Mar 05, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Psychology - Applied Developmental (ADPS)

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SUSAN SONNENSCHEIN, Graduate Program Co-Director
DAVID SCHULTZ, Graduate Program Co-Director

Degree Offered

Ph.D. (Degree Types )


Core ADP Faculty

BORRERO, JOHN, Ph.D., University of Florida; applied behavior analysis, single-subject research methods, caregiver-child interactions.
CENGHER, MIRELA, Ph.D., City University of New York; behavior analysis, language and cognitive development.
CHEAH, CHARISSA, Ph.D., University of Maryland, College Park; Ethnic/religious minority children and adolescents’ social and emotional development and context/culture.
FOUNTAIN, ERIKA, Ph.D., Georgetown University; adolescence and the law: navigating legal contexts, legal decision making, family engagement, and developmentally informed justice policy.
GODWIN, KARRIE, Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University; development of attention, executive function, and the implications for learning.
SCHULTZ, DAVID, Ph.D., University of Delaware; Intervention/prevention in infancy and early childhood. Social and emotional development.
SONNENSCHEIN, SUSAN, Ph.D., State University of New York, Stony Brook; Factors that facilitate the cognitive and educational development of children from different demographic groups.
SUN, SHUYAN, Ph.D., University of Cincinnati, Measurement, statistics, and evaluation.

Additional UMBC Psychology Faculty


BRODSKY, ANNE, Ph.D., University of Maryland, College Park; Clinical-community psychology.
DAHLQUIST, LYNNDA M., Ph.D., Purdue University; Child health, pain, chronic illness.
MURPHY, CHRISTOPHER M., Ph.D., State University of New York, Stony Brook; Clinical psychology.
WALDSTEIN, SHARI, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh; Behavioral medicine.

Associate Professors

BARRUECO, SONDRA, Ph.D., University of Denver; Clinical Psychology, multisystemic prevention interventions.
BEATTY MOODY, DANIELLE, Ph.D. , City University of New York; Racial/ethnic disparities in cardiovascular disease risk.
NNAWULEZI, NKIRU, Ph.D., Michigan State University, Community Psychology.
PITTS, STEVEN C. Ph.D., Arizona State University; Quantitative psychology, social psychology.
YOON, LIRA, Ph.D., Northwestern University; Clinical Psychology.

Assistant Professors

BILLINGSLY,  JANELLE, Ph.D., University of Virginia, Community Psychology.
FRANZ, MOLLY, Ph.D., University of Nebraska - Lincoln; Clinical Psychology.
HWANG, SOPHIA, Ph.D.. New York University, Applied Psychology.
KHAMBATY, TASNEEM, Ph.D., Purdue University; Clinical Health Psychology.
NOVAK, MATTHEW, Ph.D., University of Kansas, Behavioral Psychology.
RAKHSHAN ROUHAKHTAR, PAMELA, Ph.D. University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Clinical Psychology; psychosis.
SCHACHT, REBECCA, Ph.D., University of Washington; Clinical Psychology.

Professor of Practice

LASSON, ELLIOT D., Ph.D., Wayne State University; I/O Psychology, Human Resources

Clinical Associate Professor

QUITON, RAIMI, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore; Neuroscience; neural basis of pain.
WILLIAMS, GREG, Ed.D., George Washington University; Education.

Principle Lecturers

ALONSO, DIANE, PH.D., University of Maryland, College Park; Cognitive Psychology, Industrial/Organizational Psychology.
O’BRIEN, EILEEN, Ph.D., The Catholic University of America; Early-childhood development, women and children’s health policy, integrated behavioral health services.

Sr. Lecturers

ROSE, LAURA, Ph.D., University of Maryland - Baltimore County; Applied Developmental Psychology.


ABOD, ELISSA, Ph.D., George Mason University; Industrial/Organizational Psychology.
ANDERSON, ROBERT, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Clinical Psychology.
ETOPIO, AUBREY, Ph.D., University of Nevada, Reno; Social Psychology.
EVANS, SHARIECE, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Public Policy/Health Policy.
KNIGHT, DONALD E., Western Michigan University; Counseling Psychology
SHIPLETT, ANGELA KATENKAMP, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Applied Developmental Psychology.

Professor Emeritus

BAKER, LINDA, Ph.D., Rutgers University; Cognitive development and education.
CATANIA, A. CHARLES, Ph.D., Harvard University; Learning, verbal behavior, behavior analysis.
DEMOREST, MARILYN E., Ph.D., The Johns Hopkins University; Measurement, statistics, data analysis.
DICLEMENTE, CARLO, Ph.D., University of Rhode Island; Addictive behaviors, psychotherapy, self-efficacy.
FELDSTEIN, STANLEY, Ph.D., Columbia University; Non-verbal behavior, clinical psychology.
MATON, KENNETH, Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; Community psychology.
RABIN, BERNARD M., Ph.D., State University of New York, Buffalo; Physiological psychology.
SIEGMAN, ARON W., Ph.D., Columbia University; Behavioral medicine.

