Caitlin Lombardi (She | Her)

Associate Professor

Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Lombardi is accepting graduate student applicants for the 2024-2025 academic year.

Visit Dr. Lombardi’s Applied Research on Children (ARC) Lab website.

Educational Background:

  • Ph.D., Applied Developmental and Educational Psychology, Lynch School of Education, Boston College, 2013
  • B.A. with Honors, Psychology and English, The University of Vermont, 2004

Professional Interests:

  • Role of family, early care and education, school, and community for promoting children’s cognitive, language, socioemotional, and health outcomes
  • Processes through which socioeconomic disadvantage is transmitted to children’s development
  • Contextual influences on families and links with children’s achievement and well-being
  • Effects of public policies on parents and children

Selected Professional Accomplishments:

  • Research Grants, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, 2022-2024
  • Research Grant, Annie E. Casey and Hilton Foundations, Elevating Equity: Longitudinal Trajectories of Parents and their Children in National Data, 2021-2024
  • Research Grant, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, 2020-2022
  • Research Grant, The Spencer Foundation, 2020-2021
  • Research Excellence Program Recipient, University of Connecticut, 2019-2020
  • Research Grant, American Educational Research Association, 2017-2019
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Lynch School of Education, Boston College, 2014-2016
  • Dissertation Grant, American Educational Research Association, 2012
  • Annette U. Rickel Dissertation Award, American Psychological Association, 2012
  • Legislative Staffer, United States Senate, 2004-2008

Selected Publications:

