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Faculty Research

Bill Watson, history professorWilliam Watson, Ph.D., professor of history, gave two invited academic talks (plus others to local historical societies not listed below):

  • Villanova University Center for Irish Studies panelist for inaugural conference, “Whose/Who’s Irish” (Oct. 15, 2016)
  • American Catholic Historical Society, Philadelphia (Feb. 12, 2017)

Three new television documentaries about Duffy’s Cut this year.

  • Science Channel’s “Secrets of the Underground” episode entitled “America’s Buried Massacre,” which aired on March 1, 2017.
  • Irish-American Films, entitled “The Cut: the Journey of the Men and Women of Duffy’s Cut,” which premiered at Immaculata University on April 1, 2017.
  • The third film, by retired CBS-3 TV reporter Walt Hunter and called “The Deadliest Mile,” will be released in mid-June 2017.

Andrea Hunt, music therapy professorAndrea McGraw Hunt, Ph.D., assistant professor of music therapy, presented a research poster titled “Neurophenomenology of Guided Imagery and Music" in Harrisburg at the capitol building on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. 

Rita Colanzi, English professorRita Colanzi, Ph.D., associate professor of English, had the following essay published in the spring 2017 issue (Vol. 28, no.1, pgs. 40-43) of the journal Voices in Italian Americana:

"'Sometimes the spaghetti likes to be alone': Food as a Medium for Translating the Complexities of Italian American Identity.”

Dr. Colanzi presented the following paper at the South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) Conference in Jacksonville, Florida:

“Twisted Sister: Reimagining Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre.”  Paper presented for the panel "Creating and Un-Creating the World in the Romantic Imagination."

Laurie DiRosa, assistant professor of human movement sciences Laurie DiRosa, Ed.D., assistant professor of human movement sciences

DiRosa, L., Gupta, A., Spencer, L., & Debonis, S. (2017) Effectiveness of a Clinically Oriented Motivational Interviewing Training Program in Increasing Skills and Changing Perceptions among Family Practice Residents, published in Osteopathic Family Physician, 9(3), 10-17.

Motivational interviewing is a counseling style that allows clients to be the lead in their decision-making, rather than the classic advice-giving counseling style. Motivational interviewing skills are quickly becoming a pre-requisite for many jobs in the health care field, specifically those that rely on patient motivation for successful treatment outcomes (physical therapy, occupational therapy, nursing, etc.).

This study assessed: 1) the effectiveness of a Motivational Interviewing (MI) training program to improve the skills of family practice residents, and 2) resident and Standardized Patient’s perception of the effectiveness of training and beliefs about MI in clinical practice.

Methods: Seventeen family practice residents completed training over two months, followed by two months of reflection with peers and the researchers. Standardized Patient interactions were videotaped at baseline, post-intervention, and three months later, and were independently assessed using the Behavior Change Counseling Index (BECCI). Residents and Standardized Patients completed reflections at the end of each interaction, and residents completed a post-training survey.

Results: Thirteen residents completed the intervention and assessments. Average BECCI scores increased from 0.74 to 2.26, indicating positive change in residents. All residents demonstrated an increase in knowledge and an increase in their perceived ability to use MI with patients.

Comment: Adding individualized feedback is needed to maintain skills and confidence among trainees. Research on the effect of the use of MI on patient outcomes is also needed.

Conclusion: Incorporating MI training into a medical school curriculum is a potentially feasible, efficient and effective way of improving patient outcomes related to lifestyle behaviors.


Jed Yalof, psychology and counseling departmentJed Yalof, Psy.D., professor and chair of Immaculata's Graduate Psychology and Counseling Department

Yalof, J. (2017, April). Teacher as analyst, analyst as teacher: Encouraging analytic interest in students. Post-doctoral Psychoanalytic Institute Training: Never Too Late. In D. Downing (Chair). Fitting the well-rounded program into the square world of accreditation. Symposium conducted at the Annual Spring Meeting of the American Psychological Association Division of Psychoanalysis, New York, NY.

Yalof, J. (2017, March). A psychoanalytic integration. In J. Yalof. (Chair). Neurocognitive testing, personality assessment, and psychoanalytic psychotherapy: Integrative clinical illustration- a psychoanalytic illustration. Symposium conducted at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality Assessment, San Francisco, CA.

Yalof, J. (2017, March). What hath the patient? Discussion of three papers on: “The competing or complementary aspects of the PDM and DSM: A pedagogical inquiry.” In V. Brabender. (Chair). The competing or complementary aspects of the PDM and DSM: A pedagogical inquiry. Symposium conducted at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality Assessment, San Francisco, CA.

Yalof, J. (2017, March). Evaluating cognitive impairment in the context of negative psychotic symptoms. In J. Kleiger. (Chair). Silent sounds of psychosis: Assessing negative symptoms and cognitive impairment. Symposium conducted at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality Assessment, San Francisco, CA.

Yalof, J. (2017, January). Value of psychological assessment in applied clinical work. Grand Rounds, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE.


Yalof, J. (in press). A sequential-narrative psychodynamic approach to TAT interpretation

Yalof, J. (Winter, 2017). A cheat-sheet on helping students overcome “easy-to-make-mistakes.” Society for Personality Assessment Exchange, 29(1), 7.

Handbook of gender and sexuality in psychological assessment (pp. 373-395). New York, NY: Routledge.


Student Research

Get Fit at IU exercise science program

Undergraduate students Alyssa Malitsky and Brittany Robertson represented Immaculata University at the Undergraduate Research at the Capitol-Pennsylvania poster conference in Harrisburg, on Tuesday March 25, 2017.  Alyssa and Brittany were among the 69 students representing their respective colleges and universities from across the state of Pennsylvania who gathered to share their experiences with research with one another, faculty and Pennsylvania legislators and staff.  Alyssa and Brittany presented a poster titled, “The Effectiveness of GetFIT @ IU in Improving Cardiovascular Health, Balance and Quality of Life Among Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.”  Laurie DiRosa, Ed.D., assistant professor of human movement sciences, served as an advisor and mentor for the project. 


"Using Collaborative Supervision Assessments for Student Self-Advocacy: A Qualitative Look at Students' Formative Feedback on Supervision," a research poster, was presented on March 19, 2017 at the American Counseling Conference in San Francisco, California by Ed Wagner, graduate student in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program (and Beta Mu officer) and Dr. Ryan Bowers, Assistant Professor in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program in the Department of Psychology and Counseling.

Music therapy rallyAlong with Dr. Andrea McGraw Hunt and Dr. Lillian Eyre, several students from Immaculata University attended the Music Therapy Rally in Harrisburg at the Capitol on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. The Music Therapy Rally was in support of licensure for music therapists in the state of Pennsylvania. They were among many music therapists, students across the State of Pennsylvania, and the PA Task Force. 


Immaculata's Exercise Science Symposium took place on April 20, displaying 21 posters by 31 students. Interdisciplinary judges critiqued students on the content, visual display and oral presentation of their poster.

Matthew Pascarella (left) and Michael Pascarella (right) presented a poster entitled "Nutrition's Effect on Injury Recovery."



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1145 King Road, Immaculata, PA. 19345 p. 610-647-4400 or call toll-free: 1-877-42 TODAY
Federal Compliance Links | Clery | Employment
Immaculata University | Copyright © All Rights Reserved