Office & Hours
Office: SZB 506D
By appointment only
(512) 471-0382 (e-mail preferred)
Courses of Instruction
EDP 386N Mindfulness, Compassion and the Self
EDP 385 Individual thru the Lifecycle
The University of Texas at Austin
Educational Psychology Dept
1 University Station D5800
Austin, TX 78712-1294
UT Mail Code: D5800
download vita (pdf)
My research interests center on the psychological health benefits of self-compassion. Self-compassion is a concept borrowed from Buddhist psychology, and entails self-kindness, feelings of interconnectedness, and mindfulness. I have developed a scale to measure the construct, and have conducted numerous studies on the topic.
University of California at Berkeley PhD 1997 Education
University of California at Berkeley MA 1992 Education
University of California at Los Angeles BA 1988 Communications
Link to publications: https://webspace.utexas.edu/neffk/pubs/listofpublications.htm
Neff, K. D. (2011). Self-Compassion: Stop beating yourself up and leave insecurity behind. New York: William Morrow.
Neff, K. D. (2009). Self-Compassion. In M. R. Leary & R. H. Hoyle (Eds.), Handbook of Individual Differences in Social Behavior (pp. 561-573). New York: Guilford Press.
Neff, K. D. & Vonk, R. (2009). Self-compassion versus global self-esteem: Two different ways of relating to oneself. Journal of Personality, 77, 23-50.
Neff, K. D., Kirkpatrick, K. & Rude, S. S. (2007). Self-compassion and its link to adaptive psyhological functioning. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 139-154.
Neff, K. D. (2003). Development and validation of a scale to measure self-compassion. Self and Identity, 2, 223-250.
- Awarded a Research Grant from the University of Texas at Austin for the study “The Psychological Correlates of Self-Compassion among Adolescents.”
Current Research Projects and Grants
Examing the effectiveness of the Mindful Self-Compassion program
The link between self-compassion and compassion for others
Research Interests and Expertise
After my doctoral training in the area of moral development and my postdoctoral training in the area of self-concept development, my research has focused on self-compassion. Self-compassion involves granting emotional warmth and kindness to oneself when one is experiencing suffering, adopting an understanding, nonjudgmental attitude toward one’s own inadequacies and failures, and recognizing that one's experience is part of shared human experience. I have developed a scale to measure self-compassion and have conducted several research studies indicating that self-compassion is strongly linked to mental health. Recently I have developed an eight-week program designed to teach self-compassion skills called "Mindful Self-Compassion." We are currently evaluating the effectiveness of the program using a wait-list control design. Finally, I have written a book called "Self-Compassion: Stop beating yourself up and leave insecurity behind" that is published by William Morrow.
Boards, Committees and Associations
- Board of Directors for the Jean Piaget Society, June 2004 - June 2007.
- Member, Jean Piaget Society
- Member, International Society for Self and Identity
- Member, Society for Research in Child Development
- Member, Society for Personality and Social Psychology