Dr. Linda Nielsen


Office: Tribble A308A
Email: nielsen@wfu.edu
Phone: 336-758-5345
website: go.wfu.edu/nielsen

Dr. Linda Nielsen is Professor of Adolescent & Educational Psychology at Wake Forest University. Her research and courses are focused on shared physical custody for children with separated parents and father-daughter relationships, with a special emphasis on divorced fathers. In addition to her many academic articles, she has written three books on father-daughter relationships and a college textbook, Adolescence: A Contemporary View.  She is often invited to present her research on child custody to family court and mental health professionals and to legislative policy makers in the U.S. and abroad. Her work has been featured in a PBS documentary, on National Public Radio, and in magazines and newspapers including Time, Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. She was guest editor in 2018 of the special issue of the Journal of Divorce & Remarriage on shared parenting and is presently finishing the second edition of her college textbook, Father and Daughters: Contemporary Research & Issues.

Academic Appointments

Professor, Educational Psychology


Ed.D., University of Tennesee, Knoxville, 1976
M.Ed., University of Tennessee, 1973
B.A., University of Tennessee, 1969

Past Professional Experiences

High School English Teacher, Knoxville, TN, 1970-73
Instructor, University of Tennessee, Dept. of Educational Psychology & Counseling, 1973-74
Professor, Wake Forest University, 1976-present
Expert witness on research in child custody cases in six states

Fathers and Daughters: Contemporary research & issues
First Year Seminar: Children of Divorce
Child Custody: Research and Issues

Father-Daughter Relationships: Contemporary Research & Issues. (2019, 2nd edition). Routledge.

Between Fathers & Daughters: Enriching or Rebuilding Your Adult Relationship. (2008). Cumberland House. 

Embracing Your Father: Building the Relationship You Always Wanted with Your Dad. (2004). McGraw Hill.

Adolescence: A Contemporary View (3 editions, college textbook, 1987-1996). Harcourt Brace.

How to Motivate Adolescents: A Guide for Parents, Counselors and Teachers. (1983). Prentice Hall. 

“Analysis of research on shared vs. sole physical custody: Outcomes for children. Independent of income & conflict” (2018) Boston: International Conference on Shared Parenting.

“Shared physical custody: Research & policy implications (2012)  Chicago: Association of Family & Conciliatory Courts National Conference.

Shared Physical custody: Summary of 55 studies. (2014) New Orleans: Louisiana Bar Association: Family Law Conference.                           

Shared Custody: Research for judges (2014) Charlotte: North Carolina Family Court Judges Conference.

Shared versus sole physical custody: Outcomes for children (2014) Charleston, SC:  South Carolina Bar Association Annual Conference.

3 hour seminars for judges, lawyers & mental health professionals involved in child custody decisions