Alaina Brenick, PhD

Assistant Professor, Human Development & Family Studies (Affiliate)

Research Overview

My research focuses on how children, adolescents, and young adults in regions of the world with vastly different societal messages, norms, and expectations evaluate intergroup relationships and group-based victimization. My research objectives include understanding how and why youth evaluate moral transgressions such as prejudice based exclusion, discrimination, bullying, and intergroup conflict in hopes of identifying the most appropriate and effective approaches to facilitate positive intergroup relations and peaceful coexistence. I have investigated how experiences with and evaluations of group-based discrimination are influenced by societal norms an stigmas, identity development, and intergroup contact, while also looking at the outcomes of group-based discrimination in terms of help seeking behaviors and response strategies, and stress and anxiety levels. I am currently developing a line of research that will focus on experiences of bullying among immigrant youth. This line of work will include am emphasis on the physical and mental health outcomes for these youth (e.g., increased cortisol levels, mental health diagnoses, physical injuries), as well as intervention strategies catered toward this unique population to promote effective help seeking response strategies to victimization.


2010 Post-doctoral Fellowship, Human Behaviour in Social and Economic Change (GSBC)
Jena Graduate School, Friedrich Schiller Universitat

2009 Ph.D., Human Development

2002 B.A., Psychology, Departmental honors, Magna Cum Laude

Recent Publications

Contact Information
Mailing AddressDepartment of Human Development & Family Studies
1800 Asylum Ave
West Hartford, CT 06117
Office LocationLibrary Building, Room 315 (Greater Hartford Campus)