Field of Science

Power Posing for a Successful Defense

   I had my dissertation defense last Friday! In my department we present an hour long seminar about our research that is open to the public and then have a closed-door discussion with professors only to talk about the research and final write-up in more depth. Afterwords a decision is made about whether or not you will be awarded a PhD. I passed and now only have some revisions and paperwork to fill our before my PhD will be finalized. Super exciting times!

A postdoc-pal of mine sent me a link to this video a couple of weeks ago. This presentation discusses studies looking at how standing/sitting in "power poses" can influence empowerment and confidence. It is a really great presentation and something to think about for anyone who is going on an interview or who has to give a big presentation. I have to admit that when I was setting up the half hour before my presentation I was doing some power posing to get ready. My favorite, the Super Woman pose.

Amy Cuddy: Power Poses
Amy Cuddy revealed that we can actually change feelings we have about our own status through the physical positions we take with our bodies. Her research participants had higher levels of testosterone and lower levels of cortisol after only two minutes in a “power pose”. Cuddy asked if such findings can have wider implications for empowerment training.


  1. Congratulations! It is a great feeling to have your defense out of the way.

  2. Congratulations, doctor. It's been a long, sometimes treacherous road and I'm so proud of you that you've made it out shining. Well done, Jessica!

  3. Thanks for the well-wishes!

    Em - All the photos that you sent were super fun to see when Cindi presented them at my reception! Thanks for thinking to send them. Keep up the good work on your blog. I enjoy seeing the photos of your little ones growing up.

  4. I love this. A successful defense, I gather?

  5. Yeah I thought that it was a really interesting study and set of ideas. It was a successful defense. Now just a little more paperwork to turn in and PhD here I come!

  6. Congratulations, Jessica!!! I still remember the wonderful feeling the next morning... I was walking on clouds!

  7. Congratulations Jessica. That's wonderful! (Hope you'll still write your blog, though).


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