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Convention 2019

Shireen Rizvi, PhD., ABPP, directs the Dialectical Behavior Therapy Clinic at Rutgers University in the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology, Rutgers University

Shireen L. Rizvi is Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology at the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology at Rutgers University where she also holds affiliate appointments in the psychology department and the Department of Psychiatry. She completed her internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Boston/National Center for PTSD. Her research interests include improving outcomes, training, and dissemination of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) for the treatment of complex and severe populations.

Dr. Rizvi has received funding from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) for her research. Her work has resulted in over 60 peer-reviewed articles and chapters. Dr. Rizvi is board-certified in Behavioral and Cognitive Psychology and in Dialectical Behavior Therapy. She is President of the Board of ISITDBT and was its conference program chair for two years. She has trained hundreds of practitioners in DBT from around the world. Dr. Rizvi received the Spotlight on a Mentor Award from the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies in 2017.

The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Clinic at Rutgers University (DBT-RU) is a research and training clinic that provides comprehensive DBT services to individuals in the community. We have been in operation since 2010. We conduct research on DBT outcomes and processes as well as use experimental paradigms to study relevant processes in the lab.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?

We have a weekly journal club in which students rotate taking the lead and choosing an article to present. This allows us to read recent articles that align with the research interests of the group. In addition, I rely heavily on journal alerts that let me know when a new issue is available (with titles and abstracts) as well as google scholar alerts on topics of relevance.

What conferences do you regularly attend and why?

ABCT is the only conference that I attend every year without fail. Finding the time during the semester system to regularly attend other conferences is difficult. That said, when possible, I have attended the European Society for the Study of Personality Disorders (ESSPD) biannual conference on borderline personality disorder; International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS), and the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA).

How long have you been a member of ABCT?

Nearly 20 Years!

How has ABCT helped you professionally?

Since I joined, ABCT has been my "professional home." It has opened a number of opportunities for me. I learn a lot from the other members and look forward to seeing everyone every year. I have served on a number of committees and was recently elected by the membership to serve as Rep-at-Large. I've gained a lot from ABCT and hope to give back as much as possible.

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students? As the field changes and grows, so will ABCT. As long as ABCT stays true to its mission, there will always be a place there for me and my students.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them?

I encourage all of my students (as well as students in the entire program) to join ABCT in their first year. Once they attend their first meeting, they are "hooked."

For prospective students: (Who should consider applying to your lab, and how can they find out more?)

I mentor students in both of Rutgers' clinical doctoral programs. Typically, I have one or two students from the PsyD program begin working with me in their first year. Every three years or so, I also accept a student from the PhD program. Interested PhD candidates should check the website to see if I plan to take students for the upcoming year. Candidates who are interested in a career in DBT and BPD research and like complex and challenging problems are a good fit for the lab.

We asked questions of DBT-RU's students:

   1) What is your area of research interest?

   2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

   3) If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Katherine Bailey

My research interests include BPD, DBT, non-suicidal self-injury, emotion regulation, suicidal behaviors, trauma, and international mental health.

ABCT has helped me gain exposure to a broad range of research findings related to the scientific understanding and treatment of psychological difficulties. In addition, I have had the opportunity to showcase original research, learn more about evidence-based clinical practice, and further develop my own clinical skills.

I recommend that students attend the annual conference, participate in a special interest group, and submit an abstract to share knowledge with peers and senior researchers.

An Nguyen

My research interests include Borderline Personality Disorder, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, suicidal and self-injurious behaviors, emotion dysregulation, validation, family involvement, and caregiver burden.

ABCT has exposed me to research outside my personal interests, expanded my range of clinical interventions, and allowed me to speak with important researchers in the field.

Definitely attend the annual conference and submit a poster!

Alexandra King

My research interests include BPD, emotion dysregulation more broadly, DBT, family interventions, behavioral healthcare, and treatment dissemination.

ABCT has shown me the kinds of related research others are conducting, which has introduced me to different treatments, study settings, and methodologies. This exchange of ideas has been helpful for meeting and working with other researchers, and also inspiring future directions of my own research.

I would suggest joining the list serve, which will connect you to article alerts, clinical and research discussions, and job postings. I would also recommend attending the conference to hear first-hand what projects other researchers are working on.

Molly St. Denis

I am primarily interested in the effectiveness of third wave, mindfulness-based treatments for individuals with mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and/or intense emotion dysregulation.

ABCT has been wonderful in helping me expand my knowledge of current research and evidence-based treatment approaches. I always feel reinvigorated to pursue my clinical and research interests after attending the annual conference. I can also see that it will be an essential platform for networking and professional development throughout my career.

I would highly recommend signing up for the list serve, submitting your work as a poster, and attending the annual convention (duh!). I would also recommend taking advantage of the many ABCT offerings, including networking opportunities in your area.

Chris Hughes

My research interests include BPD, DBT, suicidal and self-injurious behaviors, emotion regulation, rumination/repetitive negative thinking, experiential avoidance, affective forecasting biases, treatment and assessment development, modification, and evaluation, and the incorporation of mobile technology into treatment and research.

ABCT has given me opportunities to learn about research outside my area, present my work to other psychologists/researchers, and meet, connect, and interact with other researchers with similar interests to mine.

I would recommend attending the annual conference, submitting your work as a poster or symposium, and attending special interest groups, symposia/talks, and poster sessions relevant to your research.

Skye Fitzpatrick, PhD

I have two primary areas of interest: First, I am interested in translational science and basic emotion science-informed experimental methods to understand the nature of, and refine relevant treatments for, borderline personality disorder (BPD). Second, I am interested in identifying ways to optimize the efficiency and effectiveness of dialectical behavior therapy and the comorbid treatment of BPD and posttraumatic stress disorder.

ABCT has been my "home organization" since my first year of graduate school. My annual involvement in ABCT meetings, symposia, and meet and greets has helped me to connect to a network of innovative BPD researchers who are now among my most central mentors, collaborators, and colleagues.

I would recommend that students get involved in special interest groups that are relevant to their areas of research. I think that these kinds of groups are what help emerging researchers to integrate into their academic fields.

Top Row Standing L-R: Eitan Schur, Alex King, Michael Marks, Melissa Kearney, Kate Bailey, Liza Pincus, Maria Alba, Jessica Weatherford, Christine Cho, Skye Fitzpatrick, Chris Hughes

Sitting L-R: Denise Guarino, Molly St. Denis, Shireen Rizvi, April Yeager, An Nyugen


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Robert D. Friedberg, Ph.D., ABPP, directs the Center for the Study and Treatment of Anxious Youth at Palo Alto University

Robert D. Friedberg is Head of the Child Emphasis Area at Palo Alto University. He is a Board-Certified Diplomate (ABPP) in CBT and a Founding Fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. Additionally, Dr. Friedberg is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Clinical Child Psychology) and the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy. He has received teaching awards from Wright State University, Penn State University Milton Hershey Center, and the Spotlight on Mentor award from ABCT. He is the co-author of eight books, including Clinical Practice of Cognitive Therapy with Children and Adolescents, as well as chapters, journal articles, and conference presentations.

The Center for the Study and Treatment of Anxious Youth (CSTAY) is a research lab emphasizing a cognitive behavioral approach to childhood anxiety disorders, dissemination and training in CBT, school-based services, mental health literacy, integrated behavioral healthcare for children and adolescents, behavioral healthcare policy, and administration. The research group emphasizes Accountability, Affordability, and Accessibility in Pediatric Behavioral Health Care. Under the broad domain of accountability, CSTAY studies genuine evidence-based interventions and clinical training in anxiety disorders and other psychiatric conditions in youth. Measurement-based care is emphasized. Cost-effective, cost-offset, and physician-leveraging in pediatric behavioral health care delivery initiatives represent the affordability dimension. Increasing mental health literacy, dissemination of authentic evidence-based practices to professionals (Business to Business Marketing principles), direct-to-consumer marketing of EBPS to patients, and innovative service delivery designs (integrated pediatric behavioral health care; school-based prevention projects, etc) reflect our interests in accessibility.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice? I utilize both traditional (journals, texts, conferences) and non-traditional (blogs, podcasts, twitter, you tube, etc.) informational platforms.

What conferences do you regularly attend and why? The annual ABCT is my "go to" conference because I consider it my professional home and the conference consistently offers sessions that translate state-of-the-science findings into interventions that help young patients and their families. I also attend the American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers due to their educational offerings and opportunities for collaboration.

How long have you been a member of ABCT? I have been a member for approximately 30 years.

How has ABCT helped you professionally? ABCT has helped me in multitudinous ways. First, I have learned tons from going to conferences, reading the Behavior Therapist, Behavior Therapy and Cognitive and Behavioral Practice as well as through informal conversations with colleagues. Additionally, I find the annual conference warm and welcoming which facilitates important professional networking.

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students? ABCT's role will become even more critical due to the evolving behavioral healthcare marketplace. Value will be rewarded more than volume and ABCT's focus on evidence based procedures and clinical accountability will be pivotal. Finally, ABCT should play a large role in the emerging area of integrated behavioral healthcare in both primary care and specialty care medical clinics.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them? ABCT membership is STRONGLY recommended for the students in the Lab. As the students indicate below, the educational and professional networking opportunities offered by ABCT has been extremely influential for them.

For prospective students: Palo Alto University has a somewhat different application process to the Ph.D. program. Prospective students apply to the graduate program first and then in the middle of the first year apply to research groups: pediatric anxiety disorders, CBT for pediatric behavioral health disorders, integrated pediatric behavioral healthcare, dissemination and implementation of CBT, and behavioral healthcare policy and administration.

More information can be found on our website

Pictured: Front Row (L-R) Bob Friedberg, Hannah Toyama, Jeremy Joves, Anika Mehta, Courtney Giannini

Back Row (L-R) Sandra Trafalis, Krista Basile, Samantha Honnert

We asked questions of CSTAY's students:

   What is your area of research interest?

   How has ABCT been helpful to you?

   If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Cameron Mosley, M.S.

I study childhood anxiety, economic principles applied to psychotherapy, psychology's place in integrated health care, and burnout in health care professionals.

ABCT has been helpful for networking with internship sites and learning from the current best and brightest researchers in the field of clinical psychology. I also enjoy reading the Behavior Therapist to keep current on psychological science.

Students should definitely follow the ABCT listserv and submit an abstract for the annual conference.

Erica V. Rozbruch, M.S.

I focus on improving mental health literacy among children and their families as well as implementing and disseminating EBPs in community mental health settings.

Attending symposiums at ABCT allowed me to listen to the best researchers in the world challenge one another and have critical discussions about our field. I also attended the internship meet and greet which helped me network with internship sites and directors. Most importantly, I connected with a network of professionals who are passionate about improving the quality of life for individuals through CBT treatment and research.

I recommend students sign up for the ABCT list serve to learn more about available RA/job positions as well as follow conversations about where our field is heading. Students would greatly benefit from attending the ABCT annual conference to remain knowledgeable about current research and connect with like-minded professionals.

Andrea Wister, M.S.

I examine training in evidence-based treatments for youth, as well as mental health literacy and societal perceptions and attitudes towards psychology and mental health treatment for youth.

ABCT provides easy access to cutting-edge research. As a student, the journals and webinars are excellent ways to learn outside the classroom.

For students looking to get involved, I recommend they present a poster at the conference and use the chance to network and learn from the best of the best. If you can't go, check out the webinars series (they keep the recordings online if you can't attend live!).

Rebecca LaPrade, M.S

I look to understand clinicians' attitudes toward exposure therapy with youth, including therapist factors and supervision experience.

ABCT has been important in broadening my understanding of cutting-edge interventions for youth as well as providing the opportunity to network for professional development.

I would recommend presenting a poster and attending a SIG related to your clinical or research interests. I've also found the workshops offered to be helpful in developing new skills.

Nicole Wilberding, M.S.

I am studying attitudes of pediatric medical students towards mental health providers and patients with psychological disorders and how they inform their referral behavior.

Being a student member of ABCT has helped me to stay apprised of important research in the field and provided opportunities to contribute to the field by working on posters that were presented at the annual convention.

I would recommend presenting a poster at the annual convention and attending networking events.

Krista Basile , M.H.S

I work with anxious children and their caregivers to reduce impairment and family accommodation

ABCT has been helpful to me by disseminating information via their website, journals, and at conventions about providing evidence based care to patients.

I would recommend that students consider attending an ABCT convention, since it is an excellent opportunity to professionally network and gain knowledge of behavioral and cognitive approaches across various settings.

Anaid Atasuntseva, M.S.

I look at treatment of anxiety in youth, as well as how marketing research can help facilitate dissemination of evidence-based treatments, particularly with underserved populations.

ABCT has been essential in helping me build my career. Attending conferences has allowed me to make professional connections with amazing researchers and keep up to date with the latest findings.

My advice to new students joining ABCT is to get involved in as many activities as possible. I would highly recommend attending conferences and joining special interest groups. Reading the ABCT list serve is a daily must for me, as it helps me stay connected with issues in the field.

Szimi Mulati, M.S.

I am investigating existing measures and treatments for anxiety and depression for children and adolescents, examining dissemination of evidence-based treatments within the principles of recent health care reforms and increasing mental health literacy in the community.

ABCT has allowed me to share my research in a professional setting and establish connections with other students and psychologists. ABCT also provides great resources for staying current on research findings in the field of psychology.

I would highly recommend students attend the annual ABCT convention and view presentations of interest. It is a great opportunity to establish professional connections with other researchers and to stay informed regarding ongoing research.

Jeremy Joves, B.A.

I explore the development of mood disorders in adolescence and increasing the quality of care in integrated pediatric behavioral health settings.

ABCT has provided me with amazing resources for increasing my knowledge of research and treatment, as well as network connections which are beneficial to my field of study.

Attending the conference and participating in Special Interest Groups in order to connect with others in the field.

Hannah Toyama, B.A.

I study mood disorders in children and adolescents and psychosocial adjustment in children with chronic illness, specifically cancer.

ABCT has been helpful for me to network with other researchers and learn about research that will be relevant in my future practices.

I would recommend getting involved in presenting a poster, attending symposium talks, and networking to expand your brand in the field.


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Evan Forman, PhD, directs the Center for Weight, Eating and Lifestyle Science (WELL Center) at Drexel University's Department of Psychology

Dr. Forman is a Professor of Psychology and is the founding Director of the Center for Weight, Eating and Lifestyle Science (WELL Center) at Drexel University. Within the WELL Center, he oversees tenure track and research faculty, staff, and postdoctoral fellows, as well as undergraduate, Masters students, and Ph.D. students. Dr. Forman has a smaller "sub-lab" that focuses on designing, refining, implementing, and evaluating innovative behavioral and technology-based treatments for obesity and related eating problems. Dr. Forman has authored approximately 150 manuscripts, and is the author of the Effective Weight Loss books (Clinician Guide and Client Workbook) for Oxford Press's Treatments that Work series. In addition, his research has been continuously supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for over 10 years. Some of his larger funded projects include Mind Your Health, which is evaluating a novel acceptance-based behavioral treatment (ABT) for obesity; Project Dash, which is evaluating the effect of gamification and of computerized neurocognitive training aimed at helping individuals stay adherent to a healthy diet; OnTrack, a smart phone-based Just-in-Time Adaptive Intervention (JITAI) that uses machine learning to predict and prevent lapses from a weight control diet; and ReLearn, an investigation of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) approach to optimizing intervention features for weight control. Dr. Forman was a previous chair of the Committee of Science and Practice for APA Division 12 (Society for Clinical Psychology) and a recent recipient of the ABCT Mentorship Award.

How do you stay current with developments in the field?

The best way to stay current and informed, in my opinion, is to write the Introduction/Background sections of grant proposals, manuscripts, and chapters. I also read through a few key journals every month, look at citation alerts that I receive, discuss relevant manuscripts with students and colleagues, and attend conferences.

What conferences do you regularly attend and why?

I have attended ABCT virtually every year for the past 15 years, despite the fact that it always seems to fall on my birthday! I think of ABCT as my academic home, and believe it is a showcase of rigorous and relevant research. The Society of Behavior Medicine (SBM) conference is also especially relevant because of the subject matter and also because so many researchers there are investigating the use of technology to improve psychological treatments. Other conferences I attend are the Obesity Society and Eating Disorders Research Society.

How long have you been a member of ABCT?

About 15 years

How has ABCT helped you professionally?

ABCT has always been an amazing place for me to see leaders in the field present their latest work, discuss ideas with colleagues, and, best of all, reconnect with colleagues/friends/former students. I often come away from the conference with new ideas, and sometimes with new collaborators.

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students?

I think ABCT will continue to evolve in interesting ways. For instance, I see it becoming focused on empirically supported treatments and not necessarily on cognitive and behavioral treatments. Not unrelated, I believe that the role of technological innovations will increasingly play a role at ABCT.

I know that my students will participate by presenting our work at ABCT. However, I hope that they also take on student leadership positions at ABCT, which I think is a highly worthwhile activity.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them?

Yes, many of my students are or have been members of ABCT. Many aspects of ABCT have proven useful to them. Not only have students presented posters, but a number have given talks at ABCT, which I believe to be especially good experience (not to mention an excellent social anxiety exposure). I have encouraged students to take the initiative in setting up symposia and panel discussions (as a moderator), which is a specialized form of networking, and allows for an intensive participation in ABCT whether or not the student has data to present in a given year. Students have also gotten a huge amount out of participating in a SIG. Finally, it goes without saying, that ABCT is a great place for students to meet faculty and students in other labs who are working in similar lines of research, and also potential future internship supervisors and employers.

For prospective students: Who should consider applying to your lab, and how can they find out more?

We have assembled two sites for prospective students. We have a more conventional webpage that discusses who should apply, how to apply, and so on. We also have put together a comprehensive set of information about our current and former students, including outcomes of those students.

We asked questions of WELL's students:

   1) What is your area of research interest?

   2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

   3) If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Elizabeth Lampe

I am interested in the development and prevention of eating disorders in adolescents and young adults and the effect of athletic body shape standards on body perception and development of eating disorders in adolescents and young adults.

ABCT has given me opportunities to learn about research outside my area and connect with other researchers who are interested in concepts similar to my interests.

I would recommend submitting your work as a poster or symposium, and attending special interest groups relevant to your research. Going to different talks during the convention can also be a really good learning experience for students.

Rebecca Crochiere

My research interests focus on the use of technology, specifically smart phone-based ecological momentary assessment and passive sensing systems, to predict and intervene upon triggers of dietary lapse among people who are overweight and following a dietary prescription.

ABCT has expanded my knowledge of cutting-edge research that uses technology to augment treatments related to weight-related behavioral outcomes. In addition, ABCT has been valuable in facilitating networking with a range of individuals, from prominent researchers to other students, working in my area of research.

I would recommend getting involved in special interest groups (SIGs) that align with your research or clinical interests, submitting a poster presentation abstract, and attending the annual conference to hear first-hand about new developments in your area of interest.

Stef Goldstein

My research focus is on developing and testing electronic/mobile health (e/mHealth) approaches (e.g., incorporating wearable sensors, advanced analytics) to assessing and intervening on weight-related behaviors implicated in CVD risk, particularly eating. I have pursued this line of research by using mHealth technology to deliver evidence-based interventions that directly target problematic eating.

ABCT has primarily been helpful for me a an avenue for networking. Attending the conferences but also being involved in the SIGs is a great way to meet like-minded individuals with whom you can collaborate. It is also an excellent forum for professional development issues as they host events for many different challenges faced by graduate students throughout the years (e.g., applying for internship, applying for postdoc, writing NIH grants, writing manuscripts). ABCT also offers several awards and research grants, so if you are interested in a research career I would recommend applying.

I would definitely recommend signing up for the list serve and becoming involved with relevant SIGs. I would also recommend using the website for student, teaching, and therapy resources.

Joanna Kaye

I am interested in evaluating innovations in the treatment of anxiety disorders using novel treatment modalities, assessment tools, and platforms to enhance treatment delivery. I am also interested in improving the dissemination and implementation of exposure-based treatments.

ABCT has provided a fruitful platform for exploring my research and clinical interests as they have evolved over the course of my training. Further, ABCT has provided me with invaluable experience presenting my own work via symposia and posters. Importantly, I have also met mentors, made friends, formed collaborations, and reunited with colleagues at ABCT conferences.

I would recommend getting involved the Special Interest Groups and early career/mentoring programming, and attending the annual conference

Diane Dallal

My research focuses on understanding the cognitive and affective processes that contribute to poor dietary decision-making. I am particularly interested in identifying the mechanisms by which novel treatments can be harnessed to enhance motivation for healthy dietary decision-making.

