Faculty - Joint/Secondary
Carl Johnson is a facuty member in Applied Developmental Psychology.
He received his doctoral degree from the University of Minnesota in Child Psychology in 1976, focused on cognitive development.
Having long investigated children’s concepts of mind and body, Dr. Johnson has recently turned attention to the development of religious and spiritual concepts like “soul” and “spirit”. His recent work, with graduate students, includes cross-national studies of the concept of “vital energy” or “life force”, as reflecting biological and spiritual understanding. He as also been working to inaugurate a new field of “developmental contemplative science”, with the aim of understanding how developmentally appropriate mindful practices may promote self-regulation in children and youth. In this field he is developing a study of young children’s capacity to attend to their breath and thoughts. And, he working on a project to integrate contemplative principles and practices in the education of teachers and other professionals who work with children and youth.
Dr. Johnson regularly teaches a seminar in the field of spiritual development or developmental contemplative science. He is always interested in collaborating with students with interests in these fields. However, he does not currently have funding to support new doctoral students.
University of Minnesota
Ph.D. in Institute of Child Development
B.A. in Psychology and Philosophy
Recent and Upcoming Courses
Mindfulness and metacognition: Children’s awareness of thinking and breathing.
May 31, 2014
Satlof-Bedrick, E. & Johnson, C. N. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Jean Piaget Society. San Francisco, CA.
Fred Rogers and the Circle of Care
Jun 10, 2013
Presentation at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, continuing education conference on "Mr. Rogers and the Psychology and Spirituality of Children". Pittsburgh, PA
Mindfulness in Children: Developing Awareness of Breathing and Thinking
Jun 6, 2013 - Jun 8, 2013
Emma Satlof-Bedrick & Carl N. Johnson. Presentation at the Annual Meeting of the Jean Piaget Society, Chicago, Illinois.
Does Vitalism Extend Beyond the Domain of Biology?: Chinese Children's Understanding of Vital Energy.
Apr 18, 2013
Melanie Nyof; Maira Roazzi; Carl N. Johnson. Presentation at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development. Seattle, Washington
Roazzi, M.; Nyhof, M. & Johnson, C. (2013). Mind, Soul and Spirit: Conceptions of Immaterial Identity in Different Cultures. Special Issue: New Trends in the Cognitive Science of Religion.