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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology

Chang Liu

Assistant Professor

Ph.D. Penn State University, 2019

Office: JT 233D
Phone: (509) 335-4633
Lab Website: The Healthy Start Lab (Coming soon!)

Classes Taught

  • Fall 2022 Psychology 518: Lifespan Developmental Psychology

Research Interests

  • Maternal-Child Health Inequities
  • Child Social-Emotional Development
  • Developmental Psychopathology
  • Childhood Obesity
  • Research Methods (Dynamic System Approach; Behavioral Genetics Approach)

My research program centers on understanding the developmental processes and mechanisms leading to resilience vs. maladjustment in children and mothers, aiming to promote child health and well-being. My work integrates multiple levels of analysis, including prenatal adversities, genetic influences, and early parental hostility and efficacy in the study of risk and resilience within children and mothers over time. This has led to three lines of research. One line focuses on characterizing dynamic change processes for child social-emotional development and how parents and children co-regulate emotions during interactions. A second line of research examines how genes, prenatal environment (e.g., prenatal exposure to drugs), and postnatal environment work together to influence child emotional and behavioral regulation vs. maladjustment. A third line of research examines risk and resilience in minority children and mothers and how different contexts of development influence child emotional and behavioral regulation vs. maladjustment. Most of my previous work has focused on mental health outcomes. Most recently, I have become interested in examining the emergence of childhood obesity. Specifically, I have started to examine the impact of child temperament, genetic risks, and environmental exposures (e.g., prenatal exposure to drugs, neighborhood characteristics) on normative versus atypical development in child body mass index (BMI) over time.

Dr. Liu will be considering graduate student applications for Fall 2024 admission to the Clinical Psychology PhD Program.

Selected Publications

Recent Publications:

Liu, C., Zheng, Y., Ganiban, J.M., & Saudino, K.J. (in press). Genetic and Environmental Influences on Temperament Development across the Preschool Period. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry.

Liu, C., Moore, G.A., Roben C.K.P., Ganiban, J.M., Leve, L.D., Shaw, D.S., Natsuaki, M.N., Reiss, D., & Neiderhiser, J.M. (in press). Examining Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) Constructs for Anger Expression and Regulation in Toddlers. Journal of Psychopathology and Clinical Science.

Kim, Y., Williams, A., Liu, C., & Zhou, Q. (2022). Dynamic Associations among Emotion Regulation, Expressed Affect, and Inhibitory Control in Preschoolers from Low-income Immigrant Families. Emotion.

Aris, I. M., Perng, W., Dabelea, D., Ganiban, J. M., Liu, C., Marceau, K., … & Wright, R. (2022). Analysis of Early-Life Growth and Age at Pubertal Onset in US Children. JAMA network open, 5(2), e2146873-e2146873.

Ganiban, J. M., Liu, C., Zappaterra, L., An, S., Natsuaki, M. N., Neiderhiser, J. M., Reiss, D., Shaw, D.S., & Leve, L.D. (2021). Gene × Environment Interactions in the Development of Preschool Effortful Control, and Its Implications for Childhood Externalizing Behavior. Behavior Genetics, 51, 448–462. doi: 10.1007/s10519-021-10073-9

Shewark, E.A., Ramos, A.M., Liu, C., Ganiban, J.M., Fosco, G., Shaw, D.S., Reiss, D., Natsuaki, M.N., Leve, L.D., & Neiderhiser, J.M. (2021). The Role of Child Negative Emotionality in Parenting and Child Adjustment: Gene-Environment Interplay. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. doi: 10.1111/jcpp.13420

Bray, B., Liu, C., Roben C.K.P., Leve, L.D., Shaw, D.S., Ganiban, J.M., Reiss, D., Natsuaki, M.N., & Neiderhiser, J.M. (2020). Inherited and Environmental Moderators of Mother-Child Behavioral Contingency and Contingent Negativity at 27 Months. Infant Behavior and Development. doi: 10.1016/j.infbeh.2020.101478

Liu, C., Ji, L., Chow, S.M., Kang, B., Leve, L.D., Shaw, D.S., Ganiban, J.M., Natsuaki, M.N., Reiss, D., & Neiderhiser, J.M. (2020). Child Effects on Parental Negativity: The Role of Heritable and Prenatal Factors. Child Development, 91: e1064-e1081. doi:10.1111/cdev.13404

Cree, R., Liu, C., Gueorguieva, R., Neiderhiser, J., Leve, L., Connell, C., Shaw, D.S., Natsuaki, M.N., Ganiban, J.M., Beekman, C., Smith M.V., & Reiss, D. (2020). Using an adoption design to test genetically based differences in risk for child behavior problems in response to home environmental influences. Development and Psychopathology, 1-19. doi: 10.1017/S0954579420000450

Williams, A., Srinivasan, M., Liu, C., Lee, P., & Zhou, Q. (2020). Why do bilinguals code-switch when emotional? Insights from immigrant parent–child interactions. Emotion, 20(5), 830–841. doi: 10.1037/emo0000568