Faculty Profile

Norman LI's photo

Norman LI

Full-time Faculty
Professor of Psychology
School of Social Sciences

Dr Norman Li joined SMU in 2008, coming from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was an Assistant Professor of Individual Differences and Evolutionary Psychology. Prior to his psychology career, Dr. Li worked in investment consulting and taught economics and finance in Chicago. Trained in experimental social psychology and evolutionary perspectives, Dr Li is a foremost expert on human mate preferences and mating. His research also focuses on evolutionary mismatch—a paradigm that explains modern problems and why the world is an increasingly difficult place for individuals, groups, and societies. Dr Li’s highly cited work can be found in the top journals of social and personality psychology, evolutionary psychology, and psychology more broadly. His current teaching includes both social psychology and evolutionary psychology.


  • PhD in Social Psychology, Arizona State University, 2003
  • MA in Social Psychology, Arizona State University, 2001
  • MBA in Finance, University of Michigan, 1988
  • BA in Economics, Northwestern University, 1986

Research Interests

  • Mate preferences and mate value
  • Evolutionary social psychology
  • Economic psychology
  • Mismatch of modern conditions and adaptive mechanisms

Research Advisor/Co-Research Advisor To

Course(s) Taught in SMU

  • Social Psychology
  • Evolutionary Psychology