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in its various manifestations in dating, marriage, cohabitation, and romantic liaisons, the...dyad is probably the single most important type of personal relationship in the life of the individual in the history of society
— Kelley (1979)

NOTE: Dr. Loving left the University of Texas February 2016 to work for a major social media company. The information below represents his bio from his time at UT. Please use the links above to access Dr. Loving's past publications. 


Dr. Timothy Loving is a faculty member in the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences within the School of Human Ecology at The University of Texas at Austin. He holds affiliate appointments at UT's Population Research Center and the Institute for Mental Health Research, and he holds a courtesy appointment in the Department of Psychology.

Dr. Loving’s research focuses primarily on how relationships affect physical and mental health. This line of research dates back to his collaborative work with Professor Janice Kiecolt-Glaser and colleagues on such topics as marriage and wound healing, the effects of perceived vs. actual support on older spouses' physiology, and the influence of spouses’ relative power on physiological reactivity to marital conflict. More recently, Dr. Loving’s research program has extended the scientific study of the link between close relationships and health beyond marital samples. One line of work focuses on physiological responses to positive relationship stressors such as falling in love and discussing marriage. His lab has also conducted work on the physiology of nonromantic relationships and contributed to basic understanding of the social support process.

Dr. Loving has also been involved in intra- and inter-disciplinary efforts to increase appreciation for and understanding of the mind-body connection within the context of personal relationships. He has co-authored several publications that highlight the implications of basic work on the psychophysiology of relationships, including several chapters on the topic of relationships and health for major handbooks. He also guest edited a special issue of Personal Relationships dedicated solely to the mind-body connection within the context of personal relationships. Finally, dating back to his graduate training with Professor Christopher Agnew, Dr. Loving has published several papers and has several more in the works on the role of social network members in others’ romantic relationships. Click here for a list of selected publications.

His research has been funded by several internal grants from The University of Texas as well as a three-year grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). 

Dr. Loving is an award-winning instructor, having received several major teaching awards at The University of Texas, and is the Director of the Polymathic Scholars Honors Program in the College of Natural Sciences. He is also co-founder, site administrator, and co-editor of ScienceOfRelationships.com, which was founded on the premise that relationships are a central part of life and that our understanding of relationships benefits from research and scientific evidence.