Texas Tech University

Couple, Marriage, and Family Therapy

Research Training

With active mentoring by faculty, students rapidly gain skills, experience, and confidence in research. Students have presented their research at national and international conferences and have published in journals prior to graduation.

All faculty members are engaged in research. Generally, these provide opportunities to gain experience in research by working with the faculty members. In addition, each student will design a research project with the assistance of her or his faculty Adviser.

Current faculty research includes:

  • Systemic intervention for Intimate Partner Violence and systemic implications of traumatic stress.
  • Couple conflict and violence, relationship education, mindfulness, theory and qualitative inquiry.
  • Solution focused brief therapy assessment and development, Microanalysis
  • Clinical judgment, medical family therapy, assessment, gender and ethnicity, treatment acceptability
  • Substance use, child/adolescent development, family factors related to adolescent binge drinking, emotionality of the family system and substance use, diversity
  • Women's health; family resiliency during cancer treatment, health care providers' perceptions of the need for family therapy as part of interdisciplinary care; family dynamics around eating disorders; medical family therapy training.
  • Grief and Loss, poor pre-natal diagnosis and relational coping process, resilience in families, living with Down Syndrome

Sample student research includes:

  • Associations between perceptions of military stressors, mental health and marital adjustment in military spouses
  • The impact of social support on graduate student mental health
  • Meaning in illness, patient satisfaction with care, use of care, and health outcomes with cancer survivors
  • Understanding the relationship between activation, utilization of healthcare services, overall functioning, and use of family and support resources in complex, high-risk patients
  • Adult experiences of parentification: An Interpretive Phenomenological Study
  • Women's long-term recovery from eating disorders and their maternal relationships: A grounded theory study.

Faculty members are active with a number of sponsored research and service projects. Usually these grants provide additional opportunities for students to gain clinical experience for some compensation. Recent Grant Activities include:

Recent Grant Activities:

Jaclyn Cravens, Ph.D., LMFT-A

Internal Grants:
Cravens, J.D. Online and Distance Education proposal for the Addictive Disorders and Recovery Studies program – Course Development grant ADRS 4329. Texas Tech University, eLearning Worldwide. (Accepted Dec. 22, 2015: $5,000.00).

Cravens, J.D. Online and Distance Education proposal for the Addictive Disorders and Recovery Studies program – Course Development grant ADRS 3329. Texas Tech University, eLearning Worldwide. (Accepted Dec. 22, 2015: $5,000.00).

Cravens, J. D., Shumway, S., & Morelock, C. N. Online and Distance Education proposal for the Addictive Disorders and Recovery Studies program. Texas Tech University, eLearning Worldwide (Accepted Jan. 05, 2015, $19,249.97).

Doug Smith, Ph.D.

IN CLINIC COUPLES The Hogg Foundation, Funded: $17,222.00
Matching Department Funds: $1000.00. Matching College Funds: $5225.00

Texas Tech University, Funded: $10,000

IN CLINIC COUPLES Verizon Foundation, Funded: $20,000

Kristy Soloski, Ph.D., LMFT-A

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health. R03: Assessing prefrontal cortex functioning in response to alcoholism relapse cues. Status: Not Funded, Submitted February, 16, 2016. Role: Primary Investigator.
Total Direct Costs: $100,000

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health. R01: A longitudinal examination of the gene-environment interplay in alcohol use. Status: Not Funded, Submitted October, 5, 2015. Role: Lead Primary Investigator. Project Period: 07/01/2016 - 06/30/2019. Tracking Code: GRANT12011068.
Total Direct Costs: $300,000
Total Indirect Costs: $119,074.00
Total Direct and Indirect Costs for Entire Project Period: $419,074.00

Health Disparities Research Loan Repayment Program Grant, National Institutes of Health. Examining Binge Drinking Disparities in the Latino/Hispanic Population, Submitted November 2014. NIH LRP Tracking Code: KYAI9112. Not funded.

Faculty Research Seed Grant, College of Human Sciences, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX. The study of relational influences on substance use from adolescence to young adulthood, 2014.
Award Amount: $5,000.

Nicole Piland, Ph.D.

Covenant Prevention and Wellness grant. (2016) ($41, 402) Medical Family Therapy Initiative to provide Medical Family Therapy Services to children and families on multiple units or receiving outpatient care for chronic illness.

TTU Scholarship Catalyst Program
Medical Family Therapy Collaboration (with Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Southwest) to provide medical family therapy services to families housed at RMHCSW. 2016 ($3500 awarded – for 2016)

Early Head Start - Mental Health Specialist Supervisor (Co-PI: 15%)
In collaboration with Stephanie Shine (70%), Mallory Boylan (15%)
Provide clinical supervision to mental health specialist position/provider. June 2010 – present
6/15 – 5/16 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($628, 068)
6/14 – 5/15 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($703, 436)
6/13 - 5/14 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($694,626)
6/12 – 5/13 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($689,661)
6/11 – 5/12 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($689,661)
6/10 – 5/11 Early Head Start (co-PI: 15%) ($677,564)

Lubbock County Juvenile Justice Center (LCJJC) Mental Health Service Contract
Supervise therapy providers in residential center and probation services
Develop and implement group curriculum, outcome data collection and evaluation October 2010 – present ($324,975.50 to date)

Children's Advocacy Center of the South Plains (CAC) Clinical Supervisor
Supervise (7) therapists-in-training providing Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to victims of trauma and their caregivers. Attend Multi-disciplinary Team (MDT) meetings. May 2014 - present (2015: $5,600), (2014: $2,950)

Medical Family Therapy Clinical Supervisor (pro bono contract)
Project coordinator for (5) therapists-in-training providing family therapy services to PICU and Pediatric Oncology patients at Covenant hospital, as well as supervising clinical services provided at Joe Arrington Cancer Center. November 2014 - present

Couple, Marriage, and Family Therapy