Careen  Yarnal 

photo of Careen Yarnal

Associate Professor

Contact Information

802C Donald H. Ford Building
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park PA 16802


(fax) 814-867-1751


Ph.D., 2003, The Pennsylvania State University, Leisure Studies
M.Sc., 1979, University of Calgary, Canada, Geography
M.A., 1976, University of Aberdeen, Scotland, Geography

Research Interests

Adult Play and Playfulness and Positive Aging, Women’s Leisure Across the Lifespan, College Student Use of Leisure Time and Excess Alcohol Consumption, Academic Approaches to Addressing College Student Excess Alcohol Consumption

Selected Publications

Son, J., Yarnal, C., & Kerstetter, D. (2010). Engendering social capital through a leisure club for middle age and older women: Implications for health and well-being. Leisure Studies, 29(1), 67-83.

Shen, S., & Yarnal, C. (2010). Blowing open the serious leisure-casual leisure dichotomy: What’s in between? Leisure Sciences, 32(2), 162-179.

Ribeiro, N., & Yarnal, C. (2009). “It wasn’t my sole purpose for going down there”: An inquiry into the Spring Break experience and its relation with alcohol consumption, Annals of Leisure Research, 11, 351-367.

Hutchinson, S., Yarnal, C., Son, J., & Kerstetter, D. (2008). It's more than just a fun time: Coping with stress through participation in the Red Hat Society®, Ageing and Society, 28(7), 979-999. 

Yarnal, C., Chick, G., & Kerstetter, D. (2008). "I did not have time to play growing up so this is my play time. It's the best thing I have ever done for myself": What is play to older women? Leisure Sciences, 30(3), 235-252.

Kerstetter, D., Yarnal, C., Son, J., Yen, I., Baker, B. (2008). Functional outcomes through a leisure-based social network, Journal of Leisure Research, 40(4), 531-556.

Courses Taught

RPTM 120 Leisure and Human Development

RPTM 210 Introduction to Commercial Recreation and Tourism

HHD 497A Women's Leadership

Strategic Themes

  • Contexts and Social Institutions
  • Populations of Special Interest