  • Cook, K. D., Fisk, E., Lombardi, C. M., & Ferreira van Leer, K. (in press). Caring for whole families:  Relationships between providers and families during infancy & toddlerhood, Early Childhood Education Journal.
  • Hatton-Bowers, H., Lombardi, C. M., Kemp, B., Decker, K. B., Virmani, E. A., Brophy-Herb, H. E., & Vallotton, C. D. (2021). Risks and resources for college students’ mental health: ACEs, attachment, and mindfulness. Journal of American College Health, 71(5), 1510–1521.
  • Jiang, Q., Markham Risica, P. M., Tovar, A., Cooksey Stowers, K., Schwartz, M., Lombardi, C., & Gans, K. M. (2023). Nutrition practices of family child care home providers and children’s diet quality, Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 55(7), 480-492.
  • Jiang, Q., Risica, P., Tovar, A., Cooksey-Stowers, K., Schwartz, M., Lombardi, C., Alhassan, S., & Gans, K. (2023). Effect of applying best practices for physical activity and screen time to family childcare homes. Preventing Chronic Disease, 20(4).
  • Lombardi, C. M., Bladen, A., Foley, M. T., Galante-DeAngelis, M., Larrabee, K., & Robinson, J. (2023). Reflective practices within an early childhood teacher preparation program, Infant Mental Health Journal, 44(4), 451-465.
  • Cook, K. D., Ferreira van Leer, K., & Lombardi, C. M. (2023). Exploring predictors and outcomes of racial/ethnic match between children and providers in Early Head Start. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 62, 275-286.
  • Lombardi, C. M. (2023). Early maternal employment and children’s school readiness: Changing associations over time? Journal of Child and Family Studies, 32, 1032-1047.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Cook, K. D., & Fisk, E. (2023). Family ecological resources and risks: The moderating role of Early Head Start. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 62, 275-286.
  • Bullinger, L. R., Gopalan, M., & Lombardi, C. M. (2022). Impacts of publicly funded health insurance for adults on children’s academic achievement. Southern Economic Journal, 89, 860–884.
  • Cavallari, J. M., Laguerre, R., Ferguson, J. M., Garza, J., Suleiman, A., Lombardi, C. M., Barnes-Farrell, J., & Dugan, A. G. (2022). The development and initial validation of a new working time scale for full-time workers with non-standard schedules. BMC Public Health, 22, 1586.
  • Dearing, E., Casey, B., Davis-Kean, P., Eason, S., Gunderson, E. Levine, S. C., Libertus, M., Lombardi, C. M., Nelson, A., Ramani, G., & Susperreguy, M. I. (2022). Socioeconomic variations in the frequency of parent number talk: A meta-analysis. Education Sciences, 12(5), 312.
  • Dugan, A. G., Decker, R. E., Zhang, Y., Lombardi, C. M., Garza, J. L., Laguerre, R. A., Suleiman, A. O., Namazi, S., & Cavallari, J. M. (2022). The role of sleep in mediating the association between precarious work schedules and well-being: A study of unionized full-time workers. Occupational Health Science.
  • Gopalan, M., Lombardi, C. M., & Bullinger, L. R. (2022). Effects of parental public health insurance eligibility on parent and child health outcomes. Economics and Human Biology, 44, 101098.
  • Jiang, Q., Risica, P., Tovar, A., Cooksey-Stowers, K., Schwartz, M., Lombardi, C., Alhassan, S., & Gans, K. (2022). Does implementing physical activity and screen time best practices in family childcare homes influence children’s physical activity? Preventing Chronic Disease, 18(4), 281-290.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Bullinger, L. R., & Gopalan, M. (2022). Better late than never: Effects of late ACA Medicaid expansions for parents on family health-related financial well-being. Inquiry, 59, 469580221133215.
  • Fisk, E. & Lombardi, C. M. (2021). Are math and behavioral skills interrelated? A longitudinal analysis in early childhood. Developmental Psychology, 57(12), 2106–2118.
  • Jiang, Q., Tovar, A., Risica, P. M., Cooksey Stowers, K., Schwartz, M., Lombardi, C., Kang, A.,  Mena, N. Z., Gans. K. M. (2021). Ethnic differences in family childcare providers’ nutrition and activity-related attitudes and barriers. Journal of Obesity, 6697006.
  • Lombardi, C. M. (2021). Family income and mothers’ parenting quality: Within-family associations from infancy to late childhood. Child and Youth Services Review, 120, 105799.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Bronson, M., Caola, L., Pezaris, E., & Casey, B. M. (2021). Examining mother-daughter dyads jointly solving addition problems: A person-centered approach. Journal of Cognition and Development, 22(4), 640-665.
  • Lombardi, C. M. & Dearing, E. (2021). Maternal support of children’s math learning in associations between family income and math school readiness. Child Development, 92(1), e39-e55.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Fisk, E., & Cook, K. D. (2021). Do child care characteristics during toddlerhood explain income-based gaps in reading and math skills at preschool? The role of caregiver reading with children. Children and Youth Services Review,131, 106285.
  • Thomson, D., Casey, B. M., Lombardi, C. M., & Nguyen, H. N. (2020). Quality of fathers’ spatial concept support during block building predicts their daughters’ early math skills – but not their sons’. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 50(3), 51-64.
