Dr. Wendy Kliewer
Professor and Chair
806 W Franklin, rm 105
Professor and Chair (tenured)
Co-Leader, Culture, Race and Health Transdisciplinary iCubed Core
Associate Coordinator, Humphrey Fellowship Program
Ph.D. (1989), University of California, Irvine
Doctoral Program Affiliations
My research centers on the broad theme of risk and resilience, with much of my work specifically examining substance use in early, middle, or late adolescence as an outcome. I am interested in the effects of cumulative risk – the piling up of sociodemographic, psychosocial, and environmental stressors – and adjustment across a broad array of domains including academic, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and physiological functioning. Currently, I co-lead three projects: Project CARE – a study of risk and resilience in South African youth (located in Durban, South Africa); Project HEART – Health and Resilience in Teens – focused on low-income African American adolescents and their mothers in Richmond; and the Myanmar Youth Health Study – a study of risk and protective factors for teen substance use in Myanmar. I am also a co-investigator on the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) study, the largest long-term study of brain development and child health in the United States. Among protective factors, I have a particular interest in the role of the family in mitigating risk. I am committed to interdisciplinary, cross-cultural research, as well as to training the next generation of scholars to continue to do research that matters.
- What affects parenting in high-risk communities?
- Do bullies and victims have different physiological responses to stress?
- How urban, African American mothers handle their emotions and respond to children's emotions are important for children's emotional competence and well-being over time, particularly in boys.
- Are experiences of discrimination associated with worse sleep at night?
Kliewer, W., Riley, T., Zaharakis, N., Borre, A., Drazdowski, T. K., & Jäggi, L. (in press). Emotion dysregulation, anticipatory cortisol, and substance use in urban adolescents. Personality and Individual Differences.
Kliewer, W. (2016). Victimization and biological stress responses in urban adolescents: Emotion regulation as a moderator. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 45, 1812-1823.
Kliewer, W., Borre, A., Wright, A., Jäggi, L., Drazdowski, T., & Zaharakis, N. (2016). Parental emotional competence and parenting in low-income families with adolescents. Journal of Family Psychology, 30, 33-42.
Kliewer, W., & Lepore, S. J. (2015). Exposure to violence, social cognitive processing, and sleep problems in urban adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 44, 507-517.
Razali, M., & Kliewer, W. (2015). Validation of the Communities that Care measure adapted for use with adolescents and young adults in Malaysia. International Perspectives in Psychology: Research, Practice, Consultation, 4, 267-280.
- Full curriculum vitae [PDF]
- Research Internship, undergraduate level
- Developmental Research Methods, graduate level
Adolescent Brian Cognitive Development Study
Role: Co-Investigator (Site Principal Investigators: Bjork and Neale)
Source: National Institute of Drug Abuse
Period: 9/2015 – 5/2020
Virginia Commonwealth University Center for Youth Violence Prevention
Role: Co-Investigator (Principal Investigator: Farrell)
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Period: 9/2010 – 9/2015
Can Parents Help Prevent Youth Tobacco Use? An Evaluation of Two Evidence-Based Parenting Programs
Role: Co-Investigator (Principal Investigator: Corona)
Source: Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth
Period: 7/2012 – 6/2015
- 2017, Distinguished Mentoring Award, VCU College of Humanities and Sciences
- 2017, Presidential Award for Community Multicultural Enrichment (PACME), VCU
- 2016, Undergraduate Research Opportunities (UROP) Faculty Mentor Award, VCU
- Kliewer, Zyzniewski win College of Humanities and Sciences awards
- Kliewer and Hailu earn PACME awards
- Dr. Wendy Kliewer wins faculty mentor award from the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program