Bowman and Gordon Gray Distinguished Term Professor
Department of Psychology
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Research interests & goals:
Mitch Prinstein is a Bowman and Gordon Gray Distinguished Term Professor in the Clinical Psychology Program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Prinstein’s research examines cognitive-interpersonal models of internalizing symptoms among adolescents, with a specific focus on the unique role of peer relationships in the developmental psychopathology of depression, self-injury, and health risk behaviors. His work on depression and self-injury involves the study of reciprocal associations between depressed affect and negative peer experiences using a social information processing framework. A central aim of this work is to identify factors that may explain the emergence of gender differences in the prevalence of depressive symptoms and suicidality during the adolescent transition. Mitch’s work on health risk behaviors examines mechanisms and moderators of peer contagion at both the group and dyadic levels. This work also has included the study of risk behaviors, including sexual risk behavior, self-injury, and aggression, from a developmental-functional perspective.