Academics: Faculty

Karen Brakke, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology

Office: 404-270-5633
Fax: 404-270-5632
Location: Giles Hall, Room 324
Campus Box: 271


B.A., CarletonCollege
M.A., Georgia State University
Ph.D.,Georgia State University

Began teaching at Spelman College in 1999
Download Dr. Brakke's CV

Courses Taught:

  • PSY 217 Statistics I
  • PSY 308 Honors Seminar in Psychology
  • PSY 310 Psychology of Learning
  • PSY 318 Psychometric Instruments
  • PSY 414 Independent Study
  • PSY 417 Statistics II
  • PSY 450 Senior Seminar

Recent Awards

2008 Spelman College Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching, Senior Faculty

Recent Publications

Neely, D.J. & Brakke, K. (in press) Making the transition to college within the context of emerging adulthood. Invited chapter for K.Y. Holmes & E.A.W. Duncan (Eds.), Diverse Perspectives for College Teaching, E-book for the American Psychological Association Division 2, Teaching of Psychology.

Brakke, K. & Thompson*, P. (2012) Supervising undergraduates in community-based learning experiences: An ethical approach. In R. E. Landrum and M. A. McCarthy (Eds.), Teaching Ethically: Challenges and Opportunities Washington, DC: APA Books.

Brakke, K. & Beins, B. (2011) A blueprint for the future: From Puget Sound to your campus. In S. Baker, J. Holmes, & J. R. Stowall (Eds.), Essays from E-xcellence in Teaching, Vol. X, pp. 15 - 19. Society for Teaching of Psychology (E-book):

Landrum, R. E., Beins, B. C., Bhalla, M., Brakke, K., Briihl, D. S., Curl-Langager, R. M., Pusateri, T. P., & Van Kirk, J. J. (2009). Desired outcomes of an undergraduate education in psychology from departmental, student, and societal perspectives. In Halpern, D. F. (Ed.). Undergraduate education in psychology: A blueprint for the future of the discipline, pp. 145-160. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Brakke, K., Wilson, J. H., & Bradley, D. V. (2007) Beyond basics: Enhancing undergraduate statistics education. In D. Dunn, R. Smith, & B. Beins (Eds.), Best Practices in Teaching Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology, pp. 109-122. Mahweh, NJ: Erlbaum

Brakke, K. , Fragaszy, D.M., Simpson, K., Hoy, E., & Cummins-Sebree, S. (2007) The production of bimanual percussion in 12-to 24-month-old children. Infant Behavior and Development, 30, 2-15.

Research Interests

  • Motor and cognitive development in early childhood
  • Scholarship of teaching and learning

Professional Leadership

Chair, Department of Psychology, Spelman College

Chair, Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) Teaching Committee, 2010-2013

Co-Organizer, SRCD Developmental Science Teaching Institute, 2011, 2013

Reviewer, NSF Fellowship Panel, 2011- current

Co-Chair, Spelman College Institutional Review Board, 2009- present

Editor, Developments, the newsletter of SRCD, 2005 - 2011

Member, APA National Committee on Undergraduate Education in Psychology 2008-2010

Convener, Spelman College Quantitative Reasoning Workgroup, 2008 - 2010

Team Leader, Spelman-Smith Teagle Collaborative Quantitative Reasoning Group 2008 - 2011

Action Editor and Advisory Board Member, Online Psychology Laboratory (APA-sponsored), 2005-2010

Member, R.W. Woodruff Library Board of Trustees (ex-officio), 2005-2007