Department of Education Sciences and Professional Programs

Brenda Light Bredemeier is a teacher and researcher with a strong interest in moral development and character education, and more recently, social justice in educational contexts.  She is especially interested in girls' and women's experiences in sports and educational settings.

 In 1979 she become an assistant professor of sport psychology at the University of California at Berkeley where she launched a research program focused on the moral and ethical dimensions of sport experience.  She published in research journals such as the Journal of Sport Psychology, the International Journal of Sport Psychology, and the Sociology of Sport Journal. Dr. Bredemeier  also served on the inaugural board for the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology (AAASP) and as an AAASP certified sport psychology consultant

In 1999, she accepted a position at the University of Notre Dame, becoming the co-founder and co-director of a new research and program development center, later named the Mendelson Center for Sports, Character & Community.  The mission of the center was to build character through sports by producing and delivering research-based educational programs and resources.  Dr. Bredemeier worked with an interdisciplinary team of academics and sport practitioners to create the communities of character approach to promoting moral and civic character.  Theoretically, this approach drew primarily from social constructivist approaches to moral development, the just community model of school-based moral education, the achievement motivation literature, and democratic leadership theory.

She joined the University of Missouri St. Louis College of Education faculty in 2003.  An affiliate of the Gender Studies Program, a member of the Center for Character and Citizenship Community of Scholars, and  a member of the Dean's Committee on Social Justice, she continues her work in the areas of moral and civic character and social justice.  Currently she is working on two projects. One involves studying how competition is perceived in sport and academic contexts. Her most recent book, co-authored with David Shields, explores the influence of metaphors on competitive experiences and offers strategies for maximizing  the potential of competition to foster excellence and enjoyment. The second project involves interviewing study participants to help educators better understand how they can support transgender students and colleagues.

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e-mail

bredemeierb@umsl.edu

phone

(314) 516-6820

office

312 Marillac Hall

Brenda Light Bredemeier earned a BS in physical education and a BA in psychology from the University of Minnesota, an MA in physical education from Smith College, and a Ph.D. with an emphasis in sport psychology from Temple University. She was certified as a sport psychology consultant in 1992, the first year certification was offered by the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology (AAASP).

Dr. Bredemeier was a founding board member of the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology (AAASP-AASP) and served on its board for four years as the Section Head of Social Psychology. She also served on the executive board of the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport. She was a member of the Indiana Partnership for Character Education, and has consulted for the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the Citizenship Through Sports Alliance.
 
For 20 years, Dr. Bredemeier was a professor at the University of California at Berkeley, where she also served the university for eleven years as a dean in the College of Letters and Science. In 1999 she was recruited by the University of Notre Dame, together with David Shields, to found and co-direct a new center for sports, character & community. The mission of the Mendelson Center was to build character through sport experiences by producing and delivering research-based educational programs and resources. The Center engaged in research and theory-building, academic and professional outreach programs, and service activities
 
Bredemeier moved to UMSL in 2004, the same year she was name the McCloy Lecturer by the American Alliance of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (AAHPERD). She was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education, and by the Research Consortium of AAHPERD, and by AAASP, and was named a Sports Ethics Fellow by the Institute for International Sport. She received the "Distinguished Achievement Award" from the National Association for Sport and Physical Education, and was named "Outstanding Alumni" by Temple University's College of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance for highest achievement of an alum in 20 years.

 She has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and has co-authored two books with David Light Shields, Character Development and Physical Activity, and True Competition: A Guide to Ethics, Excellence, and Enjoyment. Also, she has conducted numerous workshops nationally and internationally, and offered major papers and addresses at a variety of conferences on this country and others.
           
Currently Dr. Bredemeier is on the editorial board of the International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. She serves on the "Panel of Experts" for the Center for Sports Parenting, and serves on the national advisory board of the Positive Coaching Alliance.
In 2004, she joined an innovative academic community at the University of Missouri-St. Louis to help develop and share knowledge and skills in the areas of character education, civic engagement, and social justice.

