Publication Date

Fall 2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Cheryl Chancellor-Freeland

Subject Areas



Power posing is a concept that has garnered widespread attention due to claims thatan expansive powerful posture can improve self-perceptions of power, trigger changes in hormone levels, and improve behavioral outcomes including enhanced performance in social evaluative situations. Recently, these claims have been challenged by studies that failed to replicate the power boosting effects of expansive poses. This study aimed to address inconsistencies in the power posing literature and replicate original findings while controlling for potential effects of experimenter bias and touch. It was predicted that a high-power pose would reduce cortisol, increase perceptions of power, and improve performance. To test this, 60 undergraduate participants were recruited and assigned to a high-power or low-power group. The TSST was utilized to induce psychosocial stress. Cortisol was examined as a physiological marker of stress via salivary samples. Perceived power was measured prior to and following power posing and stress induction. Performance was scored via the SPES, a scale designed to systematically evaluate TSST performance. Findings did not reveal any significant differences between the high-power and low-power group for any dependent measures, and the results are discussed in the context of previous findings. This experiment joins the growing number of studies that have examined the effects of power posing and have been unable to replicate previous findings.