D. Scott Sibley, Ph.D., LMFT, CFLE

Title: Associate Professor and Associate Chair
Division: Family and Consumer Sciences
Unit: Human Development and Family Sciences
Office Location: Wirtz Hall 123
Office Phone: 815-753-6344
Office Fax: 815-753-1321
Email: dscottsibley@niu.edu

Courses Taught

  • HDFS 284 – Introduction to Family Relationships
  • HDFS 477/577 – Domestic Violence and Trauma in the Family
  • HDFS 693 – Addiction and Substance Abuse in Marriage and Family Therapy


  • Ph.D., Kansas State University, Human Ecology: Marriage and Family Therapy, 2015
  • M.S., University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Child, Youth and Family Studies: Marriage and Family Therapy, 2012
  • M.A., Southern Utah University, Professional Communication, 2010 
  • B.S., Brigham Young University, Psychology, 2008

Research Interests

  • Commitment in couple relationships (decidetocommit.com)
  • Romantic relationship formation
  • Marriage and the prevention of relationship distress and divorce
  • Decision making among the emerging adult (18-29 year olds) population
  • Marriage and Family Therapy theories (e.g., Contextual, Bowen)

Published Books

  • Schmidt, A. E., and Sibley, D. S. (2019). Contextual therapy for family health: Clinical applications. New York, NY: Routledge.

Selected Publications

  • Eddy, B. P., Springer, P., Sibley, D. S., Fife, S., and Turns, B. (2022). Keeping the ledger balanced during pregnancy. International Journal of Systemic Therapy. 33, 2, 87-108.

  • Turns, B., Springer, P. R., Eddy, B. P., and Sibley, D. S. (2021). “Your exile is showing”: Integrating sandtray with internal family systems therapy. The American Journal of Family Therapy, 49, 1, 74-90.

  • Springer, P., Turns, B., Sibley, D. S., and Eddy, B. (2021). Removing the Mystery in Supervision: Engaging in Transparent Supervision. International Journal of Systemic Therapy, 32, 1, 41-57.

  • Turns, B., Springer, P. R., and Sibley, D. S. (2019). Removing the “mystery” in therapy: Transparency as a continuous intervention in family psychotherapy. Journal of Family Psychotherapy, 30, 1, 1-19.

  • Turns, B. A., and Sibley, D. S. (2018). Does maternal spanking lead to bullying behaviors at school? A longitudinal study. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 27, 9, 2824-2832.

  • Li, X., Theisen, A., Sibley, D. S., and Seo, C. (2018). Resourcefulness: Current insights and future directions for family scholars and clinicians. The Family Journal, 26, 4, 433-443.

  • Sibley, D. S., Schmidt, A. E., and Kimmes, J. G. (2016). Applying a contextual therapy framework to treat panic disorder: A case study. Journal of Family Psychotherapy, 24(4), 299-317.

  • Schmidt, A. E., Green, M. S., Sibley, D. S., and Prouty, A. M. (2016). Effects of parental infidelity on adult children's relational ethics with their partners: A contextual perspective. Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy, 15, 3, 193-212.

  • Vennum, A., Hardy, N., Sibley, D. S., and Fincham, F. D. (2015). Dedication and sliding in emerging adult cyclical and non-cyclical romantic relationships. Family Relations, 64, 3, 407-419.

  • Sibley, D. S., Springer, P. R., Vennum, A., and Hollist, C. S. (2015). An exploration of the construction of commitment leading to marriage. Marriage & Family Review, 51, 2, 183-203.

  • Sibley, D. S., Kimmes, J. G., and Schmidt, A. E. (2015). Generating new stories of commitment in couple relationships by utilizing the sliding versus deciding framework. Journal of Family Psychotherapy26(1), 68-73.

Contact Us

College of Health and Human Sciences
Wirtz Hall 227

The Dean's Office is open for face-to-face meetings by appointment only.

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