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Wendy Haight

Professor; Gamble-Skogmo Chair in Child Welfare and Youth Policy
Ph.D., University of Chicago
B.A., Reed College

Office hours:
Please e-mail for an appointment.

Areas of Interest

I am broadly interested in cultural variation in socialization practices and their impact on children’s psychosocial development. My recent research has focused on child welfare-involved families including those from rural, drug-involved U.S. families, and children with maltreatment histories who are in care in Japan.

Research Interests

I received my BA in Psychology from Reed College, where I was first exposed to social science research.  I went on to study developmental psychology at the University of Chicago, where I received my PhD, and then completed a two-year NICHD post doc in developmental psychology at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign. My education in Social Work began with my attraction to the breadth of interdisciplinary research and social scientific research strategies employed by social work scholars to address problems of social justice.  I have spent the last 16 years at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign School of Social Work where I conducted mixed-method research with an emphasis on qualitative appropaches.  My research includes investigations into how to improve parent-visitations with their young children who are in foster care; designing and evaluating a mental health and substance-misuse prevention intervention for children from rural families involved with methamphetamine and the public child welfare system; and describing child welfare systems, socialization practices, and children's experiences in Japan and Scotland.  I joined the faculty at the University of Minnesota School of Social Work in Fall 2011 to assume the Gamble-Skogmo Chair in Child Welfare and Youth Policy. 

Selected Publications

  1. Haight, W. and Miller, P. (1993). Pretending at home: Development in Sociocultural Context. Albany: State University of New York Press. (Translated into Japanese).

  2. Haight, W. (2002).  The Socialization of African - American Children at Church: A Sociocultural Perspective. New York: Cambridge University Press.

  3. Hudley, E., Haight, W., Miller, P. (2003, 2009).  Raise up a child: Human development in an African-American family.  Chicago: Lyceum Press.

  4. Haight, W. and Taylor, E. (2007).  Human behavior for social work practice: A developmental-ecological  perspective. Chicago: Lyceum Press.

  5. Haight, W., Ostler, T., Black, J. and Kingery, L. (2009).  Children of Methamphetamine-Involved Families: The Case of Rural Illinois.  New York: Oxford University Press.

  6. Bamba,S. & Haight, W. (2011). Child Welfare and Development: A Japanese Case Study.  New York: Cambridge University Press.

  7. Greene, J., Sommerfeld, P. & Haight, W. (2010). Combining methods in social work research: Fusing or Fragmenting?  In I. Shaw, B. Briar-Lawson, J. Orme & R.Ruckdeschel (Eds.) Sage Handbook of Social Work Research.London: Sage publications.

  8.  Ostler, T. and Haight, W. (2010). Viewing young foster children’s responses to visits through the lens of maternal containment: Implications for attachment disorganization.  In J. Solomon and C. George (Eds.) Attachment Disorganization, 2nd edition. Guilford Press.

  9. Huttenlocher, J., Haight, W., Seltzer, M.,  Bryk, A. and Lyons, T. (1991). Early vocabulary growth: Relation to language input and gender. Developmental Psychology, 27(2), 236-248.

  10. Haight, W. (1998). Gathering the spirit: Spiritual socialization as a protective factor in the lives of African-American Children.  Social Work, 43, 213 – 222. (Nominated for best research article of 1998 awarded by the Society for Social Work Research).

  11. Haight, W., Fung, H., Wang, X., Williams, K.  and Mintz, J. (1999).  Universal, developmental and variable aspects of young children’s play: A cross-cultural comparison of pretending at home. Child Development, 70, 1477-1488.

  12. Rhodes, J. Haight, W. and Briggs, E. (1999). The influence of mentoring on the peer relationships of foster youth in relative and nonrelative care. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 9(2), 185 – 20

  13. Haight, W., Black, J., Workman, C. and Tata, L. (2001). Parent-child interaction during foster care visits: Implications for practice. Social Work, 46, 325-3

  14. Haight, W., Mangelsdorf, S., Black, J., Giorgio. G., Tata, L., and Shoppe, S. (2002). Perspectives of parents, foster parents and child welfare workers of parent visits.Child Welfare, LXXXI, 2, 173-202.

