Anne P. DePrince
Associate Professor, Clinical Child and DCN
My research focuses on the relationship between trauma, emotion, cognition, and posttraumatic distress (e.g., PTSD, dissociation) within a developmental psychopathology framework. My research draws on multiple methodologies (e.g., laboratory cognitive tasks, clinical interviews, survey methodology), as well as theories from diverse psychological perspectives. I am interested in research with children, adolescents and adults.
Broadly speaking, my research focuses on 4 main themes:
Appraisals and Trauma Exposure. In this line of research, we examine how the types of appraisals people make in response to traumas relate to distress. Over the last few years, we have been developing a measure of posttraumatic appraisals, guided by the narratives of trauma survivors. We are now using this self-report measure to explore appraisal processes in relation to trauma exposure history and distress.
Trauma Exposure and Cognition. In this line of research, we examine how trauma exposure and distress relate to information processing - from attention and memory to social cognition. For example, our empirical work on dissociation has focused on cognitive correlates, with several studies pointing to interactions between dissociation and attention. More recently, we have been asking questions regarding how attention processes relate to trauma-exposure more generally. In several studies, we are now examining how executive function (EF) processes relate to some of the challenges faced by children and adults exposed to violence.
Building on our interests in attention and EFs, Dr. Stephen Shirk and I are collaborating to evaluate a modified CBT for depressed adolescents exposed to interpersonal trauma. Treatment modifications will include interventions targeting EF (e.g., attention control training, mindfulness-based cognitive interventions) and specific trauma-related appraisals.
Revictimization and Intimate Partner Violence. In this line of research, we examine why people exposed to violence early in life at risk for later exposure. Why is revictimization associated with serious health consequences? Victimization (and revictimization) is an interpersonal process in which one human being engages in violence against another. While the responsibility necessarily lies with the perpetrator, our recent work has sought to identify disruptions in the typical processing of interpersonal information that may be relevant to understanding revictimization. We are particularly interested in identifying factors that predict revictimization to create opportunities to augment intervention programs. To that end, we are collaborating with system- and community-based partners (e.g., Denver Police Department, Denver City and District Attorneys' Offices, SafeHouse Denver) to test predictors of revictimization and innovative interventions.
Ethics in Trauma Research. We are interested in how participants perceive trauma-related research. Studies of trauma research participants have demonstrated favorable benefit-to-cost ratios across a range of sample (e.g., undergraduate, community, and inpatient participants) and trauma-exposure (e.g., from serious injuries to interpersonal violence) types. Absent in this literature, though, are studies focusing on the minimal risk standard; factors that predict perceptions of benefits; and methodological influences on perceptions. Further, little research has been done to examine children's perceptions of research. Our research on ethics in research targets these gaps in the literature.
Graduate and undergraduate students are involved at all stages of this research program. For more information about our research, students, and teaching, please visit mysite.du.edu/~adeprinc.
DePrince, A.P., Chu, A., & Combs, M. (in press). Trauma-related predictors of deontic reasoning: A pilot study in a community sample of children. Child Abuse and Neglect: The International Journal.
Chu, A.T., DePrince, A.P., & Weinzierl, K.M. (2008). Children's perception of research participation: Examining trauma exposure and distress. Journal of Empirical Research in Human Research Ethics, 3, 49-58.
DePrince, A.P. & Chu, A.T. (2008). Perceived benefits in trauma research: Examining methodological and individual difference factors in responses to research participation. Journal of Experimental Research on Human Research Ethics, 18, 218-219.
DePrince, A.P. & Cromer, L.D. (Eds.) (2006). Exploring Dissociation: Definitions, Development, and Cognitive Correlates. New York: Haworth Press. Published simultaneously as a Special Issue of the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation and as a Haworth book.
DePrince, A.P., Chu, A., & Visvanathan, P. (2006). Dissociation and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD Research Quarterly, 17(1).
DePrince, A.P. (2005). Social cognition and revictimization risk. Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 6, 125-141.
DePrince, A.P. & Freyd, J.J. (2004). Forgetting trauma stimuli. Psychological Science, 15, 488-492.
Anne P. Deprince
University of Oregon
Clinical Child and DCN
office: Frontier Hall,
Traumatic Stress Studies Lab
Stress Research Network