Research Opportunities

Professor Sheila Barrett works with student, Jada Blackmon, on research project.

The College of Health and Human Sciences offers both undergraduate and graduate students many opportunities to participate in faculty-mentored research.

Undergraduates can participate in the popular Undergraduate Special Opportunities in Artistry and Research program (USOAR), as well as other research through individual degree programs.

Graduates not only have several research opportunities, many programs also include professional clinics and labs in which to conduct projects. The College of Health and Human Sciences has the following clinics and laboratories:

Projects Currently Seeking Undergraduate Researchers

Professor Project Name
Direct Care Worker Palliative Care Training Project
Awareness Initiative to Decrease Alzheimer's Disease Stigma

Faculty Research Areas

Advocacy, Leadership, Community Development
Derryl Block, Ph.D., MPH, M.S.N, RN
  • health workforce development
  • public health nursing
  • community development
Audiology, Hearing/Noise Conservation, Deafness Rehabilitation
Danica Billingsly, Au.D., CCC-A
  • audiologic and tinnitus rehabilitation strategies
  • hearing assistive technology outcomes
  • supervision/clinical teaching techniques and student outcomes
  • audiologic care of persons in life transitions and second language learners
King Chung, Ph.D., CCC-A, F-AAA
  • optimization of hearing aid, cochlear implant and hearing protector performance
  • wind noise characteristics and reduction strategies
  • humanitarian services and research
Blythe Kitner, AuD, CCC-A
  • head injuries
  • vestibular and electrophysiologic measures in sports related injuries and blast injuries
  • impact of rehabilitation on the vestibular system and cognitive function
  • aging and pathologies of the vestibular system
Charles Pudrith, PhD, AuD
  • genetics of susceptibility to noise/toxin induced hearing loss
  • hearing conservation in student musicians
  • pre-clinical measurements of noise/toxin induced hearing loss
Diane Schecklong, AuD, CCC-A
  • hearing assessment of all ages, with a particular interest in the geriatric population
  • intervention with hearing aids and counseling for individuals, couples, and families for hearing related issues
  • community outreach
Matthew Wilson, Ph.D.
  • applicability of auditory electrophysiology to the study of sport- and blast-related concussions
Balance
Hamid Bateni, Ph.D.
  • human balance
  • fall prediction and prevention
  • prosthetics and orthotics
  • amputation
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • balance and gait characteristics in individuals with disability
Cancer/Chronic Illness and/or Pain, Pain Management
Laura Beamer, Ph.D., DNP, CNP, CNS, AOCNP, AOCNS, APNG
  • oncology
  • cancer genetics
  • patient reported outcomes
  • quality of life
  • cancer drug development
  • vulnerable populations/minorities
  • multisite international studies
  • skin dysbiosis during external radiotherapy
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC
  • pain management
  • chronic pain
Sarah Geiger, Ph.D.
  • cardiovascular effects of common environmental agents
  • sleep disorders and associated chronic disease outcomes
  • breast cancer and mammography-seeking behavior in Amish women
Masih Shokrani, Ph.D., MT(ASCP)
  • cancer
Josephine Umoren, Ph.D., RD
  • role of nutrition and physical activity in children and adolescents in prevention of chronic disease
Communicative Disorders, Language Development
Allison Gladfelter, Ph.D., M.S., CCC-SLP
  • language development in children with autism spectrum disorder
  • word learning in children: phonological aspects of words, prosodic patterns, and the semantic richness of the learning context
In-Sop Kim, Ph.D.
  • neuromotor speech disorders
  • functional near-infrared optical brain imaging (FNIR) study
  • speech intelligibility and cognitive processing in bilingual populations
Jamie Mayer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • acquired neurogenic cognitive-communicative disorders with etiologies in progressive disease or stroke/brain injury
  • behavioral treatment protocols, including constraint-induced aphasia treatment, melodic intonation therapy, computerized treatment/computerized brain training, art therapy, physical activity, attention process training, phonological training
  • memory function in aphasia
Deborah McGee, M.A., CCC-SLP
  • pediatrics
  • language development
  • early childhood language development
Sherrill Morris, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • assessment of phonological development
  • disorder prevention and treatment efficacy
Janet Olson, Ph.D., CCC-A/SLP
  • early language acquisition
  • mother-infant interactions
  • gesture use
  • mothers' use of internal state language
  • speech processing in children with hearing loss
Consumer Studies, Apparel
Sarah Cosbey, Ph.D.
  • social psychology of dress and appearance
  • body image disturbances
  • body image, body satisfaction, and the media
  • gendered appearances in the media
  • theories of fashion change
Hyun-Mee Joung, Ph.D.
