Dr Gray Atherton

Dr Gray Atherton portrait photo


Research Qualifications
I am interested in understanding how people with autism spectrum condition see the social world. Specifically, I explore individual differences in social processing and how these differences often found in people with autism also exist in the general population.
I also investigate anthropomorphism, or seeing the human in the non-human, and how this relates to social processing in autism. To investigate this I am developing virtual reality techniques that allow for anthropomorphic experiences.
My other research interest lies more broadly in embodied social processing. I am particularly interested in how movement can affect the way we see ourselves and our social partners, and how this can be used to understand special populations.
BSc Child Development – Vanderbilt University
MEd Counselling Psychology – University of Houston
PhD – Educational Psychology and Individual Differences (Special Populations) – University of Houston
Teaching Contact
EDP1001: Introduction to Educational Psychology (Module Leader)
EDP3104: Special Educational Needs (Module leader)
PSY1111: Introduction to Personality, Social and Developmental Psychology
PSY3135: Psychology Dissertation
PhD Supervision
Dr Gray Atherton
Department of Psychology
Edge Hill University
St Helen’s Road
L39 4QP
Phone: 01695 657498
Email:  Gray Atherton
Office: LP 2.59


Full-text links of these publications are available on the Edge Hill University Research Information Repository

Cross, L., Kaye, L. K., Savostijanovs, J., McLatchie, N., Johnston, M., Whiteman, L., Mooney, R., & Atherton, G. (2022). Gendered violence and sexualized representations in video games: (Lack of) effect on gender-related attitudes. New Media & Society.  https://doi.org/10.1177/14614448221075736

Atherton, G., Edisbury, E., Piovesan, A., Cross, L.  (2021 ). Autism through the ages: A mixed methods approach to understanding how age and age of diagnosis affect quality of life. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-021-05235-x

Atherton, G., & Cross, L. (2021). The Use of Analog and Digital Games for Autism Interventions. Frontiers in Psychology, 3049. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.669734

Cross, L., Whiteman, L., Ward, S., & Atherton, G. (2021). Moving From Me to We: Interpersonal Coordination’s Effects on Self-Construal. Open Psychology3(1), 50-63. https://doi.org/10.1515/psych-2020-0110

Atherton, G., & Cross, L. (2021). Gamification in autism: A review of the uses of analog and digital games in autism interventions. Frontiers in Psychology12, 3049. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.669734.

Connolly, T., Atherton, G., Cross, L., Piovesan, A., & Kaye, L. K. (2021). The wild west of measurement: Exploring problematic technology use cut off scores and their relation to psychosocial and behavioural outcomes in adolescence. Computers in Human Behavior, 106965. doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2021.106965

Crossey, B. P., Atherton, G., & Cross, L. (2021). Lost in the crowd: Imagining walking in synchrony with a crowd increases affiliation and deindividuation. PloS one16(7), e0254017. doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0254017

Atherton G., Cross, L., (2021) Reading the mind in cartoon eyes: A cartoon version of the RME Psychological Reports, doi.org/0033294120988135.

Cross, L., Atherton, G., Sebanz, N. (2021) Intentional Synchronisation affects Automatic Imitation and Source Memory. Scientific Reports11, 573. [573]. doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-79796-9

Cross, L., Micheal, J., Wilsdon, L., Henson, H.,  Atherton G.,  (2020)  Still want to help: Entrainments effects on helping behaviour after a 24-hour delay. Acta Psychologica. doi.org/10.1016/j.actpsy.2020.103062

Atherton G., Cross, L.,  (2020) Walking in my shoes: Imagined Synchrony Improves Attitudes Towards Outgroups. Psychological Studies. 1-9  doi.org/10.1007/s12646-020-00568-6

Cross, L. Faraha, M.,  Atherton, G. (2019). The animal in me: Enhancing emotion recognition in adolescents with autism using animal filters. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. doi:10.1007/s10803-019-04179-7

Atherton, G., Sebanz, N., Cross, L.  (2019). Imagine all the synchrony: Actual and imagined synchronous walking’s effects on attitudes towards marginalised groups. PlosOne, 14(5) e0216585. doi.10.1371/.02220264

Atherton G., Cross, L. (2019) Animal faux pas: Two legs good four legs bad for ToM, but not in the BAP. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 1-15. doi.10.1080/00221325.2019.1593100

Cross, L., Atherton.G, Turgeon, M. (2019). How moving together binds us together: A Review of the socio-emotional effects of interpersonal entrainment.  Open Psychology 1: 273-302. doi.10.1515-2018-0018

Cross, L., Turgeon, M., Atherton, G., (2019). Moving with the in-crowd: Interpersonal entrainment and cooperation in in vs. out -groups.  Current psychology. 10. doi.10.1007/s12144-019-00283-0

Atherton, G., Cross, L. (2018). Seeing more than human: Anthropomorphic theory of mind and autism. Frontiers in Psychology.  9:528. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2018.00528.

Atherton, G., Lummis, B., Day, S. X., & Cross, L. (2018). What am I thinking? Perspective-taking from the perspective of adolescents with autism. Autism, 23(5), 1186-1200. doi.1362361318793409.

Cross, L., Atherton, G., Wilson, A. D., Golonka, S. (2017). Imagined steps: Can mental simulation of coordinated rhythmic movement affect pro-sociality? Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 1798. 10.3389, doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01798.

Last updated on Last updated on Was this page helpful? Yes No Thanks for your feedback! Please tell us more: