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School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences - The University of Texas at Dallas

Shayla Holub


Shayla Holub
















About Shayla Holub


Dr. Holub is an assistant professor in Psychological Sciences at the University of Texas at Dallas. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Experimental Psychology at Millikin University and her doctoral degree in Developmental Psychology at Bowling Green State University. Dr. Holub studies children’s developing attitudes and behaviors and the role that parents play in child development.

Dr. Holub’s current research program explores the negative attitudes preschool-age children hold toward weight. Specifically, she studies young children’s body image and the stigma that children hold toward overweight peers. Her research has uncovered factors, such as self-perceptions and attributions, which make some children more susceptible to negative attitudes about weight.

As part of her research program, Dr. Holub also explores preschool-age children’s eating behaviors. Her current work examines how parents socialize children’s eating habits through their feeding practices, such as using food as a reward or restricting children’s food intake. Her work also examines how the parent-child relationship and parents’ own attitudes about weight provide a context for these practices.


Research Interests


My current research program is contributing to knowledge about childhood obesity. I investigate how parents socialize their children’s eating habits using multiple methods, including behavioral observation, self-report, and experiments. Current projects are being conducted to examine autonomy promoting feeding practices, feeding during infancy, feeding in South Asian families, and factors related to parents’ use of specific feeding practices. In addition, because I am interested in promoting the psychological health of young children, I examine preschoolers’ attitudes about weight and body size. Specifically, I am conducting research to examine preschoolers’ body image and their stereotypes and behaviors toward overweight peers.


Recent Publications


Holub, S. C. (2008). Individual differences in the anti-fat attitudes of preschool-children: The importance of perceived body size. Body Image, 5, 317-321.


Holub, S. C., Musher-Eizenman, D. R., Persson, A. V., Edwards-Leeper, L. A., Goldstein, S. E., &  Miller, A. B. (2005). Do preschool children understand what it means to ‘diet,’ and do they do it? International Journal of Eating Disorders, 38, 91-93.


Musher-Eizenman, D. R., & Holub, S. C. (2007). Comprehensive Feeding Practices Questionnaire: Validation of a new measure of parental feeding practices. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 32, 960-972.