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Department ofPsychology

Birgit Koopmann-Holm

Birgit Koopmann-Holm
Birgit Koopmann-Holm

Assistant Professor

Educational Background

Ph.D., Stanford University

German "Diplom", University of Heidelberg, Germany


The goal of my research is to advance our understanding of the ways in which culture shapes how we think, feel, and behave. Specifically, I examine how cultural factors (e.g., values, religious beliefs, and engagement in cultural practices like meditation) shape people’s emotional lives. I am particularly interested in cultural differences in people’s views of negative emotions and crying and the implications these differences have for how people respond to suffering (e.g., compassion) as well as for health and well-being.

  • PSYC 1: General Psychology 1
  • PSYC 53: Statistics and Methods Practicum
  • PSYC 141: Advanced Topics in Culture and Emotion
  • PSYC 160: Personality & Affective Science
  • PSYC 162: Cultural Psychology
  • PSYC 43: Research Methods in Psychology
  • PSYC 117: Health Psychology
  • PSYC 166: Human Neuropsychology

* Denotes student co-author
+ Denotes equal contribution

Koopmann-Holm, B., Bartel, K.*+, Bin Meshar, M.*+, & Yang, H. E.*+ (in press). Seeing the whole picture? Avoided negative affect and processing of others’ suffering. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

Koopmann-Holm, B., Sze, J., Jinpa, T., & Tsai, J. L. (2019). Compassion mediation increases optimism towards a transgressorCognition and Emotion. Advance online publication.

Bruchmann, K., Koopmann-Holm, B., & Scherer, A. (2018). Seeing beyond political affiliations: The mediating role of perceived moral foundations on the partisan similarity-liking effect. PLoS ONE 13(8),e0202101.

Sims, T., Koopmann-Holm, B., Young, H. R., Jiang, D., Fung, H. & Tsai, J. L. (2018). Asian Americans respond less favorably to excitement (vs. calm)-focused physicians compared to European Americans. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 24, 1-14.

Koopmann-Holm, B. & Tsai, J. L. (2017). The cultural shaping of compassion. In E. M. Seppälä, E. Simon-Thomas, S. L. Brown, M. C. Worline, C. D. Cameron, & J. R. Doty (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of compassion science (pp. 273-285). New York: Oxford University Press.

Koopmann-Holm, B. & O’Connor, A. J. (2017). Alan Baddeley and Graham Hitch’s Working Memory. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Ford, B. Q., Dmitrieva, J. O., Heller, D., Chentsova-Dutton, Y., Grossmann, I., Tamir, M., Uchida, Y., Koopmann-Holm, B., Floerke, V. A., Uhrig, M., Bokhan, T. & Mauss, I. B. (2015). Culture shapes whether the pursuit of happiness predicts higher or lower well-being. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 144, 1053-1062.

Koopmann-Holm, B. & Tsai, J. L. (2014). Focusing on the negative: Cultural differences in expressions of sympathy. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 107, 1092-1115.

Sims, T., Tsai, J. L., Koopmann-Holm, B., Thomas, E. A. C., & Goldstein, M. K. (2014). Choosing a physician depends on how you want to feel: The role of ideal affect in health- related decision making. Emotion, 14, 187-192.

Tsai, J. L., Koopmann-Holm, B., Miyazaki, M., & Ochs, C. (2013). The religious shaping of feeling: Implications of Affect Valuation Theory. In R. F. Paloutzian & C. L. Park (Eds.), Handbook of the psychology of religion and spirituality (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.

Koopmann-Holm, B., Sze, J., Ochs, C., & Tsai, J. L. (2013). Buddhist-inspired meditation increases the value of calm. Emotion, 13, 497-505.

Koopmann-Holm, B. & Matsumoto, D. (2011). Values and display rules for specific emotions. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 42, 355-371.

Matsumoto, D., Nezlek, J. B., & Koopmann, B. (2007). Evidence for universality in phenomenological emotion response system coherence. Emotion, 7, 57-67.

Amelang, M., Koopmann, B., & Schmidt-Rathjens, C. (2004). Gesundheitsbezogene Konstrukte [Health-related constructs]. In K. Pawlik (Ed.), Enzyklopädie der Psychologie, Themenbereich C: Theorie und Forschung, Serie VIII: Differentielle Psychologie und Persönlichkeitsforschung [Encyclopedia of Psychology, Subject Area C: Theory and Research, Series VIII: Differential Psychology and Research in Personality] (Vol. 5, pp. 619-684). Göttingen, Germany: Hogrefe.