response to my criticism of the violence and sexism in that game series.  I'm just glad they didn't put me in the game as a hooker.

I'm also proud to be the author of How Fantasy Becomes Reality: Seeing Through Media Influence and the editor of the Oxford Handbook of Media Psychology (2013).

In 2000 I was asked to give expert testimony before Congress on media violence, and 2007 I testified again on misogyny in rap music lyrics. The statement on interactive media violence that I co-authored led to the APA’s Resolution on Violence in Video Games and Interactive Media.

You may enjoy reading my blog -- it's called How Fantasy Becomes Reality and is part of the Psychology Today website. I also write a blog for Oxford University Press.

I love to travel, so I've enjoyed being invited to speak at conferences in Chile, South Korea, Hungary, Luxembourg, and England -- and all across the United States. I am available for booking! 

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