Brad J. Bushman studies the causes, consequences, and solutions to the problem of human aggression and violence. He was a member of President Obama’s committee on gun violence, and has testified before the U.S. Congress on the topic of youth violence. His research has challenged several myths (e.g., violent media have a trivial effect on aggression, venting anger reduces aggression, violent people suffer from low self-esteem, violence and sex sell products, warning labels reduce audience size). (One of his colleagues even calls him the "myth buster.") His research has been published in the top scientific journals (e.g., Science, PNAS), and has been featured extensively in the mass media (e.g., BBC, New York Times, NPR).
Industry Expertise (8)
Writing and Editing
Media - Online
Media - Print
Media - Broadcast
Areas of Expertise (4)
Violence in Society and Media
Advanced Research Methods in Communication
Communication in Society
University of Missouri: Ph.D., Social Psychology 1989
University of Missouri: M.A., Statistics 1990
University of Missouri: M.A., Psychology 1987
Utah State University: M.Ed., Secondary Education 1985
Weber State University: B.A., Psychology 1984
Media Appearances (4)
Empathy? Now there’s an app for that — EKU professor helping kids learn to be kind
The app was developed by Konrath and a multidisciplinary team of collaborators: Brad Bushman (Ohio State University), Rich Tolman (University of Michigan), and Winslow. Leading mobile-game developers from the technology development company HabitatSeven worked closely with the researchers to use evidence-based approaches to envision, create, and evaluate it...
More evidence that violence is contagious
New York Magazine
The latest data comes from Ohio State University communications scholars Robert Bond and Brad Bushman. In a study out this week in the American Journal of Public Health, they find that, among middle and high schoolers, having a friend commit a violent act dramatically increased the likelihood that you would, too...
Ohio State study tackles road rage factors
But according to Brad Bushman, professor of Communications and Psychology at Ohio State University, road rage is deadly. It is responsible for half of traffic deaths. Dr. Bushman just finished one of a series of ongoing studies on road rage. He shared results on Ohio State's latest study on aggressive driving...
The human brain reacts to guns as if they were spiders or snakes
But Brad Bushman, a psychology and communications professor at Ohio State University, takes a broader view. Bushman researches the psychological mechanisms behind gun violence: Does having a weapon around make us more aggressive? How about watching video games? How do we respond biologically to seeing a gun? In a recent episode of the Inquiring Minds podcast, host Indre Viskontas spoke to Bushman about what he and others in the field have found...
Recent Research (5)
Violence spreads like a disease among adolescents, study findsThe Ohio State University
Bond conducted the study with Brad Bushman, professor of communication and psychology at Ohio State. Their results appear online in the American Journal of Public Health. These results fit in with other studies that have shown that characteristics and behaviors from happiness to obesity to smoking spread within social networks, at about the same rates found in this research. “We now have evidence that shows how important social relationships are to spreading violent behavior, just like they are for spreading many other kinds of attitudes and behaviors,” Bushman said...
Consuming violent media linked to 13x surge in violent dreamsThe Ohio State University
“The media we consume can have an impact on us even when we’re sleeping,” said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University. “We knew our violent and sexual media consumption had an impact on our waking lives. Now we have evidence of how it may influence our dreams.” The study is published online in the journal Dreaming. Bushman conducted the study with Jan Van den Bulck, a professor of communication studies at the University of Michigan; and Yakup Çetin of Fatih University and Ömer Terzi of Yildiz Technical University, both in Turkey...
How does climate affect violence? Researchers offer new theoryThe Ohio State University
“Climate shapes how people live, it affects the culture in ways that we don’t think about in our daily lives,” said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University. Paul van Lange, lead author of the study and a professor of psychology at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU) added, “We believe our model can help explain the impact of climate on rates of violence in different parts of the world.”...
Sexist video games decrease empathy for female violence victimsThe Ohio State University
“Most people would look at these images and say the girl pictured has to be terrified. But males who really identified with their characters in the sexist, violent games didn’t feel as much empathy for the victim,” said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University. Although many studies have shown how violent video games can increase aggression, this research – done with Italian high school students – shows that games depicting the objectification of women create additional issues, Bushman said...
Gamers don’t notice the ads when they’re busy killingThe Ohio State University
“Killing characters in video games may be fun for players, but it appears to be bad for business,” said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University...