ABCT has given me critical exposure to current research and treatments to improve obesity outcomes. It has also allowed for valuable professional networking opportunities.

I would recommend attending some of the many SIG events and professional development talks at the annual convention.

Pictured in top row are Diane Dallal, Elizabeth Lampe, Caitlin Loyka, Juicebox, Rebecca Crochiere, Austin Powers, Brittney Evans, Evan Forman

Pictured in 2nd row are Molly Wright, Priscilla Whang, Stephanie Manasse

Appended in the front "row" are Joanna Kaye, Stephanie Goldstein


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Thank you for participating in ABCT's Featured Lab program! It's time to get acquainted with Jennifer Read and her lab.

Jennifer Read, Ph.D., directs the University at Buffalo Alcohol Research Lab at the University at Buffalo, Department of Psychology

Dr. Read is a Professor and Director of Clinical Training in the Department of Psychology at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York. In this position, she teaches, mentors doctoral and undergraduate students, and provides clinical supervision to trainees. She is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, and an Associate Field Editor for the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. Dr. Read's research focuses on the intersection of substance use, trauma, and posttraumatic stress (PTSD). She is the author of over 100 peer-reviewed papers and co-editor of a book on these topics. Her program of research has been well supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, as well as private foundations. Dr. Read is the recipient of the University at Buffalo's Excellence in Graduate Mentoring award (2016) and ABCT's Outstanding Contribution to Research award (2017).

Dr. Read is the Director of UB's Alcohol Research Lab. Most of the work conducted in the lab is focused on etiology. However, some recent work has been treatment-oriented research. For example, Dr. Read and her colleagues are conducting a clinical trial to examine the application of an exposure-based therapy, Narrative Exposure Therapy, for decreasing posttraumatic stress and substance risk in urban youths. Other work examines the social processes that may lead to both risk for and protection against alcohol-involved sexual assault. This includes a lab-based examination of how women's social and interpersonal goal orientations may affect perceptions of sexual assault risk. Dr. Read's research is done in collaboration with other investigators around the country and world. This is the 15th year of the lab, and since its inception, there has always been a lot going on. There are plenty of research and educational activities for graduate and undergraduate students to get involved in.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice? Through my own scholarly work, I naturally read quite a bit of research on the topics of addiction and trauma/PTSD. Also, through my editorial and review activities, I have a chance to see a lot of what's going on in the field, even before it is out in print. Further, I teach a graduate course in Psychopathology and I conduct clinical supervision of our Ph.D. students and so I am constantly looking for readings and other materials that will be useful learning vehicles for students as they develop as clinicians. Together, all of these things really push me to keep current with the literature and emerging topics in the field of psychology. On top of this, I use conferences to try to get some exposure to things that I might not otherwise learn about. Each year at ABCT, I try to choose at least 2 or 3 symposia or clinical round tables that are on a topic that I know very little about. This provides me with initial exposure to something new, and often prompts me to go find out more.

What conferences do you regularly attend and why? ABCT and the annual meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism (RSA) are the two conferences that I attend pretty much every year. RSA is at the beginning of the summer and of course, ABCT is at the end of the fall. The two conferences anchor the rest of the year for me. In addition to these, I also frequently attend conferences for the Association for Psychological Science (APS) and the American Psychological Association (APA), both of which offer excellent programming on topics relevant to clinical science.

How long have you been a member of ABCT? A long time. I first became a member when I was a graduate student, so I think it's been more than 20 years!

How has ABCT helped you professionally? Really, there are so many ways. ABCT has been a part of my professional life since I've had a professional life. Because of that, it is a part of the foundation of my professional identity. I belong to the Addictions SIG, and that's been really important in terms of maintaining connections with other addictions researchers. This has been a great source of support, information, and collegiality. Lastly, as I mentioned above, sometimes it's really helpful to me to find out about things that are not directly in my research area. The ABCT list serves, conferences, publications, and other materials really help to do that.

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students? A strength of ABCT is that is has evolved and changed with the times. The ABCT (or really, the AABT) that I joined as a graduate student is not the same organization that it is today. I look forward to seeing how ABCT will continue to respond to emerging issues in the field. ABCT plays a critical role in setting the agenda for researchers and clinicians to be useful and relevant in the face of changing national and global mental health priorities. I look forward to seeing how they use this role to shape the field in years to come.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them? Absolutely. There is a lot that ABCT has to offer to students and other early career professionals, and my students have really benefited from this. And, of course, the opportunity to disseminate their work has been incredibly valuable for their professional development. Also, over the years, my students have been members of the Addictive Behaviors SIG and I think that this has been a great way for them to establish professional connections and to meet other early career psychologists.

For prospective students: Anyone interested in addictions and/or trauma should consider applying to work with me. We have a fun, exciting, and busy lab, with lots of opportunities. Also, the Ph.D. program at UB is a great program, with strong clinical scientists who also happen to be really good people. The students and the faculty are, to a person, fantastic. It's a great place to be. If you think you might be interested, check us out at You also can get a general sense of the Ph.D. program and Psychology Department or the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program by going to our website:

Questions for students: We asked students each of the following questions:

What is your area of research interest?

