Faculty Experts - Rebecca Brand, Ph.D.

Rebecca Brand, Ph.D.

Rebecca Brand, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Psychology
Villanova University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Area of Expertise:

  • "Motionese" or Infant-Directed Action
  • Vocabulary Development
  • Television and Infant Development
  • Sex Differences in Emotional Displays
  • Evolutionary Theories of Attraction


Unlocking some of the mysteries of the world of infants is Dr. Brand's specialty. She researches and writes about related topics such as how television affects infant development, "motionese" or infant-directed action, and vocabulary development. Dr. Brand can also discuss the psychology of sex and relationships.


  • Ph.D., University of Oregon
  • M.S., University of Oregon
  • B.A., Vassar College

Selected Publications

  • Brand, R.J., & Shallcross, W.L., "Infants prefer motionese to adult-directed action," Developmental Science, 11, 853-861, 2008.
  • Brand, R.J., Markey, C.M., Mills, A., & Hodges, S.D., "Sex differences in self-reported infidelity and its correlates," Sex Roles, 57, 101-109, 2007.
  • Brand, R.J., Shallcross, W.L., Sabatos, M.G., & Massie, K.P., "Fine-grained analysis of motionese: eye gaze, object exchanges, and action units in infant-versus adult-directed action," Infancy, 11, 203-214, 2007.
  • Brand, R.J., & Tapscott, S., "Acoustic packaging of action sequences by infants," Infancy, 11, 321-332, 2007.

Selected Professional Experience

  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Psychology, Reed College
  • Teaching Assistant, Department of Psychology, University of Oregon
  • Instructor, Department of Psychology, University of Oregon
  • Research Coordinator, Roberta Golinkoff's Infant Lab, University of Delaware

Selected Research

  • Villanova Summer Research Fellowship and Research Support Grant, "How Do Mothers' Behaviors Affect Child Learning? : The Relationship Between Mothers, Action Modifications and Infants' Imitation," (2007).
  • National Institutes of Health R-03 Research Grant (1R03 HD049562-01), "Infant-Directed Speech and Infants’ Action Processing," (2005-2007).
  • Villanova Summer Research Fellowship and Research Support Grant, "When Actions Can't Speak for Themselves: The Role of Speech in Infants' Action Processing," (2004).
  • National Institutes of Health NRSA Pre-doctoral Fellowship, "Inhibitory Control and Word Learning," (2000-2002).

About Villanova

Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.

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