Program faculty are active scholars with research agendas consistent with the Program’s ecological-behavioral orientation for practice and research. Faculty research is primarily applied, aimed at identifying effective interventions to support struggling students and evaluating processes to best provide supports to students, teachers, and families. Research projects are conducted in public schools throughout the greater Cincinnati area as well as alternative educational settings serving students with disabilities and the University’s on-campus pre-school.
Faculty provide close research mentorship to students through regular advising meetings, leading research projects, supervising student research, and participating in Doctoral Colloquium meetings focused on professional issues relevant to doctoral study in psychology. As role models, faculty maintain active research agendas, including publishing in peer-reviewed journals and sharing research findings at professional meetings. Faculty regularly publish and present with students. Faculty profiles provide an overview of faculty research interests, including information on grant-funded projects and links to published works.
Active student participation in research is expected across all years of the Program. Through ongoing membership on research teams with faculty and other doctoral students, students progress from participating in research to leading research. Program expectations are for all students to have at least three presentations at national, regional, or state professional meetings prior to graduation. Also, students are expected to be co-authors on a minimum of two publications in refereed journals prior to graduation, in addition to the dissertation.
Recent topics of student-led research include:
- Implementing a culturally enriched social skills program for African American males
- Increasing home-school collaboration for non-English speaking families using a daily behavior report card
- Using brief experimental analysis to identify effective reading comprehension interventions
- Examining the effects of group contingencies combined with positive peer reporting to improve the classroom behavior of students with emotional and behavioral disorders
- Improving the math performance of English-language learners using a culturally relevant word problem solving intervention
- Evaluating electronic shared storybook reading to improve early literacy outcomes for preschoolers
- Promoting the generalization of group contingency intervention effects on student behavior
- Using trial-based functional analysis to inform intervention planning for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Students participate in faculty- and student-led research teams, primarily assisting with data collection. Students complete foundational coursework in statistics.
Students continue participating in research teams, assuming increased responsibilities such as coordinating data collection and participating in writing. Students take research methods coursework and complete advanced coursework in behavioral research methods. Working closely with the faculty course instructor for advanced behavioral research methods, students develop an original proposal based on their own research interests for a pre-dissertation research project that uses behavioral research methods to be completed in Year 3.
Students assume leadership roles on research teams and complete their pre-dissertation research study. Students complete coursework in advanced statistics. By the end of the third year, doctoral students have learned multiple rigorous methods to evaluate empirically-based practices and are prepared to defend a dissertation proposal by the start of Year 4.
Students complete the culminating research experience through the dissertation. Students also continue to be involved in faculty-led research projects. Students are expected to at a minimum have defended a dissertation proposal and collected dissertation data prior to internship in Year 5.
Students continue building research competencies as they complete internship.
Across the first four years of the Program, students continuously participate in Doctoral Colloquium in School Psychology. All School Psychology Program faculty attend these meetings, which focus on professional issues relevant to doctoral-level study in school psychology. Meeting topics include: research, including research presentations by faculty and students; applying for internship through the APPIC match; careers in school psychology, including faculty, clinical, and school-based positions; licensure; and seeking external funding for research. At least one guest speaker is invited to Doctoral Colloquium each year to speak about his/her career path and current roles and research. Doctoral Colloquium provides monthly, structured opportunities for interaction between faculty and students and across student cohorts around important topics in doctoral preparation.