Jack W. Berry
Associate Professor
Howard College of Arts and Sciences
213 Ingalls Hall

A native of Birmingham, Jack W. Berry joined the faculty of the Psychology Department in 2009, and served as interim chair of the department from fall 2019 through spring 2021. He specializes in personality and individual differences, psychotherapy research, and psychological measurement. Much of his research has focused on forgiveness, moral identity, altruistic personality traits, and other areas in the field of positive psychology (the study of human strengths and virtues). His most recent research involves personality assessment in rehabilitation psychology, including studies of the role of temperament traits in predicting injuries among children and the influence of personality configurations on psychological adjustment among adults with traumatic injuries. In collaboration with the Jane Goodall Institute, Berry has also conducted research on personality disorders among zoo-housed chimpanzees. Berry is an active research consultant, providing statistical and measurement expertise to researchers in a wide range of scientific disciplines, including psychology, psychiatry, social work, education, and medicine. He has collaborated on many randomized clinical trials of cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic approaches to psychotherapy.

When he is not working, Berry enjoys cooking, eating, obsessing over philosophy and theology and football, and reading Nero Wolfe detective novels.

Degrees and Certifications

  • BA, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • PhD, The Wright Institute, Berkeley, CA
  • Post Doctoral Fellowships: Department of Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University; UAB Injury Control Research Center, School of Medicine, Department of Immunology-Rheumatology, University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Awards and Honors

  • Consulting Editor, Journal of Clinical Psychology, 2011–present.
  • Consulting Editor, Rehabilitation Psychology (APA Division 22), 2012–present.
  • Paper of the Year Award from American Journal of Health Promotion for co-authorship on Forgiveness Working: Forgiveness, Health, and Productivity in the Workplace. American Journal of Health Promotion, 32, 59-67, 2018.
  • Howard College of Arts & Sciences Outstanding Teaching Award, 2017.
  • Howard College of Arts & Sciences Dean’s Award for Research, 2016.
  • Frank Costin Memorial Award for Excellence. National Institute for the Teaching of Psychology (NITOP). Award for poster presentation, A classroom activity illustrating Big Five personality judgments from Facebook cues, at the 2013 annual meeting of NITOP, St. Pete Beach, Florida.
  • Statistical Consultant, Editorial Board, Rehabilitation Psychology (APA Division 22), 2008–2011.