  15. Haight, W., Kagle, J. and Black, J. (2002). Understanding and supporting parent-child relationships during foster care visits: Implications of attachment theory and research. Social Work, 48, 195-208.

  16. Haight, W., Jacobsen, T., Black, J.E., Kingery, L., Sheridan, K. and Mulder, C. (2005). In these bleak days: Parent methamphetamine abuse and child welfare in the rural Midwest. Children and Youth Services Review, 27, 949-971.

  17. Haight, W., Mangelsdorf, S., Black, J., Szewczyk, M., Schoppe, S., Giorgio, G., Madrigal, K. and Tata, L. (2005). Enhancing parent-child interaction during foster care visits: Experimental assessment of an intervention.Child Welfare, 84, 459-481.

  18. Shim, W. and Haight, W. (2006). Supporting battered women and their children: Perspectives of battered mothers and child welfare professionals. Children and Youth Services Review, 28, 620-637.

  19. Black, J., Haight, W. and Ostler, T. (2006). Mental health issues of children of methamphetamine abusers. Psychiatric Times, 24(14), 18-19.

  20. Haight, W., Ostler, T., Black, J., Sheridan, K. and Kingery, L. (2007). A child’s eye view of parent methamphetamine abuse: Implications for helping foster families to succeed. Children and Youth Services Review.

  21. Bamba, S. and Haight, W. (2007). Helping maltreated children to find their Ibasho: Japanese perspectives on supporting the well-being of children in state care. Children and Youth Services Review, 29(4), 405-427.

  22. Ostler, T., Haight, W. and Black, J. (2007). Mental health outcomes and perspectives of rural children raised by parent who abuse methamphetamine. Journal of American A

  23. Schoppe-Sullivan, S., Mangelsdorf, S., Haight, W., Black, J., Sokolowski, M., Giorgio, G. & Tata, L. (2007). Maternal discourse, attachment-related risk, and current risk factors: Associations with maternal parenting behavior during foster care visits. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 28(2), 149-165.cademy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 46(4), 500-507.

  24. Haight, W., Shim, W. & Linn, L. (2007) Mothers’ strategies for protecting children from batterers: The perspectives of battered women involved in child protective services. Child Welfare, 86(4), 41-62.

  25. Haight, W., Carter-Black, J. & Sheridan, K. (2009) Mothers’ Experience of Methamphetamine Addiction: A Case-based Analysis of Rural, Midwestern Women. Children and Youth Services Review, 31, 71-77.

  26. Bamba, S. & Haight, H. (2009). The developmental-ecological approach of Japanese child welfare professionals to supporting children’s social and emotional well-being: The practice of mimamori.Children and Youth Services Review,31, 429-439.

  27. Bamba, S. & Haight, W. (2009). Maltreated children’s emerging well-being in Japanese state care. Children and Youth Services Review, 31, 797-806.

  28. Haight, W., Finet, D., Bamba, S., & Helton, J. (2009).The beliefs of resilient African-American adolescent mothers transitioning from foster care to independent living: A case-based analysis. Children and Youth Services Review. Vol. 31, 53-62.

  29. Haight, W. (2010). The Multiple Roles of Applied Social Science Research in Evidence-informed Practice. Guest editorial, Social Work, 55(2),101-104.

  30. Haight, W., Black, J. & Sheridan, K. (2010). A mental health intervention for rural, foster children from methamphetamine-involved families: Experimental assessment with qualitative elaboration. 

  31. Haight, W., Marshall, J., Hans, S., Black, J. & Sheridan, K. (2010). “They mess with me, I mess with them”: Understanding physical aggression in rural girls and boys from methamphetamine-involved families. Children and Youth Services Review, 32(10), 1223-1234.

  32. Kayama, M. & Haight, W. (in press). Cultural sensitivity in the delivery of disability services to children: A case study of Japanese education and socialization. Children and Youth Services Review 33 (9), 1583-91., 32(10), 1446

  33. Sheridan, K., Haight, W, & Cleeland, L. (2011). The role of grandparents in preventing aggressive and other externalizing behavior problems in children from rural, methamphetamine-involved families.Children and Youth Services Review 33 (9)