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Thomas Widiger

Research Interests:
Diagnosis and classification of psychopathology

My research interests are concerned generally with the diagnosis and classification of psychopathology. I am more specifically interested in the validity of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV); dimensional models of personality disorder; assessment of personality disorders with self-report inventories, unstructured clinical interviews, and semi-structured clinical interviews; gender biases in the diagnosis of mental disorders; the relationship of personality to psychopathology; and the differentiation of normal from abnormal psychological functioning. I will typically have anywhere from four to five graduate students, and one undergraduate honor’s thesis student, completing either their thesis or dissertation within my lab.

I currently serve as Co-Editor for the Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, and Associate Editor for the  Journal of Personality Disorders and Journal of Abnormal Psychology. In the past I have served as a Co-Chair of the National Institute of Mental Health and American Psychiatric Association Research Planning Conference for the DSM-5 Personality Disorders, and as the Research Coordinator for DSM-IV, helping to develop and monitor the process by which the construction of the diagnostic manual was guided by empirical research. In 2009 I received the Distinguished Scientist Award from the Society for the Science of Clinical Psychology, in 2013 the Joseph Zubin Award from the Society for Research in Psychopathology, and also in 2013 the Senior Investigator Award from the North American Society for the Study of Personality Disorders.

My clinical interests are concerned primarily with the treatment of personality disorders. My theoretical perspective for clinical treatment is guided largely by cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic principles. I also have a strong interest in ethical and legal issues, teaching a course on Ethical Issues in Clinical Psychology and serving in the past as an investigator for the Commonwealth of Kentucky State Board of Psychology.

Finally, it might be important to note that I used to have two cats, Lisa and Charles. Both Lisa and Charles obtained their primary psychological training at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Lisa completed her internship at the University of Florida Medical Center; Charles at Northwestern University Medical Center

Graduate Training

Ph.D. Miami Univ., 1981