  • Virmani, E. A., Hatton-Bowers, H., Lombardi, C. M., Decker, K., King, E. K., Plata-Potter, S. I., & Vallotton, C. (2020). How are preservice early childhood professionals’ mindfulness, reflective practice beliefs, and individual characteristics associated with their developmentally supportive responses to infants and toddlers? Early Education and Development, 31(7), 1052-1070.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Casey, B. M., Pezaris, E., Shadmehr, M., & Jong, M. (2019). Longitudinal analysis of associations between 3-D mental rotation and mathematics reasoning skills during middle school: Across and within genders. Journal of Cognition and Development, 20(4), 487-509.
  • Lombardi, C. M., Coley, R.L., Sims, J., Lynch, A.D. & Mahalik, J.M. (2019). Social norms, social connections, and sex differences in adolescent mental and behavioral health. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 28, 91-104.
  • Casey, B., Lombardi, C.M., Thomson, D., Nguyen, H.N., Paz, M., Theriault, C. & Dearing, E. (2018). Maternal support of early numerical concept learning predicts preschool and first grade math achievement. Child Development, 89(1), 156-173.
  • Casey, B.M., Lombardi, C.M., Pollock, A., Fineman, B., & Pezaris, E. (2017). Girls’ spatial skills and arithmetic strategies in first grade as predictors of fifth grade analytical math reasoning. Journal of Cognition and Development, 5(18), 530-555.
  • Lombardi, C.M., Casey, B.M., Thomson, D., Nguyen, H.N., & Dearing, E. (2017). Maternal support of young children’s planning and spatial concept learning as predictors of later math (and reading) achievement. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 41(4), 114-125.
  • Lombardi, C.M. & Coley, R.L. (2017). Early maternal employment and children’s academic and behavioral skills in Australia and the United Kingdom. Child Development, 88(1), 263-281.
  • Longo, F., Lombardi, C.M. & Dearing, E. (in press). Family investments in low-income children’s achievement and socioemotional functioning. Developmental Psychology, 53(12), 2273-2289.
  • Coley, R.L., Lombardi, C.M. & Sims, J. (2015). Long-term implications of early education and care programs for Australian children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 107(1), 284-299.
  • Lynch, A.D., Coley, R.L., Sims, J., Lombardi, C.M., & Mahalik, J.R. (2015). Direct and interactive effects of parent, friend, and schoolmate drinking on alcohol use trajectories. Psychology and Health, 30(10), 1183-1205.
  • Mahalik, J., Lombardi, C.M., Sims, J., Coley, R.L. & Lynch, A.D. (2015). Gender, male-typicality, and social norms predicting adolescent alcohol intoxication and marijuana use. Social Science & Medicine, 143, 71-80.
  • Coley, R.L. & Lombardi, C.M. (2014). Low-income women’s employment experiences and their financial, personal, and family well-being. Journal of Family Psychology, 28(1), 88-97.
  • Lombardi, C.M. & Coley, R.L. (2014). Early maternal employment and children’s school readiness in contemporary families. Developmental Psychology, 50(8), 2071-2084.
  • Coley, R.L. & Lombardi, C.M. (2013). Does maternal employment following childbirth support or inhibit low-income children’s long-term development? Child Development, 84(1), 178-197.
  • Coley, R.L., Lombardi, C.M., Lynch, A.D., Mahalik, J. & Sims, J. (2013). Sexual partner accumulation from adolescence through early adulthood: The role of family, peer, and school social norms. Journal of Adolescent Health, 53(1), 91-97.
  • Coley, R.L., Lombardi, C.M., Sims, J. & Votruba-Drzal, E. (2013). Early education and care experiences and cognitive skills development: A comparative perspective between Australian and American children. Family Matters, 93, 36-49.
  • Jaffee, S., Lombardi, C.M. & Coley, R.L. (2013). Using complementary methods to test whether marriage limits men’s antisocial behavior. Development and Psychopathology, 25(1), 65-77.
  • Lombardi, C.M. & Coley, R.L. (2013). Low-income mothers’ employment experiences: Prospective links with young children’s development. Family Relations, 62, 514-528.
  • Mahalik, J., Coley, R.L., Lombardi, C.M., Lynch, A.D., Markowitz, A. & Jaffee, S. (2013). Changes in health risk behaviors for males and females from early adolescence through early adulthood. Health Psychology, 32(6), 685-694.
  • Coley, R.L. & Lombardi, C.M. (2012). Dynamics of early maternal employment in low-income families. In A. Kalil, Haskins & J. Chesters (Eds.), Investing in children: Work, education, and social policy in two rich countries (pp.24-47). Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.
  • Coley, R.L. & Lombardi, C.M. (2012). Early maternal employment and childhood obesity among economically disadvantaged families in the U.S. Early Child Development and Care, 182(8), 983-998.
  • Lewin-Bizan, S., Lynch, A.D., Fay, K., Schmid, K., McPherran, C., Lerner, J.V., & Lerner, R.M. (2010). Trajectories of positive and negative behaviors from early- to mid-adolescence. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39(7), 751-763.
Caitlin Lombardi
Contact Information
Mailing Address348 Mansfield Rd U 1058 Storrs, CT 06269