Helping Give Away Psychological Science/Speaker Series 2022

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In the spring of 2022, HGAPS had the privilege of hosting 4 speakers covering a range of topics relevant to both undergraduate students and seasoned psychologists thanks to a grant funded by the Student Government Association at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Below we describe each of the talks and provide a link to watch the full talk on YouTube.

Speaker Series Individual Talks[edit | edit source]

Applying to Graduate School in Psychology[edit | edit source]

Presented by Dr. Steve Lee and Dr. Eric Youngstrom

Dr. Steve Lee is a Professor, Director of Clinical Training (DCT), and Chair of the Clinical Psychology training program in the Department of Psychology at UCLA, recognized as one of the best in the world. He is a child clinical psychologist whose program of research characterizes the origins, development, and outcomes of ADHD and externalizing disorders with a particular focus on family factors, temperament, and outcomes such as delinquency and alcohol/substance use disorders. He employs diverse research strategies ranging from observational coding of parent-child interaction to meta-analytic reviews.

Description[edit | edit source]

In the first talk of the Spring 2022 HGAPS Speaker Series, Dr. Lee of UCLA and Dr. Youngstrom of UNC answer student questions about applying to graduate school in psychology. Dr. Lee and Dr. Youngstrom outline their paths towards becoming clinical psychologists and their current research. They also give tips for experiences undergraduates can engage in to help build their resume/CV and discuss taking a gap year between undergrad and graduate school. In this talk, Dr. Lee and Dr. Youngstrom give practical tips to help you navigate applying to graduate school in psychology and what the different career options are in the field. Lastly they answer “Is it too late for me to decide to pursue a career in psychology?”. This first talk in the HGAPS speaker series is perfect for anyone thinking about pursuing a career in psychology.

Watch the YouTube video recording of the talk here.

Making Measures that Matter for Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities[edit | edit source]

Presented by Dr. Tom Fraizer

Dr. Frazier is a licensed clinical psychologist who received his Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University in 2004. He joined Cleveland Clinic in 2006 and from 2013-2017 was the director of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Autism. In 2017, he was hired as the Chief Science Officer at Autism Speaks and is currently a member of the Autism Speaks national board. He is also a Professor of Psychology at John Carroll University. Over the last decade, Dr. Frazier has maintained an active clinical practice and research programs focused on the evaluation and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders and related conditions. He has published more than 120 scientific papers and has ongoing collaborations across the US and internationally. Dr. Frazier’s research has focused on: 1) creating new measures for assessing behavioral strengths and weaknesses in people with autism and related developmental conditions, and 2) improving assessment and our basic understanding of people with genetic syndromes, including PTEN Hamartoma Tumor Syndrome.

Description[edit | edit source]

There is a need for new, free, open-source, online measures of key behavioral and emotional domains relevant to autism and related neurodevelopmental conditions. This presentation focuses on the development of several parent-report scales and webcam-collected patient performance measures. Measures were developed with input from clinician-scientist experts and parent-patient input using both qualitative and quantitative processes. Initial data on the measures suggests that they are reliable and preliminary evidence suggests good construct validity. Key next steps will be the collection of large-sample normative data, widespread dissemination, and building a platform for automated administration and scoring.

Watch the YouTube video recording of the talk here.

Considerations for Optimizing Delivery of Exposure Therapy for Youth with Complex Comorbidities[edit | edit source]

Presented by Dr. Emily Becker-Haimes

Emily M. Becker-Haimes, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Mental Health. She is also the clinical director of the Pediatric Anxiety Treatment Center at Hall Mercer (PATCH) program, which is the only specialty anxiety clinic in Philadelphia dedicated to serving youth in the public mental health system. She is an implementation scientist and clinical psychologist whose work is dedicated to improving mental health service quality in specialty mental health settings for youth. Her research dually focuses on treatment optimization for pediatric anxiety and related disorders and studying how to optimize the implementation of evidence-based treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy into community settings. Clinically, she has expertise in the implementation of exposure therapy across settings and the application of exposure therapy for youth with complex comorbidities. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and a doctoral degree in clinical psychology from the University of Miami. She completed her predoctoral internship at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and postdoctoral fellowship at the Penn Center for Mental Health.

Description[edit | edit source]

Exposure therapy (“exposure”) is the most effective psychosocial treatment ingredient for individuals with anxiety and related disorders but is the least used in practice. Exposure is both simple and hard: while the underlying theory at its core is quite simple (“do hard things gradually and the hard things get easier”), the actual process of implementing exposure is quite complicated. In fact, it is rated by community clinicians as the most difficult cognitive behavioral strategy to deliver. Effectively titrating the dosage of exposure practice while balancing use of other interventions to address complex comorbidities and family systems factors, along with case management strategies, is a real challenge. This webinar will describe how clinicians can leverage principles of exposure theory to guide case conceptualization, using a five-step model of exposure therapy practice that can be integrated with other interventions as needed to best suit clients’ individual needs. Content also will discuss possible contraindications for use of exposure therapy. This webinar is designed for clinicians with a working knowledge of exposure therapy and cognitive behavioral treatments for anxiety and related disorders for youth. Clinicians from all developmental stages are welcome and encouraged to attend to learn about application of exposure therapy for youth with complex clinical presentations.

Watch the YouTube video recording of the talk here.

Public Speaking Without Fear: Best Practices for Academic and Conference Presentation[edit | edit source]

Presented by John Miller, JD

John V. Miller is a licensed attorney in New York State and a clinical psychology research assistant at Helping Give Away Psychological Science (HGAPS) and the Relationship Development Center at Stony Brook University. John attended Adelphi University from 2008-2012 and Harvard Law School from 2012-2015, specializing in negotiation and alternative dispute resolution. He has six years of legal experience in corporate litigation, labor and employment law, trademark litigation, and government investigations practice, as well as two years of experience as training director for the Harvard Mediation Program. In his legal career, he has given presentations and arguments in meetings, classrooms, and hearings, for both clients and courts alike. He is passionate about clinical psychology, mentoring, and teaching cross-disciplinary skills and methods to early career professionals, and wants to give students a solid foundation for effectively presenting their hard work and ideas with less anxiety and more impact.  

Description[edit | edit source]

Fear of public speaking is a highly common anxiety for psychology students from all walks of life.  People often report terror that they'll freeze under pressure, dread about being asked questions they can't answer, or even confusion over how to prepare. But despite the impression that some folks are just not good at speaking in front of people, public speaking is a trainable skill which can be learned, practiced, and mastered. This seminar seeks to address the persistent fears students have around sharing in front of a crowd, refocusing their thinking while providing best practices and techniques that can be used by anyone. The seminar will conclude with an optional opportunity to practice these new skills in a low-stress environment.

Watch the YouTube video recording of the talk here.