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Faculty Research

Below is a list of faculty and graduate students whose work explicitly speaks to understanding diversity and culture, promotes social justice and/or applies psychological theories to marginalized populations. This includes research and related activities focused on stigma, discrimination, health disparities, and social and environmental context as they affect under served populations.

Jasmine Abrams

Danielle L. Beatty Moody

Anne Brodsky

Charissa Cheah

Nicole Else-Quest

Bronwyn Hunter

Kenneth Maton

Raimi Quiton

David Schultz

Susan Sonnenschein

Shari Waldstein


Jasmine Abrams:  Racial/ethnic/cultural factors as they relate to health, and global health

My work is grounded in investigating the etiology, prevention, and treatment of health disparities (i.e., HIV/AIDS and cardiovascular disease) experienced by marginalized individuals, with a special focus on persons of African ancestry and women. The common thread that weaves my work together is an emphasis on underserved communities and psycho-socio-cultural influences on health, including culture, identity, and the intersection of socially constructed identities. Current and previous projects can be categorized into three separate but overlapping areas of research and intervention programming: women’s health, global health, and psycho-socio-cultural influences on health. Global health projects encompass health promotion research and interventions in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, South Africa, and Brazil.

*The material above is from Dr. Abram’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/Abrams/

Abrams, J. A., Javier, S. J., Maxwell, M. L., Nguyen, A., & Belgrave, F. Z. (2015). Distant but relative: Similarities and differences between gender role beliefs of Vietnamese American and African American women. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology.

Belgrave, F.Z., Abrams, J. A., Hood, K. B., & Paige, M. (2015). The development and validation of a measure of African American women’s gender role beliefs. Journal of Black Psychology,doi: 0.1177/0095798415576614.

Abrams, J. A., Maxwell, M. L., Pope, M., & Belgrave, F. Z. (2014). Carrying the World with the Grace of a Lady and the Grit of a Warrior: Deepening Our Understanding of the “Strong Black Woman.”Psychology of Women Quarterly, 38(4), 503-518.


Danielle L. Beatty Moody:  Early life social disadvantage, discrimination, and socioeconomic status as related to racial/ethnic disparities in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular endpoints across the lifespan.

Dr. Beatty Moody is Director of The Social Determinants of Health Inequities Lab (SoDHI). The SoDHI Lab seeks to identify and ameliorate pathophysiological linkages of psychosocial and environmental factors to cardiovascular and cerebrovascular endpoints across the life course, particularly in racial/ethnic minorities for which health disparities are disproportionately observed. To investigate these endpoints, our work uses Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) of the brain along with ambulatory methodologies such as ambulatory blood pressure assessment, actigraphy (to assess sleep), and heart rate variability. The SoDHI lab explores early life social disadvantage, socioeconomic status, and varying forms of discrimination (e.g., everyday, lifetime, and racism/ethnic/racial discrimination) as correlates of health disparities. We also collaborate with the Healthy Aging in Neighborhoods of Diversity across the Life Span (HANDLS) study group at the National Institute on Aging (see https:/handls.nih.gov).

*The material above is from Dr. Beatty Moody’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/beatty/

Waldstein, S.R., Beatty Moody, D.L., McNeely, J.M., Allen, A.J., Sprung, M.R., Shah, M.T., Al-Najjar, E., Evans, M.K., & Zonderman, A.B. (2016). Relations of race and poverty status to cardiovascular risk factors in the Healthy Aging in Neighborhoods of Diversity across the Life Span (HANDLS) study. BMC Public Health, 16, 258. doi: 10.1186/s12889-016-2945-9.

Beatty Moody, D.L., Waldstein, S.R., Tobin, J.N., Cassells, A., Schwartz, J.C., & Brondolo, E. (2016). Lifetime racial/ethnic discrimination and ambulatory blood pressure: The moderating effect of age. Health Psychology, 35(4), p.333. 

Beatty Moody, D.L., Brown, C., Matthews, K.A., & Bromberger, J.T. (2014). Everyday discrimination prospectively predicts inflammation across 7‐Years in racially diverse midlife women: Study of Women’s Health across the Nation. Journal of Social Issues, 70(2), p.298.

Beatty, D.L., Kamarck, T.W., Matthews, K.A., & Schiffman, S.S. (2011). Childhood socioeconomic status is associated with psychosocial resources in African Americans: The Pittsburgh Healthy Heart Project. Health Psychology. Health Psychology, 30(4), p.472.

