Lisa Gatzke-Kopp, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Human Development and Family Studies
228 Health and Human Development Building
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park PA 16802
B.S., 1996, University of California, Santa Barbara, Biopsychology
Ph.D., 2003, University of Sourthern California, Clinical Neuroscience
At the graduate level I teach courses related to developmental biopsychology including HDFS 502, an overview course in individual differences from the biological level of analysis and HDFS 520, prenatal and infant development. At the undergraduate level I teach a course in developmental psychopathology.
Broadly speaking, my research focus is on the development of emotional and behavioral problems in childhood. I am interested in the neurobiological mechanisms that underlie emotion regulation, impulsivity and decision making, as well as examining how environmental and experiential factors impact neurobiological development. I am also involved in several collaborative projects aimed at incorporating knowledge from basic psychophysiological research into preventive-intervention programs.
In my work I collaborate extensively with prevention researchers with interests in both school and family contexts. I employ a wide range of techniques in examining neurobiological function including autonomic (ECG, IMP, EDA); central (EEG, ERP, fMRI), and peripheral (genetic, endocrine) measures. By focusing on basic mechanisms of behavior problems, my work aims to inform and evaluate both universal and targeted prevention programming. Some examples of my research include:
Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies: PATHS to Success. We have conducted two longitudinal studies on the effectiveness of a school-based socio-emotional learning prevention program for kindergarten children (one in Harrisburg and one in Baltimore). Children were given a psychophysiological assessment before being randomly assigned to an experimental condition, with follow-up assessments annually. We are examining (a) what cognitive and regulatory skills predict which children will be more responsive to treatment than others, (b) how intervention program effects influence behavioral change, (c) whether children can develop similar behavioral problems through different mechanistic pathways
Supporting Early Adolescent Learning and Social Success: SEALS II. I am currently collaborating with education researchers in developing and testing professional development programs for middle school teachers to help them better understand and manage behavioral issues and social dynamics in the classroom. I have worked closely with the team to develop training modules on the implications of changes in brain development during adolescence on behavior and behavioral management.
Assessing Cost Estimation: ACE. Examining genetic, environmental, and experiential developmental pathways that lead to the development of different phenotypic profiles of impulsive decision making. Specifically we are examining the unique pathways leading to individual differences in delay discounting, effort discounting, and probability discounting.
Family Dynamics. In collaboration with Elizabeth Skowron (University of Oregon) we are examining how parent-child interactions in real time inform our understanding of how parents support (or impede) the development of self-regulation in pre-school children even in the context of high-risk (maltreatment) settings.
Development of Self-Regulation. In collaboration with Pamela Cole (Psychology) and Nilam Ram, we are working on identifying optimal approaches to modeling the emergence of self-regulation both in real-time and over the course of early childhood.
2013-Present: Associate Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
2007-2013: Assistant Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
2008-Present: Graduate Faculty, Neuroscience Program, Pennsylvania State University
Developmental neuroscience of psychopathology, with a particular focus on how children develop behavior problems such as aggression, hyperactivity, and substance abuse. Research has shown that such problems likely evolve when innate vulnerability interacts with environmental stressors. Understanding the neurobiological dysfunction that contributes to this vulnerability informs the identification of experiential and environmental factors that exacerbate or ameliorate risk. Identification of these factors positions researchers, and eventually policy makers, to implement changes in the environment that may alter these trajectories and improve developmental outcomes.
Farmer, T. W., Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Lee, D. L., Dawes, M., & Talbott, E. (in press). Research and policy on disability: Linking special education to developmental science. Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Gatzke-Kopp, L. M. (2016). Diversity and representation: Key issues for psychophysiological science. Psychophysiology, 53, 3 – 13. Doi: 10.1111/psyp.12525
Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Willner, C. J.*, Jetha, M., K., Abenavoli, R. M.*, DuPuis, D*., & Segalowitz, S. J. (2015). How does Reactivity to Frustrative Non-Reward Increase Risk for Externalizing Symptoms? International Journal of Psychophysiology, 98, 300-309. doi:10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2015.04.018
Willner, C. J.*, Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Bierman, K., Greenberg, M., & Segalowitz, S. J. (2015). Relevance of a neurophysiological marker of selective attention for children’s learning-related behaviors and academic performance. Developmental Psychology, 51, 1148-1162.
Gates, K. M., Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Sandsten M., & Blandon, A. Y. (2015). Estimating time-varying RSA using short-time Fourier transform: A demonstration of utility using marital dyads. Psychophysiology, 52, 1059-1065. PMID: 25851933 DOI: 10.111/psyp.12428
DuPuis, D.*, Ram, N., Willner, C. J.*, Karalunas, S., Segalowitz, S. J., & Gatzke-Kopp, L.M. § (2015). Implications of ongoing neural development for the measurement of the error-related negativity in childhood. Developmental Science, 18, 452-468. PMID: 25209462
Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Greenberg, M., & Bierman, K. (2015). Children’s parasympathetic reactivity to specific emotions moderates response to intervention for early-onset aggression. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 44, 291-304. PMID: 24308798 doi: 10.1080/15374416.2013.862801
Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Jetha, M. K., & Segalowitz, S. J. (2014). The role of resting frontal EEG asymmetry in psychopathology: Afferent or efferent filter? Developmental Psychobiology, 56, 73-85. PMID: 23168718
Skowron, E. A., Cipriano-Essel, E. A.*, Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., Teti, D. & Ammerman, R. (2014). Early adversity, RSA, and inhibitory control: evidence of children’s neurobiological sensitivity to social context. Developmental Psychobiology, 56, 964-978. PMID 24142832
Fortunato, C. F.*, Gatzke-Kopp, L. M., & Ram, N. (2013). Associations between respiratory sinus arrhythmia reactivity and internalizing and externalizing symptoms are emotion specific. Cognitive and Affective Behavioral Neuroscience, 13, 238-251. http://dx.doi.org/10.3758/s13415-012-0136-4
Lisa Gatzke-Kopp vitae
- Human Development
- Domains of Health and Behavior