Caitlyn Hauff, Ph.D.

Caitlyn Hauff, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Health, Kinesiology and Sport
Kinesiology and Health Promotion


B.S., Psychology, Baldwin Wallace University, 2011
M.S., Kinesiology-Sport and Exercise Psychology, Georgia Southern University, 2013
Ph.D., Kinesiology - Weight Studies and Health Behavior Change, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Teaching Philosophy

I am invested in creating a dynamic learning environment for students that encourages them to learn to appreciate diversity, celebrate differences, and view society with a lens that embraces acceptance and encourages tolerance. Academia is a place where students should have their thinking challenged and recognize the need to view elements in their environment from different lenses to better understand the multidimensional nature of our society. In conjunction with being an active leader, my teaching philosophy and teaching strategies aim to engage students in a way that makes them active learners in the classroom. They are challenged to transform their thinking, find their passions, exceed their expectations and achieve their full potential. I aspire to influence my students to be advocates for a cause and take basic concepts and theories beyond the classroom and into the world where they can make a difference. From the classroom, to the tennis court, to an online discussion forum, regardless of what capacity I am teaching in, my goal is to inspire my students, incite passion, and foster motivation to reach their full potential, by creating a fun, interesting, and motivating learning environment.


My research focuses on the psychosocial aspects of weight, health, and physical activity. Much of my work revolves around trying to better understand how women view their bodies in different physical activity contexts, how weight bias plays a role in how physically active individuals are, and how social media impacts exercise and health behaviors. I also have interests in disordered eating and eating disorders, social comparison in exercise settings, body image in exercise settings, and exercise apparel. I am extremely passionate about finding ways for individuals to embrace and accept bodies of all shapes, sizes, and colors, and my research agenda very much reflects this.

Currently at the University of South Alabama, she is involved in several multidisciplinary research projects including examining health behaviors in nursing students, assessing weight bias in nurse practitioner students, determining how individuals interpret feedback regarding body fat percentage using a DXA and Fit 3D body scanner, and creating interventions to assist NCAA student-athletes during their academic careers.


Dr. Hauff is a member of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP), APA Division-47 (Exercise and Sport Psychology Division), and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). Within AASP, she serves on the Web Presence Committee and is a Co-Coordinator of the Eating Disorder Special Interest Group. Dr. Hauff is also the current co-editor of the Journal of Sport Behavior and an Associate Editor for Performance Enhancement & Health. At South, Dr. Hauff is heavily involved with JagFIT, which is the university's employee health and wellness initiative.


Dr. Hauff received her B.S. from Baldwin Wallace University in 2011. During her time at BW, she played collegiate tennis, helping her team to three NCAA Division III National Championship appearances. She still plays tennis competitively and has spent most of her life teaching tennis to individuals of all ages. After completing her degree at BW, she moved to Statesboro, GA and completed her M.S. in Kinesiology with a focus in Sport and Exercise Psychology at Georgia Southern University in 2013. She then moved to Milwaukee, WI and completed her Ph.D. in Kinesiology with a focus in psychosocial aspects of weight and physical activity, at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2016. At UWM, she served as a researcher in the Body Weight and Shape Research Lab. Dr. Hauff is extremely passionate about promoting positive body image and body acceptance, and much of her work in and outside of academia reflects this.

Dr. Hauff was born and raised in Columbus, OH (GO BUCKEYES). She is married to Nate Hauff, and together, they are avid Ohio sports fans (yes, even the Cleveland Browns), enjoy spending time outside and at the beach, and love to travel. Dr. Hauff spends the majority of her time caring for her fur-child, Tomo, who is a spunky, brindled diva dog and her daughter, Hazel, who was born during the craziness of 2020. You can look forward to hearing all about Tomo and Hazel if you take one of Dr. Hauff's courses



KIN 278 - Sport and Human Behavior
KIN 565 - Community Health
KIN 584 - Directed Study
HS 362 - Drug Education
HS 462 - Public Health
HS 510 - Current Health Issues