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V. Mark Durand

V. Mark Durand ranked among top psychology professors in Florida

USF St. Petersburg Psychology Professor V. Mark Durand, Ph.D., has been ranked among the top 25 psychology professors in Florida.

Durand was chosen by StateStats.org because of his expertise in autism spectrum disorder, said Wes Ricketts, vice president of the college resource Web site.

The list grew out of a previous ranking of top colleges. “Our readers immediately expressed interest in learning more about the faculties that make up those schools, so we obliged,” Ricketts said. The list was developed for and published by OnlineScoolsFlorida.com and is based on awards given in the past year.

“I am honored to be included on a list with so many distinguished colleagues from across the state,” Durand said.

Norine Noonan, Ph.D., vice chancellor for academic affairs, said the ranking highlights the quality of the faculty at USF St. Petersburg. “We are fortunate to have Mark on our faculty and I am so pleased that he continues to be recognized for his path-breaking work and the positive impact it has on families.” she said.

Durand is co-editor of the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, author of 100 research publications and 10 books, including abnormal psychology textbooks used at more than 1,000 universities worldwide. Major themes of his research are the assessment and treatment of severe behavior problems for children and adults with ASD and other severe disabilities, parent training and the development of treatments for child sleep problems.

His most recent book is the award-winning Optimistic Parenting: Hope and Help for You and Your Challenging Child, a guide for parents and caregivers of children with ASD. A new book, Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Concise Clinical Guide, will be published by the American Psychological Association this fall.

Internal Awards Program faculty grants announced, totalling nearly $80,000

Nearly $80,000 has been awarded to 10 USF St. Petersburg faculty members through the 2012 Internal Awards Program, Interim Regional Chancellor Bill Hogarth announced Friday.

The program provides “seed money” through a competitive process. The money allows faculty members to lay the groundwork for proposals to external sponsors such as federal and state agencies.

Nearly two dozen faculty members applied.  Each applicant was asked to explain the impact of the proposed project and identify sources of future funding. The USFSP Research Council reviewed the applications and recommended those it deemed worthy of funding.  Dr. Hogarth awarded the grants based on those recommendations, along with input from Norine Noonan, regional vice chancellor for academic affairs.

Seven awards were in the College of Arts and Sciences, two in the College of Business and one in the College of Education, totaling $79,270.

“The awards underscore the quality and scope of research underway at USF St. Petersburg,’’ said Dr. Hogarth. “I hope this program will help provide the momentum to continue the progress we have seen in the past four years, when research funding has grown from $800,000 to $6 million. I am very proud of our faculty and the research they are conducting, which benefits students and the community.”

Here is a list of the awards by college:

College of Arts and Sciences

  • Henry Alegria, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Chemistry, $8,000, Assessing the Impact of Sewage Discharge from Caye Caulker on the Belize Barrier Reef – Application of the FORAM Index.
  • Susan F. Allen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Social Work, $7,855, A Study of Factors that Affect Birth Mothers’ Adoption Plans in Private Adoptions.
  • Tiffany Chenneville, Ph.D., Associated Professor of Psychology, $7,892, Perceptions of HIV Criminalization Laws Among College Students.
  • Narciso J. Hidalgo, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Spanish, $7,728, Beyond the Boundaries: Orishas and Babalawos in Mexico and Spain
  • Heather Judkins, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Biological Oceanography, $7,950, Biodiversity Around the Borders.
  • Neil Matthiessen, Assistant Professor of Graphic Design, $7,845, WAAS Gallery Exhibit.
  • James McHale, Professor and Chair of Psychology, $8,000, Perceptions of Parenting Coordination by Parents and Coordinators.

College of Business

  • Zheng (Chris) Chen , Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Management, $8,000, Work-family Role Boundary Management: A Person Identity Perspective.
  • Varol Onur Kayhan, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Information Systems Management, $8,000, Information Privacy: The Effect of Helplessness.

College of Education

  • AnnMarie Alberton Gunn, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Reading and Literacy Studies, $8,000, Building A Culturally Responsible Literacy Pedagogy Through Authentic Texts and Community Engagement.

 

V. Mark Durand

Psychology Professor V. Mark Durand invited to autism conference in Saudi Arabia

USF St. Petersburg Psychology Professor V. Mark Durand, Ph.D., has been invited to participate in an international conference on autism in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Durand, a leading expert on autism spectrum disorder (ASD), is one of only four people from the United States invited to participate in the three-day conference in early February organized by a daughter of King Saud bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud.

“I am honored to be invited to participate in this conference, which will help further the understanding of this complex disorder and its treatment in the Middle East,’’ said Durand, a member of the Professional Advisory Board for the Autism Society of America.

Dr. Norine Noonan, Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, said Durand’s invitation to the conference underscores the quality of research at USFSP. “Our students benefit from being able to learn from such internationally recognized faculty members as Dr. Durand,’’ she said.

Durand is co-editor of the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions and author of 100 research publications and 10 books, including abnormal psychology textbooks used at more than 1,000 universities worldwide. Major themes of his research are the assessment and treatment of severe behavior problems for children and adults with ASD and other severe disabilities, parent training and the development of treatments for child sleep problems.

His most recent book is the award-winning Optimistic Parenting: Hope and Help for You and Your Challenging Child, a guide for parents and caregivers of children with ASD.

Psychology Lecture

Psychology adds two new graduate programs

Psychology, traditionally the most popular major at USF St. Petersburg, is adding two new graduate programs and is now seeking applicants.

A new Master’s Degree in Psychology was developed in response to both student demand and acute needs locally and across Florida, said James McHale, Chair of the USFSP Psychology Department.

“More importantly, a central thrust of our program and of many of our program’s active research faculty is on what psychologists call risk, resilience and prevention,” McHale said.

James McHale, Psychology Department chair

James McHale, Psychology Department chair

“We are beginning to recognize that if we do not intentionally create a systematic and comprehensive strategy for minimizing adverse childhood experiences and for supporting all children and families during the earliest years, there will be long-term costs – to the individual, their families, their communities – and taxpayers. Prevention and early intervention are critical – as is the creation of new knowledge to help foster the resilience of both children and adults, and the capacity to thoughtfully interpret and analyze merits of existing and new programs.”

The best-consideration deadline for applications is Dec. 31. USFSP is also offering GRE Prep courses, with a rebate to students who apply fully by Dec. 31. The prep courses start soon, with the first of four beginning Saturday, Sept. 29.

“We look forward to helping contribute to the health of our region and state through the new M.A. Program, and to welcoming our first cohort of graduate students in August 2013,’’ McHale said. Click here for more information.

Meanwhile, a fully online Graduate Certificate program in Infant-Family Mental Health is now available, with classes beginning in January 2013.

The program was inspired by needs in the region, and by remarkable breakthrough discoveries about infant brain development from birth to age 3 and how early social experiences shape the infrastructure of the brain, McHale said.

“We designed the program to appeal both to recent B.A. graduates who want to develop relevant knowledge and competencies to better qualify for entry-level positions in our region serving infants, toddlers, and their families, and to in-field professionals looking to build their own skills in these areas,’’ McHale said. Because it is fully online, he said, it will also appeal to working professionals and to students from outside Florida.”

No GRE is required for program admission. The best-consideration deadline for applications is Dec. 1, 2012.

Click here to find more information or call (727) 873-4963.