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Brett Holfeld

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Brett Holfeld, B.A. (Hons.) (University of Manitoba), M.Sc., Ph.D. (University of North Dakota)

Associate Professor - Psychology, School of Arts and Science

Recipient of the Grenfell Campus Engagement Award 2017-18

Phone: (709) 639-2740

Email: bholfeld@grenfell.mun.ca


Research interests/expertise

The key objective of my program of research is to foster healthy relationships for children, adolescents, and young adults in online and offline environments. My program of research broadly addresses the role of digital technology in the social and emotional development of children, adolescents, and young adults.  I am particularly interested in the longitudinal effects of risk and protective factors (measured at both individual and contextual levels) on cyber bullying and cyber victimization, and on behavioural and mental health problems. I am always willing to talk about my research with students and I am open to new ideas that could make for an interesting project.


My teaching interests relate to all areas of my graduate and postdoctoral training in social, developmental, and forensic psychology. Specifically, I teach survey courses in developmental and social psychology (PSYC 2025 and 2125), and contemporary issues courses in developmental and social psychology (PSYC 3025 and 3125). I also teach a required course in Introduction to Psychology II (PSYC 1001), an elective course in Forensic Psychology (PSYC 2150),and Independent Project in Psychology (PSYC 4950).  I am open to supervising senior honours projects and I am willing to take up to two students each year.

Representative scholarly contributions

Sample of Selected Publications

  • Holfeld, B., & Mishna, F. (online first). The development of post-traumatic stress symptoms among adolescents who experience cyber and traditional victimization over time. Journal of Youth and Adolescence Special Issue: Youth Exposure to Online Risks. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-021-01394-3
  • Holfeld, B., & Baitz, R.* (2020). The mediating and moderating effects of social support and school climate on the association between cyber victimization and internalizing symptoms. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 49(11), 2214-2228. doi: 10.1007/s10964-020-01292-0
  • Holfeld, B., Stoesz, B., & Montgomery, J. (2019). Traditional and cyber bullying and victimization among youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders: An Investigation of the frequency, characteristics, and psychosocial correlates. Journal on Developmental Disabilities, 24(2), 61-76.  
  • Holfeld, B., & Mishna, F. (2019). Internalizing symptoms and externalizing problems: Risk factors for or consequences of cyber victimization? Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 48(3), 567-580. doi: 10.1007/s10964-018-0974-7
  • Holfeld, B., & Leadbeater, B. J. (2018). The inter-related effects of traditional and cyber victimization on the development of internalizing symptoms and aggressive behaviors in elementary school. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 64(2), 220-247.
  • Holfeld, B., & Mishna, F. (2018). Longitudinal associations in children’s involvement as victimized, bullying, or witnessing cyber bullying. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 21(4), 234-239.  https://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2017.0369
  • Holfeld, B., & Leadbeater, B. J. (2017). Concurrent and longitudinal associations between Early adolescents’ experiences of school climate and cyber victimization. Computers in Human Behavior, 76, 321-328.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2017.07.037
  • Holfeld, B., & Sukhawathanakul, P.* (2017). Associations between internet attachment, cyber victimization, and internalizing symptoms among adolescents. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 20(2), 91-96.
  • Ames, M. E., Holfeld, B., & Leadbeater, B. J. (2016). Sex and age group differences in the associations between sleep duration and BMI from adolescence to young adulthood. Psychology & Health, 31(8), 976-992. doi: 10.1080/08870446.2016.1163360
  • Ruthig, J. C., & Holfeld, B. (2016). Positive thinking and social perceptions of a male vs. female peer’s cancer experience. Journal of Social Psychology, 156(2), 154-167. doi:10.1080/00224545.2015.1052361
  • Ferraro, F. R., Holfeld, B., Frankl, S.*, Frye, N.*, & Halvorson, N.* (2015). Texting/iPod dependence, executive function, and sleep quality in college students. Computers in Human Behavior, 49, 44-49. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2015.02.043
  • Holfeld, B., & Leadbeater, B. J. (2015). The nature and frequency of cyber bullying behaviors and victimization experiences among young Canadian children. Canadian Journal of School Psychology, 30(2), 116-135. doi: 10.1177/0829573514556853
  • Holfeld, B. (2014). Perceptions and attributions of bystanders to cyber bullying. Computers in Human Behavior, 38, 1-7.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2014.05.012

Current research projects and grants

Co-investigator, Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) grant, Supporting educators’ capacity to prevent dating violence and promote healthy relationships through a gender-based lens (2017-2021). 

Honours, graduate and post-graduate supervision

Honours Theses

Fall/Winter 2020-21          Abigail Poole: Making it work:            
                                          What’s important in romantic  

Fall/Winter 2020-21          Heather Collins: Smartphones 
                                          and social networking site use:     
                                          Does it really matter?  

Fall/Winter 2019-20          Sara Ford: The impact of online 
                                          experiences across social   
                                          networking platforms

Fall/Winter 2018-19          Sophia Hewitt: The impact of 
                                          smartphone technology use on 
                                          adults’ face-to-face 
                                          relationships (Ms. Hewitt is    
                                          currently completing an 
                                          Education Program at MUN)

Chair, Psychology

Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland
20 University Drive, Corner Brook, NL
A2H 5G4, Canada

Office: AS 346
Phone: (709) 639-2740
Email: bholfeld@grenfell.mun.ca

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