I specialize at teaching courses that focus on psychological science, including research methods, and statistics. My teaching philosophy is based on creating a professional and structured classroom environment, engaging students in the course topics through active learning, and facilitating application and generalization of skills or knowledge outside of the classroom. Research has shown active learning to be quite effective across topics and disciplines, and active learning is especially central to instruction of research methods and statistics. I prefer to spend most of the classroom time solving problems together to lecturing.
While many students may use statistics outside of class very infrequently, I want all students to become better consumers of survey and other quantitative information and I use real world examples to help generalize classroom lessons to real-life problems. I try to foster intellectual curiosity, skepticism, and professionalism in my courses. Students may subscribe to conflicting theories or have different ideas, but discussions of those differences must always be professional, collaborative, and honest about the quality of evidence that supports them.
My research examines the cognitive and personality risk factors that contribute to onset and maintenance of substance use disorders. Some of my work has focused on the externalizing risk pathway described in part by the cognitive-motivational theory of personality vulnerability in addictive disorders, where cognitive abilities may exacerbate risk conferred by disinhibited personality characteristics. More recently, I started investigating the internalizing risk pathways. Some individuals may start using substances to cope with or ameliorate emotional symptoms, which may later develop into a maladaptive and harmful addiction. I also have a special interest in applying advanced statistical techniques to clinical research.
At Adler University, I have enjoyed using my research and quantitative skills to facilitate scientific inquiry by students and faculty. I am a member of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) committee, and I am looking forward to contributing to research and statistical consultation services at the University.