How has ABCT been helpful to you? and

If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Tiffany Jenzer, Doctoral Student

My research focuses on examining the mechanisms and processes that link alcohol use disorder to other forms of psychopathology (e.g. PTSD). I am particularly interested in cognitive and attentional processes that influence alcohol use, as well as difficulties in coping ability and emotion regulation.

ABCT has allowed me to learn about important research outside my area and has given the me opportunity to meet and connect with other researchers.

I would recommend submitting your work as a poster or symposium, going to talks during the convention, and attending interest groups (SIG) relevant to your research. There are also many workshops that can be helpful if you are looking to learn new skills.

Jessica Blayney, Doctoral Student

I'm interested in understanding the individual and contextual risk factors associated with sexual assault as well as variation in the post-assault adaptation process, including distress and heavy drinking.

ABCT has been important in helping me expand my knowledge of current research and treatments related to post-assault outcomes. It also has been essential for networking for professional development.

There are a lot of benefits to student membership with ABCT including networking opportunities, professional development talks, and student research grants.

Greg Egerton, Doctoral Student

I am interested in the development of alcohol and substance use disorders in late adolescence and early adulthood, and how normative and unique life experiences inform substance-related decision making processes during this period.

ABCT has given me an opportunity to network with other researchers in my field of study.

I would recommend presenting a poster, as well as attending the SIG most relevant to your research interests.


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It's time to get acquainted with the people in the next installment of ABCT's Featured Lab.

Bethany Ann Teachman, PhD, directs the Program for Anxiety, Cognition, and Treatment (PACT) Lab at the University of Virginia, Department of Psychology

Bethany Teachman is a Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of Clinical Training and Director of Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Virginia's Psychology Department. She received her Ph.D. from Yale University, and her B.A. from the University of British Columbia. Her lab, the Program for Anxiety, Cognition, and Treatment (PACT), investigates cognitive processes that contribute to the development and maintenance of anxiety disorders and other forms of emotion dysregulation. The lab is especially interested in how thoughts that occur outside of our conscious control contribute to anxiety and avoidance, and how we can change thinking styles to improve emotional functioning.

Dr. Teachman has had continuous funding from the National Institutes of Health and private foundations over the past decade, and is an author on numerous publications, including books on treatment planning and eating disorders. Dr. Teachman is winner of a 2012 American Psychological Association Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology, the 2014 Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies Outstanding Mentor Award, an Association for Psychological Science Fellow, and a former Fellow at Stanford's Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.

Currently, Dr. Teachman is director of Project Implicit Mental Health, a public website that allows visitors to complete tasks assessing automatic associations tied to mental health, and director of MindTrails, a public website that provides free online cognitive bias modification training to encourage healthier thinking patterns. Teachman serves as chair of the Coalition for the Advancement and Application of Psychological Science, chair of the advisory steering committee for the American Psychological Association's clinical practice guidelines initiative, and is past president of the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?

I look forward to attending the ABCT convention every year for many reasons, including the chance to learn about exciting work in the field. I am also fortunate to work with an outstanding team of students and research staff who help keep me informed. In addition, I skim the table of contents via email to identify articles I need to read in journals I especially enjoy. I also gain insights as a regular journal and grant reviewer. I definitely wish I had more time to read articles that look fascinating (even if I don't need to read them at that moment for something our lab is working on).

What conferences do you regularly attend and why?

ABCT is the conference I attend every single year (I missed one for a family wedding, but otherwise it's a fall tradition!). I also often attend the Association for Psychological Science's convention, both because I often have meetings there tied to different service roles I do and because I love the chance to hear fantastic big-picture talks from non-clinical psychological scientists. Depending on the year, I sometimes also attend American Psychological Association or Anxiety and Depression Association of America's convention.

How long have you been a member of ABCT?

I've been a member and attending the convention for approximately two decades, since my first poster presentation as an undergraduate student at the 1996 annual convention. I recently had the wonderful experience of seeing my first academic "grandchild" give her first talk at ABCT.

How has ABCT helped you professionally?

ABCT is definitely my professional home! When we get a new finding, my students and I immediately think about the chance to share the work at ABCT. Moreover, the talks I've attended at ABCT conventions have informed not only my lab's research, but have also sparked ideas for papers I could invite in my editor roles, and helped me refine our training program as the Director of Clinical Training. The convention also provides great opportunities to connect with other psychological scientists working on similar problems, and, of course, attending the convention is a wonderful opportunity for reunions with former students and colleagues! Beyond the convention, I count on ABCT to be a voice for psychological science.

The resources at the ABCT web site are excellent, they publish excellent journals, and I work closely with some of the outstanding ABCT staff on different clinical science initiatives. Simply put, ABCT embodies so many of the values that guide my work as a clinical scientist, and I am honored to be an ABCT Fellow.

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students?

I look forward to fun and intellectually stimulating conferences for many years to come! More broadly, I'm excited by ABCT's efforts to extend their interdisciplinary focus. I think building bridges across disciplines (e.g., psychology, social work, etc.) will be essential for the field to more effectively address mental health needs. Also, I really like ABCT's new initiative to host think tanks that allow for in-depth focus on a 'hot' topic in the field - it's a great opportunity to bring together researchers and create a space to think together about how to collaboratively make progress on big questions.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them?

