JENNIFER M. GILLIS
Associate Professor of Psychology
Ph.D., Binghamton University
Internship: Brown University Clinical Training Consortium
Area: Clinical Psychology
Office: ICD 101A
Professional Societies (Memberships): Association for Behavior Analysis International, Association for Professional Behavior Analysts, and Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy.
Reviewer for Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Research in Developmental Disorders, Cognitive and Behavioral Therapy.
Assessment and treatment issues for individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
I am interested in developing behavioral assessment measures and procedures to assist in clinical practice applied to individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) across the lifespan. To this end, I have recently conducted research highlighting the stigmatization of young adults with ASD and have subsequently developed a new scale to better understand the nature of stigma towards these individuals for use in college populations. This work dovetails with my growing interest in the particular problems (e.g., health behaviors, sexuality, relationships, etc.) faced by individuals with and ASD across the lifespan. For example, within the adolescent ASD population, I am involved in the assessment of ASD characteristics juvenile sex offender population. A proximal goal is to better understand ASD prevalence and ultimately guide the development of treatment plans for these individuals to reduce recidivism.
Another focus of my research is the development and evaluation of interventions for individuals with ASD. In this area, I am especially interested in the effectiveness of interventions delivered in naturalistic settings and addressing factors that might account for differences in delivery of treatment in the community as opposed to laboratory settings. Recently, my lab has completed two group intervention studies that focus on improving social communication skills conducted in a community health setting. The goal of this research is to develop and/or adapt treatment manuals primarily for the improvement of social skills and health behaviors for individuals with ASD.
Philosophy of Graduate Training:
The scientist-practitioner model best describes the training received by graduate students in my lab. My lab is housed in the Institute for Child Development, which provides students with unique opportunities to conduct evidence-based practice with clinical populations that are integrated into their scientific training and overall program of research. In other words, my goal is to train students to become independent researchers and clinicians in an environment that blends science and its application in their daily practice. As such, graduate students exiting my lab will be equipped with skills to apply research and clinical work in multiple settings and systems.
*Ferguson, B., Gillis, J.M., *Sevlever, M. (in press). A brief group intervention using video games to teach sportsmanship skills to children with autism spectrum disorders. Child and Family Behavior Therapy.
LeBlanc, L.A., & Gillis, J.M. (2012). Behavioral interventions in autism. Pediatric Clinics of North America, 59, 147-164.
*Butler, R.C., & Gillis, J.M. (2011). The impact of labels and behaviors on the stigmatization of adults with Asperger's Disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41 (6), 741-749.
*Schleismann, K.D., & Gillis, J.M. (2011). The treatment of social phobia in a young boy with Asperger's Disorder. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 18, 515-529.
Gillis, J.M., Callahan, E.H., & Romanczyk, R.G. (2011). Assessment of Social Behavior in Children with Autism: The Development of the Behavioral Assessment of Social Interactions in Young Children. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 5, 351-360.
Gillis, J.M., Hammond Natof, T., Lockhin, S.B. & Romanczyk, R.G. (2009). Fear of routine physical exams in children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Prevalence and intervention effectiveness. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 24, 156-168.
*indicates graduate student co-author