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Jennifer Barton
Jennifer M. Barton
Assistant Research Professor
Summary Statement

Jenny is a developmental and family scientist who is interested in understanding how the contexts that infants and preschoolers are embedded can influence their nutrition, growth and health.

  • Center for Childhood Obesity Research - CCOR
  • Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, Human Development and Family Sciences, 2021
  • M.A., University of Texas at Austin, Human Development and Family Sciences, 2018
  • M.S., University of North Florida, General Psychology, 2016
  • B.S., University of North Florida, Psychology, concentration in Child Psychology, 2012
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Office Address
129 Noll Laboratory
University Park, PA 16802
Research Interests

Daily variability in parent-child interactions with a focus on feeding young children.

Measuring the home food environment as an indicator of child nutrition and how this environment changes as children age.

Understanding change in weight gain during early childhood through early context predictors

Developing, implementing, and evaluating effective interventions aimed at improving the health and well-being of young children and their families among high-risk populations in rural communities.


Fiese, B.H., Barton, J.M., & Sahin, E. (2023). Longitudinal changes in home food availability across the first three years of life and associations with family context predictors. Frontiers in Nutrition, 10, 1215894. 

Koepp, A.E., Barton, J.M., Berendzen, H.M., Rough, H.E., & Gershoff, E.T. (2023). Parents’ coping and mental health during COVID-19. Family Relations, 1-16. 

Tabb, K.M., Simonovich, S.D., Wozniak, J., Barton, J.M., Hsieh, W-J.W., Klement, C., Ostrowski, M.E., Lakhani, N., Meline, B., & Huang, H. (2023). WIC views and staff perceptions on the relationship between food insecurity and perinatal depression. Healthcare, 11, 68. 

Barton, J.M. (2022). Food and beverage offerings by parents of preschoolers: A daily survey study during COVID-19. Appetite, 174, 106047. 

Bichteler, A., Barton, J.M., Lumeng, J.C., & Gershoff, E.T. (2022). Patterns of childhood body mass index percentile gains as predictors of adolescent body mass index, waist circumference, and blood pressure. Academic Pediatrics, 22(5), 769-776.  

Barton, J.M., Nicholson, J.S., Truelove, H.B. (2020). Investigating the effectiveness of a community-based activity on community service attitudes. In C. Winterbottom, J. Nicholson, & D. Richard (Eds.), Community-based transformational learning: An interdisciplinary inquiry into students’ experiences and challenges (pp. 15-30). London, UK: Bloomsbury.  

Nicholson, J.S., Barton, J.M., & Simons, A. L. (2018). Ability to categorize food predicts hypothetical food choices in Head Start preschoolers. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 50, 238-246. 

Nicholson, J.S., Truelove, H.B., Barton, J.M., & Moulder, R.G. (2016). Measuring college students’ community service attitudes validly and efficiently: Development of a short version of the community service attitudes scale. Journal of Community Engagement and Higher Education, 8. DOI unavailable.  

Allen, A.B., Barton, J., Stevenson, O. (2015). Presenting a self-compassionate image after an interpersonal transgression. Self and Identity, 14, 33-50.