Teaching and Research Interest Areas

  • Civic Engagement and Service Learning
  • Competition and Cooperation
  • Moral Development and Character Education
  • Social Justice and Caring Communities
  • Sport Psychology

Representative Publications

  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (2008). Sport and the development of the moral self. In D. Hackfort, J. Duda, & R. Lidor (Eds.), Handbook of research in applied sport and exercise psychology. Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology.
  • Shields, D. & Bredemeier, B (2008). Can sports build character? In D. Lapsley & F.C. Power (Eds.), Character psychology and education. University of Notre Dame Press.
  • Bredemeier, B. (2003). Moral community and youth sport in the new millennium. In R. Malina & M. Clark (Eds.), Youth sports: Perspectives for a new century . Monterey: Coaches Choice.
  • Bredemeier, B. (2002). Courts of justice, fields of dreams. International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education Bulletin, 34 , 16-19 .
  • Shields, D., Bredemeier, B., & Power, F.C. (2002). Character development and children's sport. In F. Smoll & R. Smith (Eds.), Children and youth in sport: A biopsychosocial perspective, 2 nd ed. (pp. 537-559). Indianapolis: Brown & Benchmark.
  • Bredemeier, B. (2001). Feminist praxis in sport psychology research. The Sport Psychologist, 15(4):412-418.
  • Power, C., Power, A., Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (2001). Democratic education and children's rights. In S. Hart, C Cohen, M. Erickson, & M Flekkoy (Eds.), Children's rights in education (pp. 98-118). London: Jessica Kingsley.
  • Shields, D., & Bredemeier, B. (2001). Moral development and behavior in sport. In R. Singer, H. Hausenblas, & C. Janelle (Eds.), Handbook of sport psychology (2 nd Ed.) (pp. 585-603). New York: John Wiley.
  • Fisher, L., & Bredemeier, B. (2000). Caring about injustice: The moral self-perceptions of professional female bodybuilders. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 22 , 327-344.
  • Bredemeier, B., Carlton, E., Hills, L., & Oglesby, C. (1999). Changers and the changed: Moral aspects of coming out in physical education. Quest: The Journal of the National Association for Physical Education in Higher Education, 51, 418-431.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1998). Moral development and sport: Considerations for girls and women. In C. Oglesby et al (Eds.), Encyclopedia of women and sport in America. Phoenix: The Olyx.
  • Bredemeier, & Shields, D. (1998). Assessing moral constructs in physical activity settings. In J. Duda (Ed.), Advances in sport and exercise psychology measurement (pp. 257-276). New York: Fitness Information Technology, Inc.
  • Solomon, G., & Bredemeier, B. (1997). Children's moral reasoning and legitimacy judgments about gender stratification in sport contexts. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 28 , 111-121.
  • Miller, S., Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1997). Sociomoral education through physical education with at-risk children. Quest: The Journal of the National Association for Physical Education in Higher Education, 49, 114-129.
  • Stephens, D., & Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1997). Construction of a measure designed to assess girls' descriptions and prescriptions for moral behavior in youth sport soccer. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 28, 370-390.
  • Shields, D., Gardner, D., Bredemeier, B., & Bostrom, A. (1997). The relationship between leadership behaviors and group cohesion in team sports. The Journal of Sport Psychology, 131, 196-210.
  • Gardner, D., Shields, D., Bredemeier, B., & Bostrom, A. (1996). The relationship between perceived coaching behaviors and team cohesion among baseball and softball players. The Sport Psychologist, 10 , 367-381.
  • Shields, D., & Bredemeier, B. (1996). Sport, militarism, and peace. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 2 , 369-383.
  • Stephens, D., & Bredemeier, B. (1996). Moral atmosphere and judgments about aggression in girls' soccer: Relationships among moral and motivational variables. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 18 , 158-173.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1995). Divergence in children's moral reasoning about issues in daily life and sport specific contexts. The International Journal of Sport Psychology, 26 , 453-463.
  • Shields, D., & Bredemeier, B. (1995). Character development and physical activity.   Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1995). Moral development and children's sport. In F. Smoll & R. Smith (Eds.), Children and youth in sport: A biopsychosocial perspective (pp. 381-401). Indianapolis: Brown & Benchmark.
