Primary Research Areas
Alcoholism treatment outcome evaluation; relapse prevention; secondary prevention of alcohol problems.
Therapeutic Alliances in Alcoholism Treatment (funded by NIAAA). In this study, the therapeutic alliance, from the perspective of the patient, is being studied regularly over the course of outpatient treatment and its relationship to treatment variables (such as attendance) and posttreatment functioning (including drinking behavior) evaluated. The study is intended to advance knowledge on therapeutic alliances, the enhancement of which is anticipated to improve treatment outcomes. The study is being conducted in collaboration with Drs. Stephen A. Maisto of Syracuse University and Ronda L. Dearing and Joseph Lucke of RIA.
Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction in Alcoholism Treatment (funded by NIAAA). This investigation will examine MBSR’s benefits as an adjunctive intervention in the outpatient treatment of alcohol dependence. The study is being conducted in collaboration with Drs. Kimberly S. Walitzer, Nancy J. Smyth, UB School of Social Work, and Craig R. Colder, UB Department of Psychology.
Research Training on Alcohol Etiology and Treatment (funded by NIAAA). Co-directing a program of specialized postdoctoral training for individuals seeking to pursue a career in alcohol research (in collaboration with R. Lorraine Collins, PhD of UB’s School of Public Health and Health Professions).
Facilitating Involvement in AA During Alcoholism Outpatient Treatment (funded by NIAAA). Assessing the interrelationships between AA involvement, spirituality, and drinking outcomes (in collaboration with Co-Investigators Kimberly S. Walitzer, PhD and Kurt H. Dermen, PhD).
Dissemination of a MI-based Preparatory Procedure (funded by NIAAA). Investigating the dissemination and "real world" effectiveness of a motivational interviewing-(MI)-based preparatory procedure designed to reduce early attrition from alcoholism outpatient treatment (in collaboration with Principal Investigator Kimberly S. Walitzer, PhD and Co-Investigator Kurt H. Dermen, PhD).
Impulse Control as a Mechanism of Change in the Treatment of Alcohol Dependence (funded by NIAAA). Multi-modal assessment of impulse control as a mechanism of change before, during, and after cognitive behavioral treatment for alcohol dependence (in collaboration with Principal Investigator Rebecca J. Houston, PhD and Co-investigators Ronda L. Dearing, PhD, Gerard J. Connors, PhD, and Gregory G. Homish, PhD).
Relapse Among Severely Mentally Ill Alcohol Abusers (funded by NIAAA). Investigating factors that predict who continues to drink following alcohol and mental health treatment versus those individuals who are able to maintain abstinence from alcohol (in collaboration with Principal Investigator Clara M. Bradizza, PhD and Co-Investigators Paul R. Stasiewicz, PhD and Stephen A. Maisto, PhD, Syracuse University).
Secondary Prevention of Alcohol Problems in Rural Areas (funded by NIAAA). Evaluating three secondary prevention drinking reduction interventions among problem drinkers (men and women) living in rural areas (in collaboration with Co-Investigator Kimberly S. Walitzer, PhD).
Therapeutic Alliance as a Change Mechanism in Alcoholism Treatment (funded by NIAAA). This investigation will help characterize the interplay of the therapeutic alliance and alcohol involvement during and following an outpatient treatment episode. The study is being conducted in collaboration with Kurt H. Dermen, PhD, and Stephen A. Maisto (Syracuse University).
Treatment Settings for Alcoholics: A Field Extension (funded by NIAAA). Replicating and extending into community field setting the investigative team's prior work on matching clients to inpatient versus outpatient alcoholism treatment (in collaboration with Principal Investigator Robert G. Rychtarik, PhD and Co-Investigators Neil B. McGillicuddy, PhD and Robert S. Whitney, MD).
Representative and Recent Publications
Connors, G. J., & Walitzer, K. S., on behalf of the Staff of the Research Institute on Addictions. (2012). Addiction research centres and the nurturing of creativity: The Research Institute on Addictions, University at Buffalo. Addiction, 107, 1214-1220.
Connors, G. J., Donovan, D. M., & DiClemente, C. C. (2013). Substance abuse treatment and the stages of change: Selecting and planning interventions. (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.
Maisto, S. A., Galizio, M., & Connors, G. J. (2011). Drug use and abuse. (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
Connors, G. J., Walitzer, K. S., & Tonigan, J. S. (2008). Spiritual change in recovery. In M. Galanter & L. A. Kaskutas (Ed.), Recent developments in alcoholism: Vol. 18 Research on Alcoholics Anonymous and spirituality in addiction recovery (pp. 209-227). New York: Springer.
Walitzer, K. S., & Connors, G. J. (2007). Thirty-month follow-up of drinking moderation training for women: A randomized clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75, 501-507.
Maisto, S. A., Connors, G. J., & Dearing, R. L. (2007). Alcohol use disorders. Toronto: Hogrefe & Huber.
Maisto, S. A., & Connors, G. J. (Eds.) (2006). Relapse in the addictive behaviors. Special Issue of Clinical Psychology Review, 26.
Maisto, S. A., Zywiak, W. H., & Connors, G. J. (2006). Course of functioning one year following admission for treatment of alcohol use disorders. Addictive Behaviors, 31, 69-79.
Connors, G. J., & Stewart, S. H. (2004). Alcohol and other substance use disorders. In L. J. Haas (Ed.), Handbook of primary care psychology (pp. 187-200). New York: Oxford University Press.
Sobell, L. C., Sobell, M. B., Connors, G. J., & Agrawal, S. (2003). Assessing drinking outcomes in alcohol treatment efficacy studies: Selecting a yardstick of success. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 27, 1661-1666.
Connors, G. J., & Maisto, S. A. (2003). Drinking reports from collateral individuals. Addiction, 98 (Supplement 2), 21-29.
Connors, G. J., & Maisto, S. A. (2003). Drinking reports from collateral individuals. Addiction, 98, 21-29.
Connors, G. J., Walitzer, K. S., & Dermen, K. H. (2002). Preparing clients for alcoholism treatment: Effects on treatment participation and outcomes. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 70, 1161-1169.
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