Beth Russell

Associate Professor

I am an Associated Professor in the HDFS department, the Director of the Center for Applied Research in Human Development (CARHD), and the program coordinator for the Certificate program in Family Life Education (CFLE), offered through the National Council on Family Relations. I mentor graduate students through the following program specializations:

I am currently accepting graduate student applicants for the 2019-2020 academic year.

Research Interests: Self-regulation in normative and at-risk samples

I study the development of self-regulation with a specific focus on the regulation of distress. I use a lifespan frame of study for my work and anchor most of my work in theoretical approaches that emphasize social and contextual influence on individual behavior. I often use mixed-method designs and am most intrigued by studies that lend themselves of application in the lived settings of the population at hand. My research falls into the following broad categories:

  •  parent-child mutual or co-regulation where child outcomes are heavily scaffolded by the caregiver
  •  self-regulation in youth where maturity demands for individuation from caregivers lead self-regulation to the forefront
  •  self-regulation during the transition to parenthood, where parent-child exchanges rely on parents’ regulatory skill.

Challenges to skillful regulation can be encountered in each of these phases so I often address these individual and contextual factors as well. Current topics include

  • substance use and recovery
  • families coping with a chronic health condition
  • parenting in the context of cumulative disadvantage

Dr. Russell’s CV

Selected Recent Publications (*student co-authors):

Guite, J., Russell, B. S., Pantaleao, A.*, Heller, A. T.*, Donohue, E.*, Galica, J., Zempsky, W., & Ohanessian, C. M. (2018, in press). Parents as coping coaches for adolescents with chronic pain: Promoting caregiver self-regulation. Clinical Practice in Pediatric Psychology

Lee, S.*, Park, C., & Russell, B. S. (2018, in press). Does distress tolerance interact with trait anxiety to predict challenge or threat appraisals? Personality and Individual Differences

Park, C., Russell. B. S., & Fendrich, M. (2018, in press). Mind-body approaches to prevention and intervention for young adults’ alcohol and other drug use/abuse. Medicines,

Russell, B. S., Lincoln, C. R.*, & Starkweather, A., (2018, in press). Distress tolerance as a theoretical mechanism of action for the self-management of chronic conditions. Journal of Holistic Nursing,

Elsaesser, C., Russell, B. S., Ohannessian, C. M., & Patton, D. (2017). Parenting in a digital age: Implications for online youth interpersonal violence. Aggression and Violent Behavior: A Review Journal, 35, 62-72

Lincoln, C. R.*, Russell, B. S., Racine, L.*, & Donohue, E.* (2017). Mother-child interactions and preschoolers’ emotion regulation outcomes: Nurturing autonomous emotion regulation. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(2), 559-573. DOI 10.1007/s10826-016-0561-z

Russell, B. S. & Gordon, M. (2017). Parenting and adolescent substance use: Moderation effects of community engagement in a nationally representative sample. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 15(5), 1023-1036. DOI 10.1007/s11469-017-9728-0

Russell, B. S., Simpson, E.*, Flannery, K.*, & Ohannessian, C. M. (2017). The impact of adolescent substance use on family functioning: A mediation of internalizing symptoms. Youth and Society, DOI:

Russell, B. S., Thompson Heller, A.*, & Hutchison, M.* (2017). Differences in adolescent emotion regulation and impulsivity: A group comparison study of school-based recovery students. Substance Use and Misuse, 52(1), 1-12

Russell, B. S., Lee, J. O., Speiker, S., & Oxford, M. L. (2016). Parenting and preschool self-regulation as predictors of social emotional competence in 1st grade. Journal of Research in Childhood Education, 30(2), 153-169. DOI: 10.1080/02568543.2016.1143414

Russell, B. S., Maksut, J.*, Lincoln, C. R.*, & Leland, A. J.* (2016). Computer-mediated parenting education: Digital family service provision. Children and Youth Services Review, 62, 1-8. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2016.01.012

Russell, B. S., Leland, A. J.*, & Trudeau, J. J. (2015). Social influence on adolescent polysubstance use: The escalation to opioid use. Substance Use & Misuse, 50(10), 1325-1331, DOI: 10.3109/10826084.2015.1013128

Russell, B.S., & Lincoln, C. R.* (2015). Distress tolerance and emotion regulation: Promoting maternal mental health across the transition to parenthood. Parenting: Science & Practice, 16 (1), 22-35. DOI:10.1080/15295192.2016.1116893

Beth Russell
Contact Information
Phone203 236 9874
Mailing AddressWaterbury campus 99 East Main Street Waterbury, CT 06702 USA