Absolutely! I think they have found the opportunities to attend the conventions and disseminate their work via talks and posters invaluable, and it has allowed them to receive feedback from so many inspiring leaders and junior scholars in our field.

For prospective students: (Who should consider applying to your lab, and how can they find out more? Include web addresses for your institution and your lab, if applicable)

Please visit our lab web site at We love talking to people about their work and the questions we pursue. Students who love collaborative research and love to play with ideas are a great fit for our lab.

See for a recent summary of some of our work.

To learn more about the University of Virginia psychology department and the clinical area, please visit:

Back row (left to right): Joey Meyer, Jeremy Eberle, Katie Daniel, Alex Daros, Henry Behan, Diheng Zhang

Middle row (left to right): Kellyn Blaisdell, Bethany Teachman, Julie Ji

Front row (left to right): Nauder Namaky, Karl Fua, Miranda Beltzer, Alex Werntz

We have questions for the lab's students. We asked each the following set of questions:

What is your area of research interest?

How has ABCT been helpful to you? and

If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Miranda Beltzer

My research focuses on learning processes that contribute to anxiety disorders, particularly social anxiety disorder. I also take a large-scale, population approach to study mental illness stigma.

ABCT has given me the opportunity to talk to important researchers both in and outside of my area of study.

I recommend that students attend the annual conference to hear about lots of cutting-edge research and a chance to get feedback on your own work!

Katie Daniel

I am interested in using mobile technology to better understand how differences in emotion regulation strategy choices within real life contexts are related to clinical outcomes such as depression and social anxiety disorder.

ABCT is a great way to get excited about new and ongoing research, both within the areas related to what you study and outside of your research focus.

In addition to attending the annual conference, it would also be great to participate in a Special

Interest Group (SIG) to get to know others with similar research interests.

Alexander Daros

I am interested in the emotional and cognitive processes that characterize individuals with mental disorders. While I have used a variety of approaches to study these processes, the PACT lab is supporting the integration of technology into my research to study the relationships between emotions and thoughts in real-time.

The ABCT conference allows me to explore new methods to conduct my research and network with leaders in my field.

Students should consider going to a convention, submitting an abstract or a symposium with peers and colleagues, and getting involved with the many student initiatives that serve to increase their experience of ABCT membership!

Jeremy Eberle

I am interested in basic and translational research on cognition, emotion, emotion regulation, and transdiagnostic mechanisms of disorder and change.

The convention has helped me learn about recent research, generate new ideas, meet other researchers, and catch up with former colleagues.

I would recommend attending the convention, going to presentations that interest you both within and outside your research area, and submitting an abstract of your work.

Karl Fua

Dynamics of biased cognitive and emotional responses in psychological disorders, and the role these biases play in the context of distressed romantic relationships.

The yearly conference has been extremely helpful in terms of exposure to cutting edge research (basic research, applications, new methods) in the field, networking with and meeting fellow researchers to discuss exciting new research results. It is also an excellent opportunity to reconnect with old friends and labmates.

Participate in the SIGs on topics they are interested in, and attend SIG discussions at the annual ABCT conference-great opportunity to get to know the researchers in the field who are passionate about the same topics they are!

Alex Werntz

My research currently focuses on how we can make CBT seem more appealing to individuals with anxiety disorders. My dissertation focuses on examining attitudes toward how CBT is described, learning what messages are engaging (and for whom), and how information about CBT is best presented on a website to encourage learning more about evidence-based treatments.

ABCT has been instrumental in my psychology career! At the conferences over the years, I've enjoyed sharing my research, hearing the latest from top researchers in our field, and networking with other individuals who are passionate about evidence-based psychological treatments.

If you're able to attend conferences, try to talk to researchers you admire. Although it can be anxiety-provoking, there is no better way of making connections than in person, and those relationships can be incredibly helpful over a career.


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In this, the inaugural featured lab from among the many whose researchers, teachers, and students are exploring one or more areas of scientific and/or clinical interest, we're pleased to showcase David Hansen's Child Maltreatment Lab at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

UNL is no stranger to ABCT's krieg lights, having been chosen as the most recent recipient of ABCT's Outstanding Training Program, in 2013.

Let's meet Dr. Hansen and the members of this lab.

David J. Hansen, Ph.D., Child Maltreatment Lab, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Hansen is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Clinical Psychology Training Program, University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). The lab conducts mental health services, consultation, training, and research through the Family Interaction Skills Clinic (FISC) of the UNL Psychological Consultation Center. Dr. Mary Fran Flood, the Co-Director of FISC along with Dr. Hansen, contributes to all of the lab endeavors and leads the activities in Head Start settings.

The Child Maltreatment Lab conducts research across various forms of maltreatment, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, and neglect. Research efforts include development of assessments and interventions for victims and families, maltreatment prevention, and understanding the correlates and consequences of maltreatment. The lab has developed and is evaluating a model intervention program based in a Child Advocacy Center, Project SAFE (Sexual Abuse Family Education), which addresses the mental health needs of child victims and their families following sexual abuse. This effort also includes the development of assessment instruments for evaluating outcomes, such as a weekly problems scale for child victims and their parents, and measures for assessing parent and child expectations for child functioning following sexual abuse. Related projects examine the heterogeneous symptom presentation of child and adolescent sexual abuse victims and factors that influence symptom presentation. Research also addresses maltreatment prevention in Head Start home-based and center-based programs. The lab's Head Start research investigates risk factors using an ecological model, explores relationships among risks and substantiated abuse and neglect, and examines the program's ability to identify and reduce risk.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?