  • Shields, D., Bredemeier, B., Gardner, D., & Bostrom, A. (1995). Leadership, cohesion, and team norms regarding cheating and aggression. Sociology of Sport Journal, 12 , 324-336.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1994). Children's moral reasoning and their assertive, aggressive, and submissive tendencies in sport and daily life . Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 16 , 1-14.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1994). Applied ethics and moral reasoning in sport. In J. Rest (Ed.), Moral development in the professions: Psychology and applied ethics (pp. 173-187). Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1993). Moral psychology in the context of sport. In R. Singer, M. Murphy, and L. Tennant (Eds.), Handbook of research in sport psychology (pp. 587-599). New York: Macmillan.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1992). "And ain't I a woman?" Toward a multicultural approach to gender and morality. Quest: The Journal of the National Association for Physical Education in Higher Education, 44, 179-209.
  • Bredemeier, B., Desertrain, G., Fisher, L., Getty, D., Slocum, N., Stephens, D., & Warren, J. (1991). Epistemological perspectives among women who participate in physical activity. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 3 , 87-107.
  • Weiss, M., & Bredemeier, B. (1990). Moral development in sport. Exercise and Sport Science Reviews, 18, 331-378.
  • Shields, D., & Bredemeier, B. (1989). Moral reasoning, judgment and action in a sport context. In J. Goldstein (Eds.) Sports, Games and play: Social and psychological viewpoints, 2nd Edition (pp. 59-81), Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1987). Moral growth through physical activity: A structural developmental approach. In D. Gould & M. Weiss (Eds.), Advances in pediatric sport sciences (pp. 143-165). Champaign, Ill.: Human Kinetics.
  • Bredemeier, B., Weiss, M., Shields, D., & Cooper, B. (1987). The relationship between children's legitimacy judgments and their moral reasoning, aggression tendencies and sport involvement. Sociology of Sport Journal, 4 , 48-60.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1986). Athletic aggression: An issue of contextual morality. Sociology of Sport Journal, 3, 15-28.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1986). Morality and aggression: A response to Smith's critique. Sociology of Sport Journal, 3, 65-67.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1986). Game reasoning and interactional morality. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 147, 257-275.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1986). Moral growth among athletes and non-athletes: A comparative analysis. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 147 , 7-18.
  • Bredemeier, B., Weiss, M., Shields, D., & Cooper, B. (1986). The relationship of sport involvement with children's moral reasoning and aggression tendencies. Journal of Sport Psychology, 8, 304-318.
  • Bredemeier, B., Weiss, M., Shields, D., & Shewchuk, R. (1986). Promoting moral growth in a summer sport camp: The implementation of theoretically grounded instructional strategies. Journal of Moral Education, 15, 212-220.
  • Weiss, M., & Bredemeier, B. (1986). Moral development. In V. Seefeldt (Ed.), Physical activity and human well-being (pp. 373-390). Champaign, Ill.: Human Kinetics.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1985). Moral reasoning and the perceived legitimacy of intentionally injurious sport acts. Journal of Sport Psychology, 7, 110-124.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1985). Values and violence in sport. Psychology Today, 19, 22-32.
  • Weiss, M., Bredemeier, B., & Shewchuk, R. (1985). An intrinsic/extrinsic motivation scale for the youth sport setting: A confirmatory factor analysis. Journal of Sport Psychology, 7, 75-91.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1984). Sport, gender and moral growth. In J. Silva & R. Weinberg (Eds.), Psychological foundations of sport (pp. 400-414). Champaign, Ill.: Human Kinetics.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1984). Divergence in moral reasoning about sport and everyday life. Sociology of Sport Journal, 1 , 348-357.
  • Bredemeier, B., & Shields, D. (1984). The utility of moral stage analysis in the investigation of athletic aggression. Sociology of Sport Journal, 1, 138-149.
  • Duquin, M., Bredemeier, B., Oglesby, C., & Greendorfer, S. (1984). Teacher values: Political and social justice orientations of physical educators. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 3, 9-19.
  • Shields, D., & Bredemeier, B. (1984). Sport and moral growth: A structural and developmental perspective. In W. Straub and J. Williams (Eds.), Cognitive sport psychology (pp. 89-101). Lansing, New York: Sport Science Associates.
  • Bredemeier, B. (1983). Athletic aggression: A moral concern. In J. Goldstein (Ed.), Sports violence (pp. 46-81). New York: Springer-Verlag.
  • Weiss, M., & Bredemeier, B. (1983). Developmental sport psychology: A theoretical perspective for studying children in sport. Journal of Sport Psychology, 5, 216-230.