Beatty, D.L., Hall, M.H., Kamarck, T.A., Buysse, D.J., Owens, J.F., Reis, S.E., Mezick, E.J., Strollo, P.J., & Matthews, K.A. (2011). Unfair treatment is associated with poor sleep in African American and Caucasian adults: Pittsburgh SleepSCORE project. Health Psychology, 30(3), p.351.


Anne Brodsky:   qualitative methods, resilience, culture, gender, and community.

My work focuses on individual and community level resilience and the role of communities, psychological community, and cultures in creating and resisting societal risks, including community violence, poverty, racism, sexism and other oppressions.  Using qualitative methods, I have explored resilient processes in diverse populations, including single mothers raising children in risky neighborhoods of Washington, DC; low income women in a holistic job training and education program in Baltimore, MD; Afghan women in pre and post-Taliban Afghanistan, and most recently the experiences, attitudes, and interactions of immigrant and nonimmigrant communities in the Baltimore/Washington corridor and in Italy.

*The material above is from Dr. Brodsky’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/brodsky/

Buckingham, S.L. & Brodsky, A.E. (2015). ‘Our differences don’t separate us’: Immigrant families navigate intrafamilial acculturation gaps through diverse resilience processes. Journal of Latino/a Psychology, 3(3), 143-159.

Brodsky, A.E. & Cattaneo, L.B. (2013).  A transconceptual model of empowerment and resilience: Divergence, convergence, and interactions in kindred community concepts. American Journal of Community Psychology, 52(3/4), 333-346. 10.1007/s10464-013-9599-x

Brodsky, A.E.Talwar, G., Welsh, E., Scheibler, J., Backer, P., Portnoy, G., Carrillo, A., & Kline, E. (2012).  The hope in her eyes: The role of children in Afghan women’s resilience.  American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 82(3), 358-366.


Charissa Cheah:  Culture, socialization processes, and child and adolescent development.

How different aspects of culture (e.g. socio-cultural context, beliefs and values, majority versus minority status, immigration experiences) impact socialization processes and child and adolescent development.  More specifically, to understand: (1) the interactions between child individual characteristics (e.g. temperamental dispositions) and parenting in predicting children’s social, emotional, and physical health development; and (2) parenting cognitions and behaviors and their associations with child and adolescent adjustment within and across different cultural contexts.

*The material above is from Dr. Cheah’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on  http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/cheah/

Cheah, C. S. L., Li, J., Zhou, N., Yakamoto, Y. & Leung, C. Y. Y. (in press). Chinese and European American mothers’ conceptions of warmth. Developmental Psychology.

Yu, J., Cheah, C. S. L., Hart, C. H., Sun, S., & Olsen, J. A. (2015).  Confirming the multidimensionality of psychologically controlling practices among Chinese-American mothers: Love withdrawal, guilt induction, and shaming. International Journal of Behavioral Development. DOI: 10.1177/0165025414562238

Cheah, C. S. L., Leung, C. Y. Y., & Zhou, N. (2013). Understanding “tiger parenting” through the perceptions of Chinese immigrant mothers: Can Chinese and U.S. parenting coexist? Asian American Journal of Psychology4(1), 30-40. doi:10.1037/a0031217


Nicole Else-QuestGender development, ethnicity, intersectionality, financial well-being

Research in my lab uses an intersectional approach to examine gender development, self-conscious affect, financial well-being, and STEM attitudes and achievement. Much of this research examines how the internalization of stereotypes shape self-conscious affect about our achievement, our bodies, and our selves.  I use multiple methods – including longitudinal studies, meta-analysis, behavioral observations and surveys – in my research.  With my longitudinal study, the Philadelphia Adolescent Life Study, my students and I explored variations in attitudes about academics and gender roles, as well as the parental socialization of ethnic identity, at the intersection of gender and ethnicity.  Current work explores variations in socialization practices and attitudes about money and personal finance, as well as a study on the effects of diversity coursework on implicit and explicit attitudes about women and older adults.

Else-Quest, N. M., & Hyde, J. S.  (in press).  Methods for the analysis of intersectionality in psychology: II.  Quantitative methods. Psychology of Women Quarterly.

Else-Quest, N. M., & Hyde, J. S.  (2016). Methods for the analysis of intersectionality in psychology: I.  Theoretical and epistemological issues. Psychology of Women Quarterly.  Advance online publication.  doi:10.1177/0361684316629797.

