Karen Rudolph's directory photo.

Karen Rudolph


Primary Affiliation

Brain Connectivity and Networks


Status Affiliate Faculty

Home Department of Psychology

Phone 333-8624



  • Biography

    Karen Rudolph is a professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, an affiliate faculty member at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, and an affiliate at the Center for Social & Behavioral Science at UIUC.

    She received her doctorate in clinical psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles, and completed a clinical internship at the Neuropsychiatric Institute and Hospital (now the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior) at UCLA before joining the faculty at UIUC. She served as co-editor of the "Handbook of Developmental Psychopathology" and an associate editor for the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. She has served as a PI and co-PI on several large-scale longitudinal studies funded by the National Institutes of Health.

  • Honors
    • William T. Grant Foundation Faculty Scholars Award
    • James McKeen Cattell Sabbatical Award
    • Robert B. Cairns Carolina Consortium on Human Development Capstone Award
  • Research

    The overall goal of Rudolph’s research is to identify risk and protective processes that amplify or attenuate vulnerability to psychopathology across development, with a focus on adolescence as a stage of particular sensitivity.

    Her research uses an interdisciplinary, multi-level, multi-method approach that bridges across developmental and clinical psychology and social affective neuroscience. In particular, her research considers how personal attributes of youth (e.g., gender, temperament, emotion regulation, social motivation, coping, neuroendocrine profiles, neural processing), development (e.g., puberty, social transitions), and contexts (e.g., early adversity, stressors, family and peer relationships) intersect to contribute to the development of psychopathology, particularly depression and suicide. This research aims to understand both the origins and consequences of individual differences in risk.

    Her lab uses a variety of methodological approaches, including longitudinal survey-based research, interviews, behavior observations, experimental tasks, hormone assessments, and fMRI. Recent work also involves the development of a prevention program for adolescent depression.

  • 2022

    • Rudolph, K. D., & Dodson, J. (2022). Gender differences in friendship values: Intensification at adolescence. Journal of Early Adolescence, 42, 586–607.