Associate Professor Emeritus

DELUTY*, ROBERT H., Ph.D., State University of New York, Buffalo; Clinical psychology.
(*The Graduate School, Dean’s Office)
METZGER, MARY ANN, Ph.D., University of Connecticut; Developmental and mathematical psychology, nonlinear dynamics in psychology.

Adjunct Professor Emeritus

BLACK, MAUREEN, Ph.D., Emory University; Child psychology.

Adjunct Professors

BORNSTEIN, MARC, Ph.D., Yale University.
CATALDO, MICHAEL F., Ph.D., University of Kansas, Lawrence; Applied behavior analysis.
CHAVIS, DAVID, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University; Community Psychology.
HAGOPIAN, LOUIS, Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University; Applied behavior analysis, severe behavioral disorders, anxiety disorders.
HUSSEY-GARDNER, BRENDA, Ph.D., University of Maryland, College Park; Early-childhood special education.
SCHIFFMAN, JASON, Ph.D., University of Southern California; Schizophrenia.
SCHOENBAUM, GEOFFREY, Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Neurobiology.
SLIFER, KEITH, Ph.D., Florida State University; Applied behavior analysis.
SOLLERS, III, JOHN J., Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia; Experimental psychology.
TEPPER, VICKI J., Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore; Pediatrics Psychology.
ZONDERMAN, ALAN, Ph.D., University of Colorado; Psychology.

Adjunct Associate Professors

HOOVER, SHARON, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Clinical Psychology.
KATZEL, LESLIE, M.D., Ph.D., The Johns Hopkins University; Geriatrics.
KURTZ, PATRICIA, Ph.D., Claremont Graduate School; Psychology.
MANIAN, NANMATHI, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison; Developmental Psychology.
REEVES, GLORIA, M.D., University of Maryland School of Medicine; Child Psychiatry.
ROWLAND, LAURA, Ph.D., University of New Mexico; Experimental Psychology (Behavioral Neuroscience)
SCHAEFFER, CINDY, Ph.D., University of Missouri; Multisystemic Family Therapy.

Adjunct Assistant Professors

BORRERO, CARRIE, Ph.D., University of Florida; Experimental Analysis of Behavior.
BOWMAN, LYNN, MA. Hollins University; Experimental Psychology.
JORDAN-GREEN, LISA, Ph.D., Michigan State University; Substance abuse treatment and prevention.
RESTA, PETER, Ph.D., University of Maryland, College Park; Human Development, Social Psychology.
WENDELL, CARRINGTON, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
ZWART, CHERYL, Ph.D., State University of New York, Binghamton; Clinical psychology.

Affiliate Professor

BERGE, ZANE, Ph.D., Michigan State University; Educational Systems Development.

Affiliate Associate Professors

TING, LAURA, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore; Social Work.

Affiliate Assistant Professor

BIRO, SUSAN, Ph.D., Widener University; Leadership in Higher Education.
HARRISON, JENNIFER, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Language, Literacy, and Culture
HAWKEN, MARIANN, Ph.D., University of Maryland, Global Campus; Management
ROBINSON, THOMAS (Joint with Africana Studies), Ph.D., Howard University; personality and physiological psychology.

Program Description

The field of Applied Developmental Psychology reflects the intersection of developmental psychology and applied science by considering questions of developmental import within the social context of children’s everyday lives. Some of the themes addressed within Applied Developmental Psychology include: 1) the reciprocal influence of culture, neighborhoods, school climate, and families on children’s social and cognitive development, 2) the complexity of public health concerns such as living in poverty, teen parenthood, and learning to read, and 3) developing interventions and assessments based on developmental theory.

Graduates from the Applied Developmental Psychology program will have received a strong foundation in developmental psychology. In addition, through taking courses in methods and statistics and engaging in research, students will have acquired the analytic tools to design studies addressing important research questions, analyze and interpret their findings and disseminate these findings to others. Completing courses in policy, prevention and/or intervention as well as practica will enable students to begin to understand how to address societal problems. The ADP program recognizes the need for a multi-disciplinary focus on real-world, substantive problems and for first-hand familiarity with the tasks children face as they grow, with the environments that surround them, and with the practicalities of intervention in the real world. Consequently, the program includes an emphasis on in-depth practicum experiences in addition to the more traditional classroom-based means of learning.

Topics of current research interest to faculty in the program include the role of parenting, parental beliefs, and family emotional climate in fostering children’s cognitive and social growth; the social, emotional, and cognitive/educational development of children in different socio-cultural contexts; the training and support of early intervention providers; young children’s peer conflicts; the effects of educational innovations such as the use of the internet; environmental predictors of child-parent relationships and early sibling and peer relationships; the processes involved in children’s learning and reading, writing and arithmetic; the role of motivational and affective factors in cognitive development and academic achievement; the influence on child development of sociocultural variables such as modes of caregiving, and child and family social policy. Much of the ongoing research involves children with learning problems; children with behavioral or emotional disturbances; adolescent mothers and their children, children from racial/ethnic minority or low-income backgrounds, and immigrant children.

