About Dr. Brenda Whitehead

Dr. Brenda Whitehead is an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, and teaches classes on psychology, aging, and development including Introduction to Psychology, Lifespan Development, Psychology of Aging, and Developmental Research Methods (Lab). When not teaching or doing research, Dr. Whitehead enjoys building Mega-Bloks towers with her husband and two preschool sons. 

 

Dr. Whitehead earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Lifespan Developmental Psychology at the University of Notre Dame. Her research primarily focuses on a) stress and coping processes as they relate to physical health and psychological well-being in later life, and b) factors predicting older adults' engagement in health behaviors and the long-term ramifications of this engagement (or lack thereof).​ 

 

Some of Dr. Whitehead's published work:

 

  • Mills, M.**, Whitehead, B. R., & Wrobel, N. (in press). Race and personal exposure to AD influence projected memory failure attributions and help-seeking behavior. Clinical Gerontologist.

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2019). Daily religious coping buffers the stress-affect relationship and benefits overall metabolic health in older adults. Psychology of Religion & Spirituality. Advance Online Publication. doi: 10.1037/rel0000251

  • Whitehead, B. R. (2018). Religiousness on mental health in older adults: The mediating role of social support and healthy behaviors. Mental Health, Religion, & Culture. Advance Online Publication. doi: 10.1080/13674676.2018.1504906

  • Whitehead, B. R. (2017/2019). Investigating the function spiral in later life: Aging attitudes, physical activity, and gait. Journal of Health Psychology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1359105317710814

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Blaxton, J. M. (2017). Daily well-being benefits of exercise and activity in older adults: Does time spent matter? The Gerontologist. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/geront/gnw250

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2016). Affective health bias in older adults: Considering positive and negative affect in a general health context. Social Science & Medicine. Advance online publication. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2016.07.021

  • Whitehead, B. R. (2016). Health behaviors in older adults: Considering age, affect, and attitudes. Journal of Health Psychology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1359105316631814

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2015). The effect of the financial crisis on physical health: Perceived impact matters. Journal of Health Psychology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1359105315617329

  • Blaxton, J. M., Bergeman, C. S., Whitehead, B. R., Braun, M. E., & Payne, J. D. (2015). Relationships among nightly sleep quality, daily stress, and daily affect. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences. Advance online publication. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbv060

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2014). The ups and downs of daily life:
    Age effects on the impact of daily appraisal variability on depressive symptoms. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 69(3), 387-396. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbt019

  • Scott, S. B., Whitehead, B. R., Pitzer, L. M., & Bergeman, C. S. (2013). Understanding global perceptions of stress in adulthood through tree-based exploratory data mining. In J. McArdle & G. Ritschard (Eds.), Contemporary Issues in Exploratory Data Mining in the Behavioral Sciences. New York: Taylor & Francis/Routledge.

 

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2013). The ups and downs of daily life:Age effects on the impact of daily appraisal variability on depressive symptoms. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbt019

 

  • Whitehead, B. R., & Bergeman, C. S. (2013). Everyday self-reported health bias: The role of daily affective valence and arousal. Psychology & Health, 28(7), 784-799. doi: 10.1080/08870446.2012. 759224

 

  • Scott, S.B., Bergeman, C. S., Whitehead, B. R., & Pitzer, L. (2013). How loneliness influences our perceptions of stress in midlife: Examining role and domain stressors using regression trees and random forests. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbs166

 

  • Whitehead, B. R. & Bergeman, C. S. (2012). Coping with daily stress: Differential role of spiritual experience on daily positive and negative affect. Journal of Gerontology, Psychological Sciences, 67B(4), 456-459. doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbr136

 

  • Jackson, B. R.* & Bergeman, C. S. (2011). How does religiosity enhance well-being? The role of control. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 3(2), 149-161.

 

  • Scott, S. B., Jackson, B. R.*, & Bergeman, C. S. (2011). What contributes to perceived stress in later life? A recursive partitioning approach. Psychology and Aging, 26(4), 830-843.

 

*Maiden name

**Master's Student

© 2014 by the University of Michigan-Dearborn Aging Well Lab.