Cassandra Bransford

Associate Professor

Dr. Cassandra Bransford (Associate Professor of Social Work) has extensive expertise in clinical social work practice, including over 30 years of experience as a psychiatric social worker. Dr. Bransford received her MSW from the University at Albany and PhD in Social Work, Advanced Practice, from Columbia University. She has been trained in psychoanalysis, Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), among other many other therapeutic approaches. Her research focuses on contributing to the knowledge base of evidence-based models to address mental health disparities among high-risk populations, with particular focuses on using IPT to reduce depression among older adults with cognitive impairment and their caregivers and using attachment-based EMDR to reduce depression and anxiety among mothers and their children in under-resourced neighborhoods. Dr. Bransford's scholarship and publications have also focused on the use of professional authority in managed care settings; incorporating critical theory into social work research, theory and practice; and developing advocacy coalitions within managed care settings. In addition to developing advanced clinical practice courses for the Department of Social Work since its inception, she is Director of the Advanced Certificate Program in Geriatric and Gerontological Social Work. Dr. Bransford also serves as Director of Applied Clinical Research for the Southern Tier Center on Aging, a division of the Institute for Intergenerational Studies. 

Educational Background

  • PhD, Social Work, Advanced Practice,
    School of Social Work, Columbia University
  • MSW, School of Social Welfare,
    University at Albany, SUNY
  • BA, English, SUNY New Paltz

Current Research Interests

  • Attachment-based practice approaches
  • Depression in older adults with cognitive impairment
  • Social work practice theory
  • Authority in social work practice
  • Critical social work

Recent Publications

Bransford, C. L., & Choi, S. (2012). Using interpersonal psychotherapy to reduce depression among homebound elders: A service-learning research collaboration. Best Practices in Mental Health: An International Journal, 8(1), 1-15.

Bransford, C. L. (2011). Integrating critical consciousness into direct social work practice: A pedagogical view. Social Work Education, 30(8), 932-947.

Bransford, C. L. (2011). Reconciling paternalism and empowerment in clinical practice: An intersubjective perspective. Social Work, 66(1), 33-41.


Cassandra Bransford

Office:  University Downtown Center
               Room 321
Phone:  607-777-9165
Fax:       607-777-5683
Curriculum Vitae

Last Updated: 8/19/14