Melinda Leonard, PhD
Assistant Professor (Term)
Office: Room 301-C Life Sciences
Phone: (502) 852-3018
Psi Chi Faculty Director (click to find out more)
International Service Learning & Research Coordinator (click to find out more)
- PhD – University of Kentucky – Experimental Psychology (Cognitive Developmental Studies)
- Graduate Certificate in College Teaching & Learning, University of Kentucky Graduate School
- M.S. – University of Kentucky – Experimental Psychology (Cognitive Developmental Studies)
- B.S. – University of Tennessee, Chattanooga – Psychology
My research interest focuses on the development of children ranging in age from birth to adulthood. Because development encompasses a wide variety of areas, I am currently focusing on both cognitive and social development issues. I have enjoyed collaborating with the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland and Oxford University in England on a longitudinal study focusing on children age 14-16 and the potential changes in attitudes and perceptions that may occur through their participation in a cross-community organization. Cross-community organizations designed to bring Catholic and Protestant young people/adults together in an effort to reduce prejudice, enhance forgiveness and empathy, and stimulate the “peace process” have existed in Northern Ireland for some time. Limited empirical research exists that is specific to these cross-community organizations. The current research project is designed to examine the psychological processes and action tendencies related to involvement in a cross-community organization in Northern Ireland through the use of a questionnaire. This research project is also a component of the new International Service Learning & Research Program for the Psychological & Brain Sciences Department at the University of Louisville in which teaching and research is combined to provide a capstone experience for eight to twelve undergraduate students. These students will receive applicable training in human subject protection and field research methodologies prior to departure, and will accompany me to Northern Ireland to assist with data collection in May.
Additionally, I am also interested in examining the differentiating characteristics between children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and typically developing children. Due to the high percentage of diagnosis in school-age children, this area of research is important to not only the children, but also their families, and educators alike..
- Leonard, M. A., Mayne, J., & Cairns, E. (under review). Ulster Project International: A Cross-Community Project and its Effects on Out-Group Contact.
- Leonard, M. A., Milich, R., & Lorch, E. P. (2011). The role of pragmatic language use in mediating the relation between ADHD risk factors and social skills problems. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 54, 567-579.
- Leonard, M. A., Lorch, E. P., Milich, R., & Hagans, N. (2009). Parent-child joint picture-book reading among children with ADHD. Journal of Attention Disorders, 12(4), 361-371.
- Leonard, M. A. (2004). Predicting completion vs. defection in a community-based reintegration program. Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, 40 (1/2), 133-146.
Courses Often Taught
- Honors Introductory Psychology (Undergraduate)
- Life Span Development (Undergraduate)
- Experimental Psychology (Undergraduate)
- Learning (Undergraduate)
- Cognitive Psychology (Undergraduate)