FABBS 2023 Early Career Impact Award Winner Kathryn L. Humphreys, Ph.D., Ed.M. of ISDP

Kathryn L. Humphreys, Ph.D., Ed.M., Vanderbilt University, Peabody College, USA

FABBS Early Career Spotlight: Kathryn Humphreys, PhD of ISDP “Researcher Helps Infants and Toddlers Take Their First Steps on a Path to Lifelong Well-being”. Congratulations Kathryn!


Kathryn L. Humphreys, Ph.D., Ed.M., Vanderbilt University, Peabody College, USA

Dr. Kathryn Humphreys earned her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and trained in developmental psychopathology and developmental neuroscience. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Human Development at Vanderbilt University, is a member of the Clinical Science, Developmental Science, and Educational Neuroscience faculty, and directs the SEA (Stress and Early Adversity) Lab. ​

Dr. Humphreys’s research addresses core issues in the study of developmental psychopathology and investigates how early experiences, especially those that are neglectful or threatening, get “under the skin” to influence the neurobiological systems that impact life-long health. She focuses on the caregiver–infant relationship as the most profound and malleable context of early brain development.

Her work investigating early adversity explores both policy and practices regarding the impact of adversity on brain development, the impact of adversity on risk for later emotional and cognitive functioning, and the efficacy of interventions on alleviating risk later in life and the durability of those effects. Dr. Humphreys has contributed to over 160 peer reviewed publications in this area of study. Dr. Humphreys’s work has raised public awareness about critical aspects of the early caregiving environment that contribute to positive health outcomes. This work has been applied to guide policy and practice from instances of institutional (orphanage) care, foster care, as well as variations in caregiving experienced within families on child development.