Dr. Jennifer Rennels

( University of Nevada, Las Vegas )


(702) 895-0648
  • Institution:University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Departments: Psychology, Office Of Medical Education (adjunct)
  • Research Fields: Face Perception, Biases, Stereotypes
  • Disciplines: Psychology, Research and Experimental Psychology
  • Funding:NSF - National Science Foundation, UNLV - University of Nevada, Las Vegas


I am a professor in the Department of Psychology and an Adjunct Professor in the Office of Medical Education, School of Medicine at UNLV. I have mentored five graduate students who received their Ph.D., and one graduate student who received their M.A. I am also currently mentoring six graduate students seeking a Ph.D., and have served as a dissertation committee member for 15 graduate students. I have also mentored a student from the medical school. I have chaired or am chairing 8 thesis committees, and have served as a member of 18 thesis committees. I have chaired 7 successful qualifying activities and served or am serving as a qualifying activity/comprehensive exam committee member for 13 graduate students. I have been an honors thesis faculty advisor for two students and an honors thesis committee member for 1 student. I have also been a capstone project faculty advisor and a McNair Scholars Summer Research Institute faculty mentor for 5 students. I also served as an Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution faculty mentor for 2 students. I also mentored a UNLV Office of Undergraduate Research College of Liberal Arts Dean’s Undergraduate Research Fellow, and was the faculty mentor for two UNLV Office of Undergraduate Research students. I also served as the faculty advisor for our outreach undergraduate mentoring program. I have been at UNLV for 20 years and have also mentored 18-27 (M = 23) undergraduates in my research lab annually. Therefore, I have substantial experience mentoring students in research.


Jennifer Rennels’ research focuses on face perception/processing and development of appearance-based biases (e.g., positive and negative evaluations based on masculinity/femininity, attractiveness, sex, and race). She examines the cues individuals attend to when perceiving faces, how facial appearance impacts judgments about an individual, and how individual differences and situational factors influence perception and processing. In related work, she investigates the origins of biases, why biases are maintained, and the consequences of biases. Her research primarily involves working with infants so as to understand rudiments of face processing abilities and biases, but she also includes older children and adults in her research to study developmental trajectories and developmental differences in face perception and processing.