Applied Experimental Psychology
Preparation for a career
in behavioral research.
Applied Experimental Psychology
The Applied Experimental Psychology Program at the University of North Texas provides training for students interested in careers in behavioral research and teaching. Most students who are admitted aspire to a position in academics; however, opportunities for employment in private industry or research institutes also exist. The program offers students training in both basic and applied research. Focus is on high quality training with intensive student-faculty involvement in joint research. Students are expected to participate actively in research with faculty members throughout their tenure in the program. This emphasis on one-to-one training allows students to acquire research skills while working on projects leading to publication or grant application. Each student will eventually develop advanced knowledge and research expertise in one or more specialty area(s).
Key research topics: traumatology, cardiovascular functioning and stress, structural equation modeling, psychopathy, personality disorders, cognitive psychology, social psychology, health psychology, personality, adult development and aging, health disparities, cognition, affect, psychometrics, applied statistics, physiological psychology
Dr. Heidemarie Blumenthal's research includes etiology of anxiety and problematic substance use; co-occurring anxiety and alcohol use among adolescents; developmental psychopathology; how significant facets of adolescence (e.g., puberty) relate to the onset/maintenance of anxiety psychopathology and drinking behaviors; and advancing methodological rigor via a convergence of techniques (e.g., experimental psychopathology, multi-modal assessment).
Dr. Adriel Boals' primary research interest is coping with stress and trauma, with an emphasis on autobiographical memory. This topic includes 1) understanding the etiology of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Posttraumatic Growth (PTG), with an emphasis on cognitive and autobiographical memory processes 2) understanding the expressive writing intervention as a coping process, and 3) how we can gain insight into healthy coping strategies through narrative analyses. He endeavors to achieve a comprehensive view of coping with stress, which requires an integration of research from a variety of subdisciplines within psychology, including experimental, social, cognitive, clinical, and health psychology.
Dr. Thomas Parsons’s program of research lies at the intersection between experimental and clinical neuropsychology. His Clinical Neuropsychology and Simulation (CNS) lab aims to specify and understand the neurobiological bases of individual and social cognition. To achieve these goals, Dr. Parsons combines novel technologies (human-computer interfaces, virtual/augmented environments, video games); neurocognitive assessments (Stroop, Go/No-go, Anti-Saccade, D-KEFS, EEG, neuroimaging); autonomic measures (ECG, EDA); game theoretical paradigms adopted from neuroeconomics; and novel data analytics (artificial neural networks; meta-analyses) for assessment and training of the supervisory attentional system’s adaptive responding.
Dr. Camilo Ruggero's research explores the role of cognitive variables in bipolar disorder and depression, seeking to understand the role of attention, memory, and other cognitive variables in mood disorders. He is also focused on understanding the phenomenological boundaries of the bipolar spectrum and testing whether different forms of the disorder are associated with different risk factors. Dr. Ruggero also studies cross-cultural differences in mood disorder symptom expression.
Dr. John Ruiz's program of research is broadly focused on how our social lives influence our health, for better and worse. I am particularly interested in the relationship between personaity, relationships, and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk and the biobehavioral mechanisms undelying these relationship. I am also studying racial/ethnic health disparities, particularly the epidemiological phenomenon referred to as the Hispanic Mortality Paradox.
Dr. Rex Wright conducts research on the determinants and cardiovascular consequences of effort. This is important as it relates to an individual's risk for negative health outcomes such as hypertension and heart disease. How do such factors as the perception of one's ability or self-efficacy impact effort and associated cardiovascular responses. His recent work has looked at fatigue-cognitive decline influences on ability perception, sleep loss and obesity as influences on fatigue, and self-regulatory (e.g. inhibition) training's impact of persons' ability to self regulate.
Philosophy and Objectives:
The applied experimental psychology program at the University of North Texas immerses students in scientific inquiry to prepare them for prominent roles as researchers and teachers in universities and as research consultants in business and industry, counseling centers, hospitals, mental health centers, medical schools and rehabilitation services. Students participate in investigation from the beginning of their training in the university's laboratories and interdisciplinary research centers.
Opportunities for Graduate Students:
The applied experimental psychology program provides specialized training in human research while remaining flexible to accommodate individual interests. All students are expected to acquire expertise in research methodology and statistical analysis and for this reason, all students must meet in addition to a departmental core requirement, an Applied Experimental Psychology core course requirement. Students select a major area of research, consistent with opportunities to work with program faculty, as well as a minor area of interest to complement their major area of emphasis. For example, students may focus on aspects of cognitive neuroscience, which would include research into aspects of memory and cognition; stress and its physiological consequences; or the link between brain activity and behaviors. The program offers many teaching opportunities and support for professional development, and it maximizes training for research. Please see our Program Manual for additional information.
The deadline for applications is December 1st.
Experimental Psychology News
February 22, 2013
November 15, 2012
November 15, 2012
November 9, 2012
October 9, 2012