Research training begins with the admission selection process. Selected students are matched with research mentors and students are expected to be actively involved in research activities beginning in Year 1. Students obtain supervised experience in aspects of the scientific process such as study design, survey construction, data collection, analysis, and interpretation. They are encouraged to present at local and national conferences and work on publications with their research mentors whenever possible.

Coursework in Research Methods

Students apply the fundamentals of research learned in a required sequence of courses:

  • Analysis of Variance - (1st year, Fall)
  • Regression/Correlational Design - (1st year, Spring)
  • Research Fundamentals - (1st year, Spring)
  • Empirically-Supported Therapies - (2nd year, Fall)

How long does it take to complete the program?

Students work with their research mentor(s) to develop a research plan for their first two years. This may include involvement in ongoing projects with the mentor and/or beginning to design original studies. During Year 1 planning also begins for students’ second year project or master’s thesis. To assist with this project, students are enrolled in Research Fundamentals in the spring of their first year to work on developing the proposal.
Students are required to complete a second year research project or a master's thesis under the supervision of their research mentor. The second year project or thesis must be submitted, defended, and approved by October 1 of Year 3. Exceptions to the second year project/thesis are made for students who are admitted into the program with a thesis that has been vetted by the Consortium faculty. However, research involvement with the research mentor is still expected of these students.
Students develop an area of focus for an empirical dissertation, a degree requirement, and are required to have an approved dissertation proposal by October 1 of Year 4. Students are also encouraged to continue their involvement in ongoing research projects with their research mentor and/or other Consortium faculty.
Although it is not required, students are urged to complete and defend their dissertations before leaving for internship at the end of academic Year 4.

Recent Dissertations

August 2017 - Haywood
Jacqueline Haywood

“Protective Factors against Peer and Social Media Sex Messages: The Moderating Role of Parental Influences on African American Emerging Adult Students’ Sexual Behaviors”

May 2017 - Bock
Sara Davis Bock

“Sense of Belonging, Emotional Regulation, Perceived Social Support and Mental Health among College Students”

December 2016 - Pitta and White
Amy Pitta

“Psychometric Functioning of the MMPI-A Restructured Form VRIN-R, TRIN-R, CRIN, and Cannot Say Scales with Varying Degrees of Randomness, Acquiescence, Counter-Acquiescence, and Omitted Items”

Any White

“Body Image and Quality of Life Among Postsurgical Bariatric Patients”

May 2016 - Chappell, Oettinger, Williams, Ward, Laaksonen, and Kurtz
Alexis Chappell

“Cognitive Performance Changes Associated with Right-Sided, Low-Frequency rTMS Administration in Patients with Treatment-Resistant Depression”

Emily Oettinger

“Executive Dysfunction as a Trait Marker of Depression in Children and Adolescents”

Takeshia Williams

“Life After an Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnosis: A Comparison of Stress and Coping Profiles of African American and Caucasian Caregivers”

Valerie Ward

“Does Trait Positive and Negative Affect, Predict Progress and Discharge Outcome in an Inpatient Medical Rehabilitation Population”

Michele Laaksonen

“The Relationship between Trauma-Related Shame, Disordered Behaviors, and Contextual Factors of Sexual Trauma Beyond Trait-Shame and Sex-Guilt”

Erin Doty Kurtz

“An Etiological Model of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Female OEF/OIF/OND Veterans: Adding Military Sexual Trauma as a Risk Factor”

August 2015 - Brokenbourgh, Hackett, Minifie, and Seagly
Megan A. Brokenbourgh

“Examining the Measurement Invariance of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2-Restructured Form (MMPI-2-RF) Internalizing Specific Problem Scales in African-American and Caucasian Outpatient Samples”

Lewis P. Hackett

“Donepezil’s Effect on Cardiac Function in Patients with Alzheimer’s Disease Through an In-Vivo, Non-Invasive Measure of Cardiac Autonomic Function”

Joseph Brooks Minifie

“Effects of Varying Degrees of Fixed and Random Responding on the Validity of Score Interpretation for SP and PSY-5 Scales of the MMPI-2-RF”

Katharine S. Seagly

“PTSD Symptom Severity and Neurocognitive Performance as a Function of Combined TMS and Imaginal Exposure in OIF/OEF Combat Veterans with Treatment Resistant PTSD”

May 2015 - Bonner
Carol Frances Bonner

“Moderating Effects of Coping Self-Efficacy and Coping Diversity in the Stress-Health Relationship in African-American College Students”

August 2014 - Iwai
Casey S. Iwai

“Interrelationships Between Psychopathy, Sensation Seeking, and Family Environment”

May 2014 - Bayan and Cray
Stacey M. Bayan

“Neurocognitive Changes Associated with 6 to 9 Weeks of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder”

Shannon Cray

“Sleep Disturbance, Neurodevelopmental Diagnoses, and Cognitive Inefficiency: An Explorative Study of Children Referred for Psychological/Neuropsychological Evaluations Compared to the PIC-2 Normative Sample”