  • brand loyalty
  • clothing disposal behaviors
  • fashion consumers
  • appearance management
Disability, Autism Services
Bryan Dallas, Ph.D., CRC
  • postsecondary accommodations for students with disabilities
  • universal design in instructional settings
  • assistive technology
  • vocational evaluation
Allison Gladfelter, Ph.D., M.S.N, CCC-SLP
  • language development in children with autism spectrum disorder
Jennifer Gray, Ph.D., MPP
  • long-term care workforce
  • health promotion behaviors of older adults and persons with disabilities
  • access to health services for persons with disabilities
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • balance, coordination, gait and physical activity in children with autism spectrum disorder
  • exercise in children with autism spectrum disorder
Disability, Parkinson Services
In-Sop Kim, Ph.D.
  • Neuromotor Speech Disorders
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • LSVT BIG community exercise program for adults with Parkinson and Down Syndrome
Epidemiological Studies: Environmental Hazards, Human Sexual Behavior and Health
Arlene Keddie, Ph.D., M.S.PH
  • social epidemiology
  • health disparities
  • aging
  • depression
  • obesity
  • metabolic syndrome
  • type 2 diabetes
Charles Pudrith, Ph.D., Au.D.
  • association of hearing loss and exposure to hearing health risk factors in nationwide databases
Tomoyuki Shibata, Ph.D.
  • evaluations of environmental risk factors (biological, chemical, physical, and socioeconomic) that potentially affect human health, especially children's health
Ping Yao, Ph.D.
  • biostatistics
  • application in health research
Family and Marital Interactions, Parenting
Susan Bowers, Ph.D.
  • family day care
  • eldercare and widowhood
  • professional issues in early childhood education
  • caregiving across the lifespan
  • parenting
Sherry Fang, Ph.D.
  • acculturation process for immigrant families and children
  • parenting styles in various cultures
  • family strengths
  • early childhood development
Sophie Li, Ph.D., MED
  • diverse couple and family systems
  • systemic and ecological influence on child development
  • learned resilience and resourcefulness
Jane Rose Njue, Ph.D., CFLE
  • family strengths perspective in cross-cultural family functioning
  • adolescent resiliency across the diaspora
  • role of family functioning in coping with discrimination
Thomas Pavkov, Ph.D.
  • mental health services, outcomes, research, and policy
  • child and family serving systems, including mental health, juvenile justice, child welfare, and education
  • family dynamics and atypical adolescent development
  • supervision in human service agencies
  • child maltreatment and delinquency
Lin Shi, Ph.D., LMFT
  • attachment and intimate relationship interaction
  • application of attachment theory in couple and individual therapy
  • trauma and trauma recovery
D. Scott Sibley, Ph.D., CFLE
  • commitment in couple relations
  • romantic relationship formation
  • decision-making in the emerging adult population (18-29 years old)
  • marriage and family therapy theories (contextual therapy, etc.)
Florensia Surjadi, Ph.D.
  • family relationships
  • community and family influence on child health and well-being
  • quantitative research methods and longitudinal data analysis
Charline Xie, Ph.D.
  • Asian American family strengths
  • intergenerational relationships
Fitness and Exercise
Lynn Herrmann, Ph.D., MPH
  • exercise and technology
  • social aspects of exercise how social norms and peers influence exercise perceptions and behaviors
Brynn Nahlik, DPT
  • exercises in persons with chronic neuromuscular conditions risk factors for injury in overhead athletes
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • LSVT BIG community exercise program for adults with Parkinson and Down Syndrome
  • use of wearable technology to analyze and complete exercise programs
  • pre-pregnancy exercise program for preventative women’s health
Gerontology
Susan Bowers, Ph.D.
  • eldercare and widowhood
  • caregiving across the lifespan
Arlene Keddie, Ph.D., M.S.PH
  • health disparities
  • aging
  • disability and social factors in older Mexican Americans
  • metabolic syndrome
  • type 2 diabetes
Jamie Mayer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • art therapy to augment quality of life for individuals with dementia
  • brain training to augment cognitive function/cognitive reserve across the lifespan
Health Care and Treatment
Laura Beamer, Ph.D., DNP, CNP, CNS, AOCNP, AOCNS, APNG
  • health systems uptake of national guidelines
Jaeyong Bae, Ph.D.
  • adoption of and outcomes from use of health information technology
  • health economics
  • medical errors and patient safety
  • physician incentives
  • medical decision making
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC
  • issues in internal medicine
  • translation of evidence into practice
  • sepsis
  • diabetes
  • healthcare for vulnerable populations
  • pain management
  • chronic pain
Health Disparities, Underrepresented/Diverse Populations
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC

  • healthcare for vulnerable populations
  • rural health care
Kari Hickey, Ph.D.
  • health of vulnerable populations
Arlene Keddie, Ph.D., M.S.PH
  • racial and ethnic health disparities
  • socioeconomic status and health
  • social epidemiology
  • type 2 diabetes in vulnerable populations
Jinsook Kim, Ph.D., M.P.H., D.D.S.
  • social ecology of health and health behavior
  • health disparities
Kathryn Mazurek, Ph.D.
  • mental health/substance abuse
  • vulnerable populations
  • population based surveys
Bette Montgomery, Ph.D.
  • cultural diversity in family and consumer science education
Hospitality
Lan Li, Ph.D.
  • entrepreneurship in the hospitality and tourism industry
  • management skills for food and nutrition professionals
  • international hospitality operations
Eunha Myung, Ph.D.
  • sustainability in hospitality
  • hospitality ethics
Immunology
Charles Pudrith, Ph.D., Au.D.
  • genetics of reactive oxygen species metabolizers and hearing loss
Masih Shokrani, Ph.D., MT(ASCP)
  • role of inflammation in autoimmunity/hypersensitivity
Medical Laboratory Sciences
Jeanne Isabel, M.S.Ed, MLS, SH(ASCP)
  • student perspectives of learning in the clinical setting as related to competency building and professional socialization
  • study abroad programs for Health and Human Sciences
  • international MLS education
Masih Shokrani, Ph.D., MT(ASCP)
  • immunology/clinical microbiology and clinical biochemistry/hematology/cancer
  • study of autoimmune disorders; cytokines; diabetes; elucidation of signal transduction pathways
  • management of Diabetes Mellitus and its association with cardio-metabolic syndrome
Mental Illness, Mental Health Services
Arlene Keddie, Ph.D., M.S.PH
  • depression suicide
Kathleen Musker, Ph.D.
  • life patterns - women transitioning through menopause
  • human rights of persons with mental illnesses
Kathryn Mazurek, Ph.D.
  • mental health/substance abuse
  • vulnerable populations
  • population based surveys
Thomas Pavkov, Ph.D.
  • mental health services, outcomes, research and policy
  • child and family serving systems, including mental health, juvenile justice, child welfare and education
Carol Wahlstrom, M.S.
  • stigma of mental illness
  • caregiver stress
Neonates, Infants, and Children
Priyanka Chakraborty, Ph.D., RDN
  • promoting dietary practices through nutrition education
  • nutrition issues and needs of children with special needs, physical disability, interdisciplinary play group
  • infant and young child feeding practices in developing countries
  • global development, physical activity and nutritional status in children
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC
  • bullying and social media
  • child obesity
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • Interdisciplinary Parent/Toddler Developmental Playgroup
  • global development and physical activity in young children
Janet Olson, Ph.D., CCC-A/SLP
  • early language acquisition mother-infant interactions gesture use mothers' use of internal state language speech processing in children with hearing loss
Thomas Pavkov, Ph.D.
  • child maltreatment and delinquency child welfare
Susan Schaub, M.S.
  • maternal newborn health with focus in labor and delivery
  • childbirth and postpartum education
  • human patient simulation
Neuroscience
Allison Gladfelter, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • interactions between language and motor systems during tasks of memory
  • learning in children with typical and atypical language development
Jamie Mayer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • acquired neurogenic cognitive-communicative disorders with etiologies in progressive disease or stroke/brain injury
  • behavioral treatment protocols, including constraint-induced aphasia treatment, melodic intonation therapy, computerized treatment/computerized brain training, art therapy, physical activity, attention process training, phonological training
  • memory function in aphasia
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • LSVT BIG community exercise program for adults with Parkinson and Down Syndrome
  • balance, coordination, gait and physical activity in children with autism spectrum disorder
Nursing
Laura Beamer, Ph.D., DNP, CNP, CNS, AOCNP, AOCNS, APNG