Selected Publications

  • Witvliet, C.V.O., Wade, G., Worthington, E.L., Jr., Luna, L.R., Van Tongeren, D.R., Berry, J.W., & Tsang, J. (2020). Apology and restitution: Offender accountability responses influence victim empathy and forgiveness. Journal of Psychology & Theology, 48, 88-104.
  • Kiefer, R.P., Worthington, E..L, Jr., Wenzel, M., Woodyatt, L., & Berry, J.W. (2020). Apology and restitution in a role-play restorative justice experiment: Multiple perspectives, multiple measures. Journal of Psychology & Theology, 48, 105-117.
  • Toussaint, L., Worthington, E.L., Van Tongeren, D., Hook, J., Berry, J.W., Shivy, V.A., Miller, A.J. & Davis, D. (2018). Forgiveness working: forgiveness, health, and productivity in the workplace. American Journal of Health Promotion, 32, 59-67.
  • O’Connor, L. & Berry, J.W. (2018). The social and contextual nature of emotion: An evolutionary perspective. In S.C. Hayes & D.S. Wilson (Eds.), Evolution science and contextual behavioral science (pp.149-162), Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications.
  • Elliott, T.R., Berry, J.W., Nguyen, H.M., Williamson, M.L.C., Kalpinski, R.J., Underhill, A.T., & Fine, P.R. (2016). Does participation mediate the prospective relationships of impairment, injury severity, and pain to quality of life following burn injury? Journal of Health Psychology, 21, 2398-2408.
  • McCord, C.E., Elliott, T.R., Berry, J.W. et al. (2016). Trajectories of happiness 5 years following medical discharge for traumatic disability: Differences between insider and outsider perspectives. Journal of Happiness Studies, 17, 553-567.
  • O’Connor, L.E., Rangan, R.K., Berry, J.W., Stiver, D.J., Hanson, R.., Ark, W. & Li, T. (2015). Empathy, compassionate altruism and psychological well-being in contemplative practitioners across five traditions. Psychology, 6, 989-1000.vcvvv
  • Berry, J.W. & Schwebel, D. (2009). Configural approaches to temperament assessment: Implications for risk of unintentional injury in children. Journal of Personality, 77, in press.
  • Elliott, T.R., Berry, J.W., & Grant, J.S. (2009). Problem-solving training for family caregivers of women with disabilities: A randomized clinical trial. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 47, 548-558.
  • Dreer, L., Berry, J.W., Rivera, P., Swanson, M., Shewchuk,R., & Elliott, T. (2009). An efficient assessment of social problem solving abilities in medical and rehabilitation settings: A Rasch analysis of the Social Problem-Solving Inventory-Revised. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 65, 653-669.
  • Berry, J.W., & Chew, S.L. (2008). Improving learning through interventions of student-generated questions and concept maps. Teaching of Psychology, 35, 305-312.
  • Dreer, L.E., Elliott, T.R., Berry, J.W., Fletcher, D.C., Swanson, M., & McNeal, O.D. (2008). Cognitive appraisals, distress, and disability among persons in low vision rehabilitation. British Journal of Health Psychology, 13, 49-461.
  • Kwok, O., Underhill, A.T., Berry, J.W., Luo, W., LoBello, S.G., Yoon, M., & Elliott, T.R. (2008). Analyzing data with multilevel models: An example with individuals living with lower extremity intra-articular fractures. Rehabilitation Psychology, 53, 370-386.
  • Rivera, P., Elliott, T.R., Berry, J.W., & Grant, J.S. (2008). Problem solving training for family caregivers of persons with traumatic brain injury: A randomized controlled trial. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 89, 931-941.
  • Berry, J.W., Elliott, T.R., & Rivera, P. (2007). Resilient, undercontrolled, and overcontrolled personality prototypes among persons with spinal cord injury. Journal of Personality Assessment, 89, 292-302.
  • O'Connor, L.E., Berry, J.W., Lewis, T., Mulherin, K., & Yi, E. (2006). Empathy and depression: The moral system on overdrive. In T. Farrow (Ed.), Empathy disorders in psychopathology, Oxford University Press.
  • Berry, J.W., Worthington, E.L., Jr., O'Connor, L., Parrott, L. III, & Wade, N.G. (2005). Forgivingness, vengeful rumination, and affective traits. Journal of Personality, 73, 183-226.
  • Berry, J.W., Worthington, E.L., Jr., Wade, N.G., Witvliet, C., & Kiefer, R. (2005). Forgiveness, moral identity, and perceived justice in crime victims and their supporters. Humboldt Journal of Social Relations, 29, 136-162.
  • Worthington, E.L., Jr., & Berry, J.W. (2005). Virtues, vices, and character education. In W.R. Miller & H.D. Delaney (Eds.), Judeo-Christian perspectives on psychology: Human nature, motivation, and change (pp.145-164). Washington, DC: APA Books.
  • O'Connor, L.E., Berry, J.W., Weiss, J., & Gilbert, P. (2002). Guilt, fear, submission, and empathy in depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 71, 19-27.
  • Berry, J.W., & Worthington, E.L., Jr. (2001). Forgivingness, relationship quality, stress while imagining relationship events, and physical and mental health. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 48, 447-455.
  • Berry, J.W., Worthington, E.L., Jr., Parrott, L. III, O'Connor, L., & Wade, N.G. (2001). Dispositional forgivingness: Development and construct validity of the Transgression Narrative Test of Forgivingness (TNTF). Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 27, 1277-1290.
  • O'Connor, L. E., Berry, J. W., Weiss, J., Bush, M., & Sampson, H. (1997). Interpersonal guilt: The development of a new measure. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 53, 73-89.


  • Assessment of personality and individual differences
  • Rehabilitation Psychology
  • Positive Psychology
  • Cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic approaches to psychotherapy