Photo of Professor Sue Trace Lawrence
Photo of Professor Sue Trace Lawrence

Susan Lawrence

Our research focuses on the effects of traumatic loss and grief during childhood. Emphasis is on understanding the long-range consequences of loss within a developmental context. We are using our findings to suggest more effective methods of supporting bereaved youth.

Sue Trace Lawrence is an Adjunct Professor of Psychology who began teaching at Ursinus in 2011. An alumna of Ursinus who graduated with a B.S. in psychology in 1983, she earned her M.Ed. and certification in School Counseling at West Chester University and her M.A. in educational psychology along with a graduate certificate in neuropsychology from Ball State University. While a student at Ursinus, she served as the teaching assistant for Experimental Psychology and earned Departmental Honors for her research on learned helplessness. In addition, her original sociology research was published in Pennsylvania Folklife.

In addition to teaching psychology at UC and other colleges, Sue has worked as a counselor and educational consultant, along with holding teaching and administrative positions in early childhood programs. She is a certified PQAS trainer for the state of Pennsylvania and provides professional development trainings for early childhood and school age staff, along with serving as a PD specialist for the CDA Council in Washington, D.C. Sue has written and self-published a book of poems and short-stories in collaboration with her late brother entitled Sob Stories, as well as a handbook for parents, Turning the Page: Helping a Child Cope with the Loss of a Sibling. She is completing a guidebook for educators who work with grieving children.

Currently, Sue has been conducting original research with UC students on the topics of childhood loss, grief, and trauma. The work has been incorporated into a nonprofit group, Traces of Love Association, which provides grief support services and education to local schools.




  • B.S., Ursinus College
  • M.Ed., West Chester University
  • M.A., Ball State University


Research Methods
Experimental Psychology
Organizational Psychology

Research Interests

Her current area of interest involves psychological issues in childhood, especially the topics of childhood traumatic grief and sibling loss.