  • nursing faculty knowledge and attitudes regarding genetics, genomics, and pharmacogenomics
Cathy Carlson, Ph.D.
  • pain management
  • evidence-based nursing practice
Jie Chen, Ph.D.
  • optimization of nursing work process to improve quality of patient care
  • transition of pre-licensure nursing students to professional practice
  • prevention of musculoskeletal disorders related to patient-handling among health caregivers
  • cultural competency to reduce ethnic disparities in health care
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC
  • issues in internal medicine
  • translation of evidence into practice
  • sepsis
  • diabetes
  • healthcare for vulnerable populations
  • pain management
  • chronic pain
  • bullying and social media
  • child obesity
  • adolescent PCOS
  • female infertility
Nancy Petges, Ed.D., MSN, RN, CNE
  • Demographic characteristics as predictors of pre-licensure nursing student success.
  • Emotional intelligence as a predictor of success in pre-licensure nursing students.
  • Storytelling utilizing the SBARR (Situation, Background, Assessment, Recommendation, Review) framework as an effective didactic teaching method.
Manju Daniel, Ph.D., M.S.N, RNC
  • Immigrant health
  • Health disparities
  • Lifestyle physical activity among South Asian Indian immigrants
  • Physical activity among low income food pantry patrons
Jeanette Rossetti, Ed.D., RN
  • teaching and outcome assessment including nursing education inspiration in teaching portfolio assessment issues in mental health nursing including patient rights, cultural influences, and pet therapy interventions
Nutrition, Weight Loss, Diabetes
Sheila Barrett, Ph.D.
  • evaluation of food intake of school children who eat the National School Lunch Meals
  • validated photography as a tool for collecting food intakes; comparison of macro nutrients of school meals with meals eaten away from school
  • assessment of risk factor of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases among adolescents
Katherine J. Coulter, DNP MSN, APN, FNP-BC
  • obesity
  • diabetes
Arlene Keddie, Ph.D., M.S.PH
  • obesity
  • metabolic syndrome
  • type 2 diabetes
Judith Lukaszuk, Ph.D., RD, LDN
  • sports nutrition
  • ergogenic aids
  • herbal medicine
  • dietary supplements
Masih Shokrani, PHD, MT(ASCP) diabetes management of Diabetes Mellitus and its association with cardio-metabolic syndrome
Josephine Umoren, Ph.D., RD lifestyle factors affecting nutritional status role of nutrition and physical activity in children and adolescents in prevention of chronic disease
Rehabilitation Process and Outcomes, Patient Rights
MJ Blaschak, Ph.D.
  • management of individuals with neuromuscular problems
  • efficacy of physical therapy treatments
  • alternative models of patient management
  • biomechanics and motor control
Daniel Boutin, Ph.D., CRC, NCC
  • rehabilitation interventions to help persons with significant disabilities obtain competitive employment
Jamie Mayer, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
  • working memory and aphasia
  • Brain-Age: can video games improve cognition in stroke survivors?
  • attention process training after stroke treatment of reading skills in stroke survivors
Amanda McCarthy, Ed.D., CRC, CVE, LPC, PVE
  • clinical and administrative supervision of rehabilitation counseling professionals
  • preparation of rehabilitation counseling graduate students
  • vocational assessment in rehabilitation populations
Noel Ysasi, Ph.D., CRC
  • veteran and military population
  • psychosocial aspects of disability
  • stigma and disability
  • public and private sector rehabilitation counseling
Teaching Methods
Melani W. Duffrin, Ph.D, RD
  • using food as a tool to teach math and science
  • patient education technologies
Beverly Henry, Ph.D., RD, LDN
  • interprofessional education
Bette Montgomery, Ph.D.
  • curriculum change and reform
  • professional development
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • clinical decision making of 3rd year DPT students: intervention or referral?
  • comparison of clinical decision making of 3rd year DPT students with physicians and licensed physical therapists
Wearable Technology
Christina Odeh, PT, DHSc, PCS
  • Use of wearable technology to analyze and complete exercise programs