Dr. Karen Wampler recently retired after six years as Professor and Chair of the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at Michigan State University. She earned a BA in Sociology from Indiana University, a MA in Sociology from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy from Purdue University. Prior to coming to Michigan State, she was a Professor of Marriage and Family Therapy, Department Chair, MFT Program Director, and Hutcheson Professor at Texas Tech University. She developed the COAMFTE-accredited doctoral program at the University of Georgia during her tenure there as assistant and associate professor. She was founder and first coordinator of the Interdisciplinary MFT Certificate Program at the University of Georgia, a collaboration with MFT, Social Work, and Counseling. She is past editor of the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy.
Her primary research foci are the application of attachment theory to understanding couple interaction, family therapy process research, and observational measures of couple and family relationships. She has authored over 50 refereed journal articles and 10 book chapters, and has brought in over one million dollars in externally funded grants. A licensed marriage and family therapist, she is a Fellow of AAMFT where she has served on numerous committees, including as a member of the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education. She is active in SRCD and in NCFR, most recently serving on the Elections Council for NCFR. Many of her former doctoral students are now faculty at institutions throughout the United States.