Eric Silver

Eric Silver

Professor of Sociology and Criminology

902 Oswald Tower
University Park , PA 16802
Office Phone: (814) 865-8714

Curriculum Vitae

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  1. Ph.D. Sociology, State University of New York at Albany, 1999



I study the relationship between morality and rule breaking/deviant behavior, and the relationship between mental disorder and violence/victimization. I have authored over 50 articles and received awards for both research and teaching.

Research Projects

Right now I'm studying (1) the influence of students' moral intuitions on their participation in the college drinking scene; (2) the consequences of child sexual abuse for the moral development of the abused child; (3) the relationship between morality and punitiveness, judgments and labeling; and (4) the effects of moral context on suicide and self-harm among young adults.

Administrative Positions

  • Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, College of the Liberal Arts (2013-2017)
  • Associate Department Head (2009-2013)
  • Director of Graduate Studies (2003-2009)

Professional Awards and Achievements

  • Winner of the 2013 Malvin E. and Lea P. Bank Outstanding Teaching Award, College of the Liberal Arts, Penn State University.
  • Winner of the 2005 Outstanding Tenure Line Teaching Award, College of Liberal Arts, Penn State University.
  • Winner of the American Society of Criminology’s 2002 Ruth Shonle Cavan Award for outstanding early career contributions to the discipline of criminology.
  • Winner of the 2002 Saleem Shah award for early career excellence, sponsored by the American Psychology-Law Society (Division 41 of the American Psychological Association) and the American Society of Forensic Psychology.
  • Co-winner of the American Psychiatric Association’s 2002 Manfred Guttmacher Award for the Oxford University Press book, Rethinking Risk Assessment: The MacArthur Study of Mental Disorder and Violence (Monahan, Steadman, Silver et al., 2001).

Editorial Boards

  • SOCIAL PROBLEMS (2008-2013)
  • CRIMINOLOGY (2003-2011)

      Research Interests:


      morality and rule breaking behavior, the relationship between mental disorder and violence/victimization, deviance