Research Assistant Professor & Lecturer

Research and/or Creative Works

My research adopts a multilevel approach to understanding peer victimization and aggression, including consideration of family context (e.g., parental psychopathology), peer relationships (e.g., low social status), individual behavior, and biobehavioral processes (e.g., psychophysiology). I take a developmental psychopathology approach in my research by emphasizing transactions and bidirectional associations across levels of analysis in order to understand developmental trajectories of typical and atypical functioning.


Sullivan, A., Benoit, R., Breslend, N.L., & Forehand, R. (2019, accepted). The impact of cumulative risk on child outcomes after accounting for parental depressive affect. Journal of Family Psychology.

Sullivan, A., Breslend, N.L., Gotzman-Strolin, J., Bielawski-Branch, A., Jorgenson, J., Deaver, A., Forehand, G., & Forehand, R. (2019). Feasibility Investigation: Leveraging Smartphone Technology in Trauma-Informed Behavioral Parent Training for Foster Caregivers. Child and Youth Services Review,101, 363-371. doi: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2019.03.051

McQuade, J., Murray-Close, D., & Breslend, N.L., Blada, K., Kim, M., & Marsh, N. (2019, Online). Emotional Underarousal and Overarousal Pathways to Relational Aggression: Interactive effects of Relational Victimization, Physiological Reactivity, and Emotional Sensitivity. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology.

Rothenberg, W.A., Anton, M.T., Gonzalez, M., Khavjou, O., Breslend, N.L., & Jones, D.J. (2018, online). BPT for early-onset behavior disorders: Examining the link between treatment components and trajectories of child internalizing symptoms. Behavior Modification. doi: 10.1177/0145445518801344

Breslend, N.L., Shoulberg, E., Wagner, C., Holterman, L.A., & Murray-Close, D. (2018). Biosocial interactions between relational victimization and physiological stress reactivity in relation to anxious/depressive symptoms and cognitive biases in adolescent girls. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 64(1).

McQuade, J., Breslend, N.L., & Groff, D. (2018). Experiences of physical and relational victimization in children with ADHD: The role of social problems and aggression. Aggressive Behavior, 44(4), 416-425. doi: 10.1002/ab.21762

Peisch, V., Sullivan, A., Breslend, N.L., Benoit, R., Sigmon, S., Forehand, G., Stolin-Gotzman, J., & Forehand, R. (2018). Parental opioid abuse: A review of child outcomes, parenting, and parenting interventions. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 27(7), 2082-2099. doi: 10.1007/s10826-018-1061-0

Breslend, N.L., Shoulberg, E., Murray-Close, D., & McQuade, J. (2018, online). The social costs of being a wannabe: Moderating effects of gender and popularity on the association between popularity goals and forms of victimization. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. doi: 10.1007/s10964-018-0810-0

Breslend, N.L., Parent, J., Forehand, R., Peisch, V. & Compas, B.E. (2017). The impact of a family group cognitive-behavioral preventive intervention with families of depressed parents on youth social problems through reductions in child internalizing problems. Development and Psychopathology, 1-13. doi: 10.1017/S0954579417001821

Peisch, V., Breslend, N.L., Jones, D.J., MacFarlane, M., & Forehand, R. (2017). Young children with behavior disorders in low-income families: The role of clinic observations in the assessment of parenting. Evidence-Based Practice in Child & Adolescent Mental Health, 2(3-4), 201-211. doi: 0.1080/23794925.2017.1393638

Murray-Close, D., Holterman, L.A., Breslend, N.L., & Sullivan, A.D. (2017). Psychophysiology of proactive and reactive relational aggression. Biological Psychology, 77-85. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2017.10.005

Forehand, R., Parent, J., Peisch, V., Sonuga-Barke, E., Long, N., Breslend, N.L., & Abikoff, H.B. (2017). Do parental ADHD symptoms reduce the efficacy of parent training for preschool ADHD? A secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 97, 163-169. doi: 10.1016/j.brat.2017.08.002

Pomerantz, H., Parent, J., Forehand, R., Breslend, N.L., & Winer, J. (2017). Pubertal timing and youth internalizing psychopathology: The role of relational aggression. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(2), 416-423.

Holterman, L.A., Murray-Close, D., & Breslend, N.L. (2016). Relational victimization and depressive symptoms: The role of autonomic nervous system reactivity in emerging adults. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 110, 119-127.

Breslend, N.L, Parent, J., Forehand, R., Compas, B.E., Thigpen, J.C., & Hardcastle, E. (2016). Parental depressive symptoms and child internalizing and externalizing problems: The moderating role of interparental conflict. Journal of Family Violence, 31(7), 823-831.

Sanders, W., Parent, J., Forehand, R., & Breslend, N.L. (2016). The roles of general and technology-related parenting in managing youth screen time. Journal of Family Psychology 30(5), 641-646.

Abaied, J., Wagner, C., Breslend, N.L., & Flynn, M. (2016). Respiratory sinus arrhythmia as a predictor of disordered eating in college students: Moderation by responses to stress and parent psychological control. Eating Behaviors, 21, 109-115.

Winer, J., Parent, J., Forehand, R., & Breslend, N.L. (2016). Interactive effects of psychosocial stress and early pubertal timing on adolescent depressive and anxious symptoms: Contextual amplification in family and peer environments. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 25(5), 1375-1384.

Forehand, R., Parent, J., Golub, A., Reid, M., & Lafko, N. (2015). Involvement in childrearing and firm control parenting by male cohabiting partners in black low-income stepfamilies: Forecasting adolescent problem behaviors. Behavior Modification, 1-16.

Lafko, N., Murray-Close, D., & Shoulberg, E., (2015). Negative peer status and relational victimization: Moderating role of stress physiology. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 44(3), 405-416.

Forehand, R. Lafko, N., Parent, J., & Burt, K. (2014). Is parenting the mediator of change in behavioral parent training for externalizing problems of youth? Clinical Psychology Review, 34(8), 608-619.

Murray-Close, D., Crick, N.R., Tseng, W., Lafko, N., Burrows, C., Pitula, C., & Ralston P. (2014). Autonomic reactivity to stress and physical and relational aggression: The moderating roles of victimization, type of stressor, and child gender. Development and Psychopathology, 3(26), pp 589-603.


  • B.A. University of Vermont, 2012
  • M.A., Developmental Psychology, University of Vermont, 2015
  • Ph.D., Developmental Psychology/Developmental Psychopathology, University of Vermont, 2017


Office Location:

Dewey Hall, Room 222

Office Hours:

By appointment via email

Courses Taught

PSYS 150: Developmental Psychology
PSYS 370: Child and Adolescent Psychopathology
PSYS 374: Child Behavior Therapy