UMD Right Now Twitter Facebook Youtube Instagram

Melanie Killen

College of Education
Primary Expertise: 
Child Development

Melanie Killen is a professor of human development and quantitative methodology, and professor of psychology (affiliate). Killen’s areas of expertise include children's and adolescents' social and moral reasoning, peer relationships, prejudice and bias, gender roles, social development and the role of school environments on development. 

Killen's research has been profiled in many media outlets, including: The New York Times, The Washington Post, American Scientist, The Chronicle of Higher Education, American School Board Journal,, CNN and 

She has co-edited books and published journal articles in the area of the origins of prejudice and bias, as well as the emergence of children's understanding of fairness and equality.  Her research is funded by the NSF and the NIH for an intervention study to reduce prejudice in childhood.

Killen served as an expert witness in a school desegregation case and helped prepare two Supreme Court briefs regarding the impact of school desegregation on children’s social development. She has also served as a consultant for a federal initiative on interventions designed to reduce prejudice and to promote inclusion in U.S. elementary schools.

Ph.D. Developmental Psychology, University of California, Berkeley
M.A. Developmental Psychology, University of California, Berkeley
B.A. Psychology, Clark University