Phone: (03) 53276247
Email: d.wagstaff@federation.edu.au
Room: 2W269, Churchill, Gippsland
Position: Lecturer
Discipline: Psychology


  • PhD
  • BPsych (Hons)
  • BSc

Teaching areas

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Lifespan Developmental Psychology
  • Social Psychology
  • Forensic Behavioural Science

Professional associations

  • Member, Human Behaviour and Evolution Society
  • Member, International Society for Human Ethology

Research interests

My research investigates human mating strategies, including mating preferences, attention allocation, and communication patterns, but primarily focuses on competitive tactics. Specifically, I am interested in the use of cosmetics and clothing as a mate attraction and intra-sexual competition tactic, and the effects of personality traits on mating preferences and strategies. Recently I have also been investigating social media as an avenue for competition.

Publications (last 5 years)

Wagstaff, D.L. (2019). Sexual Receptivity. In: Shackelford T., Weekes-Shackelford V. (eds) Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science. Springer, Cham. doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_262-1

Van Doorn, G., De Foe, A., Wood, A., Wagstaff, D.L., Hohwy, J. (2018). Down the rabbit hole: Assessing the influence of schizotypy on the experience of the Barbie Doll illusion. Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, 23(5), 284-298. doi: 10.1080/13546805.2018.1495623

Sherlock, M. & Wagstaff, D.L. (2018). Exploring the relationship between frequency of Instagram use, exposure to idealised images, and psychological wellbeing. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, online first publication. ​doi: 10.1037/ppm0000182

Wagstaff, D.L. & Van Doorn, G. (2018). The effect of schizotypy on the relationship between women’s red clothing and perceived sexual interest. Australian Journal of Psychology, online first publication.

Wagstaff (2018). Comparing mating motivations, social processes, and personality as predictors of women's cosmetics use. Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences. Doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/ebs0000119

March & Wagstaff (2017). Sending nudes: sex, self-rated mate value and Machiavellianism predict sending unsolicited explicit images. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 2210.

Wagstaff, Sulikowski and Burke (2015). Sex differences in preference for looking at the face or body in short-term and long-term mating contexts. Evolution, Mind and Behaviour.