Research Projects

Stress and coping during the transition to university

We are currently conducting a large-scale longitudinal project that involves surveying students at the University of Toronto three times during their first-year of university. Participants in this study report on their recent stressors in university, emotions, mental health, and coping behaviors. For this project, we are examining the types of stressors students experience, how they cope with stress, and links among stress, coping, and mental health. This project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Self-injury and emotions among post-secondary students

We are currently conducting a longitudinal survey and ecological momentary assessment study examining emotions, coping, and self-injury among undergraduate students. For this project, we are interested in understanding why students choose the coping behaviors that they do, the effectiveness of these coping behaviors, and what they perceive as some of the advantages and disadvantages of different types of coping. We are also interested in understanding the links between different types of coping behaviors and mental health more broadly (e.g., depressive symptoms, anxiety, self-injury). This project is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Understanding post-secondary student and staff knowledge of students’ mental health needs

We are currently conducting an ongoing international study examining university student and staff attitudes and knowledge about student mental health needs on university campuses. This study involves data collection both locally (several sites in Canada) and internationally (USA, New Zealand, Australia), and will serve to support efforts to target educational stakeholders knowledge needs. This project is being conducted in collaboration with the International Consortium for Self-Injury in Educational Settings (ICSES).

Understanding motivations for nonsuicidal self-injury

We are currently conducting a daily diary study focused on understanding the reasons students self-injure, as well as exploring links between self-injury and other coping behaviors among students. This project is funded by the Connaught New Researcher Award.