Top-ranked Psychology shines at this week’s student mental health conference

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Part of Waterloo’s Thrive Week, the inaugural Virtual Conference on Student Mental Health Research includes discussion and research presentations by students, staff and faculty. Not surprisingly, many presenters are from the Department of Psychology and the Centre for Mental Health Research and Treatment (CMHRT).

In response to recommendations of the President’s Advisory Committee on Student Mental Health, the conference is an opportunity for members of the campus community to share knowledge, research insights and promote mental wellness in a range of areas.

Just ranked number 78 among the world’s top 100 psychology programs by THE World Subject Rankings, Waterloo’s Psychology department demonstrates its teaching and research strength at this week’s conference.

Student and faculty researchers will share their work addressing student well-being during the pandemic, harm reduction, body image, eating disorders, and pandemic impacts on anxiety. On November 5, the research groups present their findings via video adaptations of poster presentations and online Q and A.

Jolie Ho, a student of Professor David Moscovitch, will present her MA research study on individuals with pre-existing social anxiety and the pandemic. “Our results highlight the unique emotional and interpersonal challenges that the pandemic has posed for these high socially-anxious individuals,” Ho says in her video presentation.

The paper co-authored by Ho and Moscovitch based on this study has been submitted for publication. In addition, Ho was recently awarded with one of just two $3,000 Student COVID-19 Research Grants by the Canadian Psychological Association’s Clinical Section. Possibly heading directly into the PhD program in clinical psychology, she will be able to use the funds for her proposed follow-up study.

“Our participation in the conference is linked to the CMHRT’s community outreach and education goals,” Moscovitch said, “and nicely highlights how our doctoral training program supports student activities that link training in clinical practice with research and service.”

Learn about services provided to the community by the CMHRT.

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