Professor of Psychology
Professor of Law
Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles, 1993
J.D., New York University School of Law, 1982
B.A., Wesleyan University, 1979
Barbara Spellman joined the UVA faculty in the psychology department in 1997 and became half-time in the law school in 2008. She teaches evidence and various courses on the intersection of psychology and law (e.g., Empirical Methods in Law, Psychology of the Deciders).
Spellman received her law degree from NYU in 1982. In the mid-1980’s she practiced tax law at Chadbourne & Parke in New York City and worked as a writer/editor at Matthew Bender Company. Spellman then studied cognitive psychology at UCLA. Her research focused mostly on memory, analogical reasoning and causal reasoning. Her dissertation was entitled The Construction of Causal Explanations.
Spellman has published in both psychology journals and law reviews. She has edited a special issue of Psychonomic Bulletin & Review (2010) on emerging trends in psychology and law research. She is currently editor-in-chief of Perspectives on Psychological Science.