The program is designed to prepare its graduates for careers as practitioner researchers, people concerned with the design, evaluation, and improvement of effective ways of enhancing the quality of human life. Although many of the opportunities for this kind of career are likely to be found in close association with existing health and education services, the roles of an applied developmental psychologist are more varied than those of a school psychologist or therapist and generally are likely to be more innovative. Students enrolled in the program develop, in consultation with their advisor, a program of course work, research, and practicum experiences tailored to the demands of their career aspirations that builds on and complements their previous studies and work experiences. Interested students can also obtain teaching experiences relevant for pursuing an academic career.

The program has strength in three areas. Students can specialize in one of these areas or tailor a program that combines elements from more than one area.

The Early Development/Early Intervention concentration focuses on genetic, biological, and environmental factors that impede and promote development in the early years, and on established and innovative intervention approaches for infants and young children at risk. Students specializing in this area will be prepared to conduct and supervise research on factors that affect development in infancy and early childhood, and to develop, tailor, and evaluate intervention programs designed to foster development. Students will also be trained in the assessment of cognitive, socioemotional, and linguistic development of infants, toddlers, and children, and parent-child relationships. They will be prepared to work in interdisciplinary settings to evaluate young children and their families, to assist in formulating intervention plans to promote development, and to facilitate parenting in families at risk. Graduates with this concentration may opt for careers in academia, research and program evaluation institutes, child development and pediatric settings, social policy/child advocacy organization, government, and foundations or in other contexts concerned with the development and welfare of infants, young children, and their families.

The Socioemotional Development of Individuals within and across cultures concentration focuses on the interactions between individual, peer, and parenting/family factors in the social emotional development of individuals in different socio-cultural contexts. Students specializing in this area will be prepared to conduct and supervise research on factors that affect the social emotional development of individuals from not only ethnic minority and immigrant families in the U.S. but also families in different cultures around the world.

The Educational Contexts of Development concentration focuses on the cognitive, social, and motivational factors that impact on different aspects of individual’s learning. Topics of interest range from cognitive/academic content, such as literacy and mathematics, to socialization of cognitive skills, such as the impact of parents, teachers, and peers as socialization agents, to the effects of educational interventions on students’ outcomes. Students specializing in this area will learn about the effects of families, neighborhoods, and cultural contexts on individual’s learning, and about individual differences, such as learning and developmental disabilities. Graduates with this area of emphasis may pursue careers in academia and/or in settings to assess individuals for learning difficulties and other developmental disabilities, to collaborate with schools and school systems to evaluate the efficacy of different educational programs, and to design individual and group interventions. They will also be prepared to work in educational and social policy settings to help interpret research findings and translate research results into relevant policy. As well, they can work in government settings to help formulate policy about educational issues.

Program Admission Requirements

Admission to the program is based on a review by the admissions committee of each applicant’s complete profile, including the applicant’s grade point average in the baccalaureate degree; performance in relevant courses of study; stated goals (personal, career and research); evaluation by referees; relevant research and practical experience; maturity; and identification of an area of research interest compatible with the research interests and competence of the program’s faculty.

Applicants must have at least a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and a B average, or 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Full-time enrollment is the standard in the ADP program, but on rare occasions, students will be accepted on a part-time basis. For information on applying to the ADP Ph.D. program, please visit:

Facilities and Special Resources

In addition to the department’s well-equipped laboratories in development and educational contexts, interpersonal communications, learning, cardiovascular psycho-physiology, addictive behaviors, child health psychology, relationship analysis, domestic violence, social development, culture, child and adolescent development, organizational behavioral management and community and applied social psychology, the department is able to draw upon the rich research and applied training resources found in the Baltimore-Washington corridor, especially in the Greater Baltimore area. Prominent among these are the Walter P. Carter Center, the University of Maryland Medical School, the Gerontology Research Center of the National Institute on Aging, the Kennedy Krieger Institute, the Laboratory of Psychology and Psychopathology of the National Institute of Mental Health, Mount Washington Pediatric Hospital, Children’s National Hospital, the Clifton T. Perkins Hospital, the Chase-Brexton Clinic and the Springfield and Spring Grove hospital centers.

Outplacement Success

Recent graduates from our ADP and HSP programs have found initial career placements in a variety of settings that involve psychological services, teaching and research. About 30 percent have moved into direct service provision in private-practice settings. The majority have found employment in various local, state and federal agencies including VA Centers and in medical university settings as staff psychologists, research associates and assistant professors.

Financial Assistance

Financial assistance is available in the form of teaching assistantships and research assistantships.


    Doctor of Philosophy



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