Dr. Volling studies the social and emotional development of infants and young children, and the role of family relationships in facilitating children’s developmental outcomes. She is particularly interested in the role of fathers, and the development of early sibling relationships. Her current research focuses on the transition period following the birth of a baby sibling and the older child’s adjustment after the birth (the Family Transitions Study).
Dr. Volling is currently Director and Research Professor at the Center for Human Growth and Development and Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan. Her research focuses on the social and emotional development of infants, parent-infant interaction, and the role of family relationships in facilitating children’s developmental outcomes. She has conducted extensive research on the role of fathers for infant development and is one of the leading experts on the development of infant-father attachment relationships. She is the Principal Investigator of the Family Transitions Study (FTS), a longitudinal investigation of changes in the firstborn’s adjustment and family functioning after the birth of a second child, which has received funding from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) and the Fetzer Foundation. She was the recipient of an Independent Scientist Award from NICHD and received a Faculty Recognition Award for outstanding research, teaching and service at the University of Michigan. She recently received the MICHR Distinguished Clinical and Translational Research Mentor Award. She is also a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science. Dr. Volling received her Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies at Penn State University.