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Donald J Polzella

Professor Emeritus


College of Arts and Sciences: Psychology


Email: Donald J Polzella
Curriculum Vitae: Read CV


  • Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1974


Donald Polzella is the former Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Graduate Programs in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Dayton and holds the rank of Professor Emeritus in the Department of Psychology. He is the former Raymond A. Roesch, S.M. Chair in the Social Sciences. He received his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the University of Michigan in 1974. Dr. Polzella has published or presented, both here and abroad, on topics related to psychology, ergonomics, statistics, computer science and aesthetics. His work in the areas of aviation, information technology, electronic learning and family literacy had been funded by public and private agencies. Dr. Polzella's teaching and research interests focused on the history of psychology, environmental design, the psychology of the arts, primarily painting and music, and multimedia education.

Research interests

  • General experimental psychology
  • History of psychology
  • Psychology of the arts
  • E-learning

Selected publications

Polzella, D. J., Hammar, S. H., & Hinkle, C. W. (2005). The effect of color on viewers' ratings of paintings. Empirical Studies of the Arts, 23, 153-163.

Elvers, G. C., Polzella, D. J., & Graetz, K. (2003). Procrastination in online courses: Performance and attitudinal differences. Teaching of Psychology, 30, 159-162.

Polzella, D. J. (2000). Differences in reactions to paintings by male and female college students. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 91, 251-258.

Polzella, D. J., & Hassen, J. L. (1997). Aesthetic preferences for combinations of color and music. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 85, 960-962.

Chifala, W. M., & Polzella, D. J. (1995). Smell and taste classification of the same stimuli. Journal of General Psychology, 122, 287-294.

Polzella, D. J., & Montgomery, D. A. (1993). Dimensions of color harmony. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 31, 423-425.

Polzella, D. J., Gravelle, M. D., & Klauer, K. M. (1992). Perceived effectiveness of danger signs: a multivariate analysis. Proceedings of the Human Factors Society 36th Annual Meeting, 2, 931-934.