Adult Clinical Psychology

The Adult Clinical Specialty is designed to provide students with foundational knowledge in the field of clinical psychology.

About The Adult Clinical Specialty

Faculty research in the adult clinical psychology area at Kent State has three central foci:

Ph.D. Training


Coursework in the Adult Clinical Specialty is designed to provide students with foundational knowledge in the field of clinical psychology. Consequently, students complete the course requirements for the clinical training program. Students seeking to further develop their quantitative skills have the opportunity to participate in our Department's strong quantitative psychology minor

Research Training

Research training is designed to develop students into highly skilled adult clinical psychology scientists. Graduate students are actively involved in research throughout their training. Across faculty members, there is a strong track record of extramural funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).


Students are encouraged to become involved in undergraduate teaching. During the beginning of the 3rd year, students are enrolled in a teaching seminar and, with the supervision of a faculty member, teach one or several undergraduate courses.

Core Faculty

Adult Clinical Faculty

Dr. Yossef S. Ben-Porath - Objective personality assessment with emphasis on the MMPI instruments, including applications in a variety of settings (clinical, correctional, forensic, and pre-employment screening) and computerized adaptive testing.

Dr. Jeffrey Ciesla - The processes and course of depressive disorders.

Dr. Karin Coifman - Emotion processing and emotion regulatory strategies in the development and persistence of psychopathology in stressed populations.

Dr. John Gunstad - Clinical neuropsychology, including the effects of disease on neurocognitive function and environmental factors that adversely impact cognitive function.

Dr. Joel Hughes - The role of psychological and social factors in cardiovascular health and disease.

Dr. William Lechner - Neurocognitive deficits in individuals with Substance Use Disorders, including the study of bi-directional effects of executive function deficits and addictive behaviors.

Dr. Angela Neal-Barnett - Culturally-relevant anxiety interventions, the acting white accusation and ethnic racial identity,  mobile applications for minorities in community settings.

Dr. Mary Beth Spitznagel - Caregiver burden, burden transfer, dementia, wellness, occupational stress and burnout

Psychological Sciences Faculty

Dr. Judith Gere - Studies personality and romantic relationship processes that influence people's self-growth and subjective well-being (i.e., happiness).

Dr. John Updegraff studies cognitive and emotional processes that underlie health, well-being, and adaptation to stress.