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Services for At-Risk Youth & Families (SAYF) Research Laboratory

Degree Programs

SAYF Research Lab

Current Projects

Life Skills/Life Story: Development and Testing of a Treatment for Adolescents Exposed to Trauma

Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation (STAIR; Cloitre, Cohen, & Koenen, 2006) is an empirically supported treatment that has been tested in several randomized controlled clinical trials of adults with PTSD. The current study utilizes a multiple baseline design to examine the effectiveness and acceptability of an adapted version of STAIR for adolescents (age 14-17). This adapted version of STAIR, Life Skills/Life Story, is an 11-session transdiagnostic treatment designed to address the needs of adolescent males and females presenting with co-occurring PTSD, internalizing, and externalizing problems related to trauma exposure. Click the link below for information about participating in this study. Learn More

Reducing Disparities in Unmet Mental Health Need for Latino Youths

Latino children and adolescents in Colorado and across the nation are at significant risk of having unmet mental health needs relative to non-Hispanic white youths. Although such racial/ethnic disparities are well-documented, less is known about the practical, attitudinal, cultural, and systemic factors that likely contribute to these disparities. Conducted in partnership with the Colorado Department of Human Services, this project aims to (1) capitalize on the knowledge of relevant stakeholders to understand the factors that influence disparities and (2) to translate this knowledge into effective models for reducing disparities in unmet mental health need.

Adjustment of Children in Contact with the Child Welfare System

Children who come to the attention of the child welfare system are at heightened risk of developing a range of negative psychological, social, academic, and health outcomes. Using data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW), we are conducting a series of studies to answer fundamental questions about the adjustment of these children. For example, one study explores how the relationship between caregiver and child may protect children’s mental health over time, and how this relationship may in turn reduce placement instability for youth. Ongoing studies examine racial/ethnic disparities in mental health service use as well as mental health and academic trajectories of children in the child welfare system.