Else-Quest, N. M., & Morse, E. (2015).  Parental ethnic socialization and adolescent ethnic identity among four ethnic groups.  Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 21, 54-64.

Else-Quest, N. M., Mineo, C. C., & Higgins, A.  (2013). Math and science attitudes and achievement at the intersection of gender and ethnicity.  Psychology of Women Quarterly, 37, 293-309.

Else-Quest, N. M., Higgins, A., Allison, C., & Morton, L. C.  (2012). Gender differences in self-conscious emotional experience: A meta-analysis.  Psychological Bulletin, 138, 947-981.

*The material above is from Dr. Else-Quest’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on  http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/else-quest/


Bronwyn Hunter: Prisoner re-entry and reintegration, stigma, health, well-being, substance abuse

My research program identifies factors that promote successful prisoner re-entry and reintegration by examining stigma, health, and well-being among individuals with criminal justice and substance abuse histories. Specifically, I focus on: 1) the relationship between stigma, stigma management, and health- related outcomes for individuals transitioning from prison to the community; and 2) program development and evaluation to improve health and well-being for women who have been involved in the criminal justice system. I am particularly interested in using participatory methods to develop university-community partnerships to effect individual, community, and policy change.

*The material above is from Dr. Hunter’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/Hunter/

Hunter, B. A., Lanza, A. S., Lawlor, M., Dyson, W. & Gordon, D. M. (in press). A strengths-based approach to prisoner reentry: The Fresh Start prisoner reentry program. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology. doi: 10.1177/0306624X15576501.

Hunter, B. A., Jason, L. A. & Keys, C. B. (2013). Factors of empowerment for women in recovery from substance use. American Journal of Community Psychology, 51(1/2), 91-102. doi: 10.1007/s10464-012-9499-5.

Hunter, B. A., Robison, E. & Jason, L. A. (2012). Characteristics of sexual assault and disclosure among women in substance abuse recovery homes. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 27(3), 2627-2644. doi: 10.1177/0886260512436389.


Kenneth Maton: Minority student achievement, program evaluation, social policy.

Minority student achievement (ongoing evaluation and implementation assessment of the Meyerhoff Scholars Program; STEM BUILD at UMBC; Lakeland Elementary/Middle School initiative).  Applied psychology and social policy (national study of psychologists seeking to influence social policy). Police-student relationships in Baltimore City.

*The material above is from Dr. Maton’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on  http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/maton/

Maton, K.I. (2016).  Influencing social policy: Applied psychology serving the public interest. New York: Oxford University Press.

Maton, K.I. Pollard, S.A., Weise, T.V.M., & Hrabowski, F.A. III.  (2012). The Meyerhoff Scholars Program:  A strengths-based, institution-wide approach to increasing diversity in STEM. Mt. Sinai Journal of Medicine, 79, 610-623.

Maton, K.I., Wimms, H.E., Grant, S.K., Wittig, M.A., Rogers, M.R., & Vasquez, M.J.T. (2011).  Experiences and perspectives of African American, Latina/o, Asian American, and European American psychology graduate students: A national study. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 17, 68-78.


Raimi Quiton: Pain disparities based on race, gender, socioeconomic status, and age

The Quiton Lab has ongoing projects investigating biopsychosocial factors that affect pain perception and the underlying neurobiological mechanisms by which these factors influence pain processing in the brain.  Our goal is to better understand the combination of factors that contribute to an individual’s risk for developing chronic pain.  Current projects focus on biological factors such as sex and age; psychological factors such as optimism and emotion regulation; and sociocultural factors such as social isolation, ethnic identity, and discrimination.  We use a combination of psychophysical techniques and brain imaging in healthy human participants in our research. We are also currently conducting brain imaging studies in clinical populations to examine neurobiological mechanisms underlying pain disparities; these include migraine patients, who are predominantly female, and individuals with PTSD, who are predominantly African American and female, and are at increased risk of developing comorbid chronic pain disorders. Our lab is committed to intellectual, cultural, and ethnic diversity and welcomes students of diverse backgrounds, interests, and viewpoints

*The material above is from Dr. Quiton’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/quiton/

Raimi QuitonPain disparities based on race, gender, socioeconomic status, and age

Quiton, RL, Keaser MK, Zhuo J, Gullapalli RP, Greenspan JD. 2014. Intersession reliability of fMRI activation for heat pain and motor tasks.  NeuroImage Clinical 5: 309-321.

