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Understanding Behavior: From Neurons to Societies

Intensive Longitudinal Data seminar series: Joshua Smyth

October 13, 2017 - 9:00am to 3:00pm


 On the Care and Feeding of Free-Range Humans: 

Ambulatory and Real-Time Intervention in Daily Life 

Part 3 of the Intensive Longitudinal Data Seminar Series presented by Psychological Sciences 

Joshua M. Smyth, Ph.D. 

Friday October 13th, 2017 from 9:00am to 3:00pm 

Location: SSM 317 

This presentation will broadly attempt to describe the rationale, implementation, and contributions of real-time, ambulatory assessment and intervention; that is, why and how to study ‘free-range’ humans. In particular, I will describe the importance of ecological momentary assessment (EMA) and the real time monitoring of person-centered variables, with a particular eye to ecological validity and time-varying within-person processes. Next I will briefly outline some approaches and emerging technologies for ambulatory assessment in real world settings, followed by some discussion of the potential to merge EMA/ambulatory assessments with other methodological and intervention approaches (including information at other time scales). Finally, I will provide examples of key time-varying patient variables (e.g., affect, behaviors, disease markers/physiology,) that can be measured and used to inform intervention approaches, including more traditional tailoring methods (at the between-person level) as well as innovative time-varying treatment options (e.g., just-in-time [JIT] and adaptive treatments at the within-person level, microrandomization). Workshop participants will also be asked to collaboratively propose, and present to the group, novel assessment and/or intervention ideas from their own domains of expertise. 

Background and Biography 

Joshua M. Smyth earned his Ph.D. in Health-Social Psychology from Stony Brook University, and is currently Distinguished Professor of Biobehavioral Health and Medicine at the Pennsylvania State University. Most broadly, his research reflects the application of the biopsychosocial model to meaningful health-related processes, contexts, and outcomes. His work encompasses three broadly defined areas: What are the effects of stress on health? Can we assess stress, affect, and health in an ecologically relevant manner? Can psychological interventions improve health and well-being? His recent work synthesizes these areas to use real-time, ambulatory data capture to dynamically tailor the implementation and delivery of in situ interventions to promote health and well-being. Having published ~200 articles and chapters in medical and psychological journals and books, Dr. Smyth has made important contributions to the understanding of stress and coping, psychological interventions, pain, immune disorders, chronic illness, eating behaviors, and ambulatory naturalistic monitoring. He has served as an editorial referee for more than three dozen journals, is an active member of the American Psychosomatic Society and the Society of Behavioral Medicine, and is the current President of the Society for Ambulatory Assessment. 


SSM 317

Contact Information

Matthew Zawadzki