Research

As a learner-centered and discovery-driven institution, Western Michigan University values the research of its faculty. The following lists the research interests of faculty members in the Department of Psychology.

Jonathan Baker

  • Applied research in Behavioral Gerontology, including the assessment/treatment of behavioral excesses and developing programs that remediate behavioral deficits in older adults with Neurocognitive disorders/dementia, treatment adoption and verbal behavior.
  • Applied research in staff training in aging/intellectual disabilities human services 
  • Translational research in Behavioral Gerontology

Lisa Baker

  • Behavioral pharmacology of addictive drugs
  • Preclinical screening of addictive drugs for abuse liability including drug discrimination, conditioned place preference, and behavioral sensitization procedures
  • Preclinical screening of novel psychiatric medications for pharmacotherapeutic potential.

Amy Damashek

  • Unintentional childhood injury
  • Child maltreatment

Anthony DeFulio

  • Contingency management and health incentives
  • Behavioral economics
  • Behavioral pharmacology

Wayne Fuqua

  • The management of health risk behaviors and the treatment of habit disorders
  • Developmental disabilities
  • Functional assessment and analysis

Scott Gaynor

  • Psychotherapy process and outcome
  • Contemporary behavior therapy

Douglas Johnson

  • Organizational behavior management
  • Instructional design
  • Evidence-based education and training techniques, including computer-based instruction

Heather McGee

  • Comprehensive behavioral systems analysis
  • Behavior Based Safety
  • Instructional Technology and Learning

Amy Naugle

  • Psychological and interpersonal factors associated with physical and sexual victimization
  • Functional analytic psychotherapy

Sacha Pence

  • Effects of treatment integrity errors on intervention outcomes
  • Assessment and treatment of severe problem behavior
  • Skill-acquisition programming with children with autism spectrum disorder and developmental disabilities
  • Practitioner, teacher, and caregiver training

Stephanie Peterson

  • Dimensions of reinforcement
  • Choice between communication and problem behavior for children in the applied setting,
  • Behavioral technology
  • Literacy and special education

Cynthia J. Pietras

  • Behavioral pharmacology, models of choice
  • Pro-social and aggressive behavior
  • Experimental analysis of human and nonhuman behavior

Alan Poling

  • Experimental analysis of behavior
  • Autism and other developmental disablities
  • Behavioral pharmacology
  • Clinical psychopharmacology 

Brooke Smith

  • Processes of change in exposure therapy
  • Novel methodological approaches to measuring processes of change
  • Mindfulness and acceptance-based psychotherapies

Ron Van Houten

  • Traffic safety
  • Simulation research
  • Community and organizational psychology

Jessica Van Stratton

  • School-based applications of behavior analysis

  • Social skills training

  • Self-monitoring and self-management

  • Assessment and treatment of severe problem heavier

  • Practitioner, teacher, and caregiver training