Quiton, R.L., Masri, R., Thompson, S.M., Keller, A. 2010. Abnormal activity of primary somatosensory cortex in central pain syndrome. Journal of Neurophysiology 104(3): 1717-25.

Quiton, R.L. and Greenspan, J.D.  2007.  Sex differences in endogenous pain modulation by distracting and painful conditioning stimulation.  Pain 132 Suppl 1:S134-49


David SchultzResearch and intervention with high needs families, home visiting, Head Start

Dr. David Schultz focuses his research and intervention work on high needs families, particularly families with limited financial resources. He is assistant director of the UMBC Home Visiting Training and Certificate program, which provides training for professionals who work with high needs families with newborns across the state of Maryland. This training focuses on developing these professionals’ understanding and skills in communicating effectively, cultural sensitivity, promoting healthy relationships and parenting, and effectively identifying and referring for mental health and substance use concerns. He also has worked for many years with Baltimore City Head Start preschool centers, both implementing a classroom-based social skills curriculum a colleague and he developed and conducting research on the development of social thinking tendencies that leave young children from financially-disadvantaged homes at risk for peer difficulties.

Schultz, D., Grodack, A., & Izard, C. E. (in press). State and trait anger, fear, and social information processing. In M. Potegal (Ed.) Handbook of Anger. New York: Springer.

Schultz, D., Izard, C. E., & Ackerman, B. P. (2000). Children’s anger attribution biases: Relations to family environment and social adjustment. Social Development, 9, 284-301.

Schultz, D., & Shaw, D. S. (2003). Boys’ maladaptive social information processing, family emotional climate, and pathways to early conduct problems. Social Development, 12, 440-460.


Susan Sonnenschein:  Educational/cognitive development of children, SES, ethnicity

My research addresses ways to promote the academic success of children from diverse (race/ethnicity, SES, linguistic) backgrounds.  Although my research considers home and school factors, I am particularly interested in how parental beliefs and practices are associated with children’s academic development.

*The material above is from Dr. Sonnenschein’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/sonnenschein/

Sonnenschein, S., & Galindo, C. (2015). Race/ethnicity and initial math skills:  Relations between home, classroom, and math achievement. The Journal of Educational Research, 108, 261-277.

Sonnenschein, S., Thompson, J. A., Metzger, S. R., & Baker, L. (2013). Relations between preschool teachers’ language and gains in low income English language learners’ and English speakers’ vocabulary, early literacy and math skills.NHSA Dialog: A Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Childhood Field, 16, 64-87.

Sonnenschein, S., Baker, L., & Serpell, R. (2010). The Early Childhood Project: A 5-year longitudinal investigation of children’s literacy development in sociocultural context. In D. Aram, & O. Korat (Eds.),Literacy: Development and enhancement across orthographies and cultures (pp.85-96). NY: Springer.sonnenschein, baker, & serpell 2010


Shari Waldstein: race, SES, health disparities in brain, neurocognitive, & cardiovascular outcomes

Our lab examines disparities in brain, neurocognitive, and cardiovascular health outcomes associated with race and socioeconomic status and their biological, psychosocial, psychophysiological and environmental mediators. We collaborate closely with the Healthy Aging in Neighborhoods of Diversity across the Life Span (HANDLS) study investigative team at the National Institute on Aging’s Intramural Research Program (see https:/handls.nih.gov)

*The material above is from Dr. Waldstein’s faculty page on the department website. For further information click on http://psychology.umbc.edu/people/corefaculty/waldstein/

Waldstein, S.R., Beatty Moody, D.L., McNeely, J.M., Allen, A.J., Sprung, M.R., Shah, M.T., Al-Najjar, E., Evans, M.K., & Zonderman, A.B. (2016) Relations of race and poverty status to cardiovascular risk factors in the Healthy Aging in Neighborhoods of Diversity across the Life Span (HANDLS) study. BMC Public Health, 16, 258. doi: 10.1186/s12889-016-2945-9.

Dore, G.A., Waldstein, S.R., Evans, M.K, & Zonderman, A.B. (2015).  Diabetes and cognitive

function in the HANDLS study: Moderation by race and poverty status. Psychosomatic Medicine, 77, 643-652, doi: 10.1097/PSY.0000000000000196.

Cooper, D.C., Thayer, J.F., & Waldstein, S.R. (2014). Coping with racism: the impact of prayer on cardiovascular reactivity and post-stress recovery in African American women. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 47, 218-230, doi: 10.1007/s12160-013-9540-4.