Reading relevant research literature and attending conferences (like ABCT!) are valuable means of staying current. Collaborations and interactions with faculty and graduate students about research and practice are also helpful for learning updates and broadening exposure to recent developments. Providing consultation and clinical services in community settings offer valuable opportunities to understand the translational issues of research developments (e.g., implementation in real-world settings, impacting policy at the organizational level). Regularly engaging in editorial activities for journals and professional publications, as an editor and reviewer, are useful for thoughtful consideration of a wide range of research, clinical, and professional issues. In addition, working in interdisciplinary teams and centers, including recent work as Director of the UNL Center for Brain, Biology and Behavior, provides tremendous opportunities for broadening exposure to research methods and the latest findings from related fields.

What conferences do you regularly attend and why?

The conference I attend most regularly is the ABCT annual convention. (For those who don't recall, the acronym in the earlier years, when I started attending, was AABT.) I have attended and presented at the convention EVERY year since my fourth year as a graduate student in 1983. This November will be my 35th consecutive year! The annual ABCT convention is a terrific conference for keeping current with scientific approaches and issues in clinical psychology and the many advances in evidence-based practice.

I also regularly attend the annual conference of the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology (CUDCP). As Director of our Clinical Psychology Training Program that conference is very helpful for staying current on training and professional issues, and the association also leads efforts to shape policies and practices that support evidence-based practice and integration of scientific and clinical training.

How long have you been a member of ABCT?

I became a student member in 1983 and a full member in 1985.

How has ABCT helped you professionally?

ABCT has provided a valuable network and opportunities for connecting with others in research, as well as professional issues (e.g., journal and editorial activities, clinical training issues). I appreciate being able to include and collaborate with students in these opportunities.

A concrete example of professional impact is that getting an interview for my first faculty job was aided by my attendance at an AABT convention during my internship year. I got a chance to meet some of the faculty at West Virginia University and I was later told that those interactions helped when the search committee was selecting one more person to interview!

How do you see the future of ABCT for both you and your students?

I expect that ABCT will continue be a leader in advancing and disseminating effective evidence-based approaches for assessment, intervention, and prevention, and that lab students and I will continue to participate in and benefit from ABCT's many endeavors.

Are your students members of ABCT? If so, what has been most useful for them?

Student members of the lab are members of ABCT and regularly attend the ABCT convention. Lab members also participate in the ABCT Child Maltreatment and Interpersonal Violence Special Interest Group (CMIV SIG). Students benefit from the opportunity to network and share their research at the convention, and enjoy staying informed on a variety of research, training, and professional issues through the Behavior Therapist. The CMIV SIG provides the opportunity to connect and learn from others doing work in child maltreatment and provides opportunities for service and leadership. Alumni from the lab regularly attend the ABCT convention as well, so it is also a great place to catch up with friends and former colleagues!

For prospective students:

For more information about the UNL Child Maltreatment Lab please see our webpage at

Graduate student members of the lab are students in the UNL Clinical Psychology Training Program (UNL CPTP).

Details about the CPTP, including application information, can be found at

We look forward to recruiting students with interest in advancing clinical research and practice for addressing and preventing child maltreatment!

Jessie Pogue

1) What is your area of research interest?

My research interest is child sexual abuse (CSA) and more specifically how to identify children at highest risk for CSA.

2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

ABCT has offered great networking opportunities with psychologists across the world.

3) If a student was thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

I would recommend joining a Special Interest Group (SIG) that matches their interests to help them connect with others in the field.

Kelsey McCoy

1) What is your area of research interest?

My area of research interest is focused on factors associated with risk and resilience in maltreated children and the evaluation of early childhood intervention and prevention programs for at risk children and families.

2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

ABCT helps me expand and maintain my professional network and exposes me to research areas outside of my own.

3) If a student was thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

I recommend getting involved in a Special Interest Group (SIG), so that you have opportunities to interact with and learn from individuals that are within your field.

Kate Theimer

1) What is your area of research interest?

My research interest is child maltreatment, specifically child sexual abuse.

2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

The ABCT convention is an excellent chance to network with others and a great way to disseminate my research projects.

3) If a student was thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

I would recommend the student attend the annual convention and participate in a Special Interest Group (SIG) to get to know others with similar research interests.

Brittany Biles

1) What is your area of research interest?

I am interested in examining abuse attributions following child sexual abuse (e.g., self-blame, guilt), and the factors associated with these attributions, to further understand the heterogeneity of abuse outcomes and examine how interventions implemented at the level of abuse attributions influence outcomes.

2) How has ABCT been helpful to you?

The ABCT annual convention is great for sharing my own research and seeing others' research within child maltreatment, as well as learning about other research I am not as familiar with from different fields.

3) If a student was thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

The Child Maltreatment and Interpersonal Violence SIG and all of the activities associated with the SIG have been great for me because it is an excellent way to network with people within the field of child maltreatment.

UNL Child Maltreatment Lab

Pictured (Left to Right):
Brittany Biles, Jessie Pogue, Mary Fran Flood, David Hansen, Kelsey McCoy, Kate Theimer



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