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Sita G. Patel, Ph.D.

Sita G. Patel
Email Address: 
Phone Number: 

(650) 433-3857 


Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology
Director: Culture, Community & Global Mental Health Research Group

Faculty Program(s): 


Teaching and/or Research Emphasis and Interest Areas: 

Research interests: cultural and community psychology; immigration and acculturation among adolescents and families; community partnership and school-based intervention; refugee mental health; reducing health disparities


Ph.D., Clinical Psychology (Culture and Community Emphasis), University of California at Berkeley (2008)
M.A., Clinical Psychology, University of California at Berkeley (2005)
B.A., American Culture (Psychology and Sociology Emphasis, Hispanic Studies Minor), Vassar College (1998)


Dr. Sita G. Patel is a clinical and community psychologist with research interests in global mental health, and culture and context as they relate to immigrant mental health. Her work uses mixed-methods approaches to study acculturation stress, psychological, social, and academic adjustment, and access to treatment for mental illness among immigrant and minority populations. Her current projects include a longitudinal school-based study of risk and resiliency among newcomer adolescent immigrants; an evaluation study of California policies related to limited English proficiency adults in mental health care; a community partnership focusing on refugee mental health and access to treatment; and a study of trauma healing as a component of peace building in the Central African Republic.  Dr. Patel was awarded a U.C. Berkeley Dissertation Award in 2006, an American Psychological Foundation Graduate Research Award in 2008, and an NIH Health Disparities Research Loan Repayment grant in 2009.

Dr. Patel did her undergraduate work at Vassar College and her graduate work at University of California, Berkeley.  She completed the predoctoral internship at the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons (St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital), with specialties in cultural competency using evidence-based therapy, and intensive treatment for personality disorders.  Her postdoctoral training at the University of California, San Francisco (Community Academic Research Training Alliance), focused on community-based participatory partnership research.  Prior to joining the Palo Alto University faculty, Dr. Patel was an Adjunct Instructor at New York University, University of San Francisco, and U.C. Berkeley, teaching courses on Educational, Abnormal, and Cultural Psychology.  Dr. Patel currently teaches doctoral-level courses on cultural competency, evidence-based therapy, child and adolescent development, and personality disorders/Dialectical Behavior Therapy. She currently sits on the editorial board for the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry.

Dr. Patel is a licensed clinical psychologist with experience conducting cognitive behavioral therapies for adolescents, adults, and families from diverse cultural backgrounds.  Areas of specialty include treatment for anxiety and depression related to acculturation, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy as applied to a broad range of psychopathology.

Websites and Other Relevant Links: 
Selected Publications: 
Patel, S.G., Staudenmeyer, A., Firmender, W.F. & Wickham, R. & Fields, L. (in press).  War 
trauma and daily stressors among newcomer immigrant adolescents. International Journal of    
Intercultural Relations.
Patel, S.G., Wickham, R., Clarke, A., Eltareb, F., Macciomei, E (2016).  Family stressors 
among newcomer immigrant adolescents: A mixed-methods approach.  School Psychology Quarterly.
Patel, S.G., Barrera, A., Strambler, M.J., Macciomei, E., Muñoz, R.F. (2016). The Latino 
achievement gap among recent immigrants.  Journal of Latinos and Education.
Patel, S.G., Tabb, K., Sue, S. (2016).  Diversity, multiculturalism, inclusion.  In APA 
Handbook on Community Psychology.  Bond, M.A., Keys, C.B., Serrano-García, I. (Eds).
Patel, S.G., Reicherter, D. (2016). Psychotherapy for Immigrant Youth, Springer Publishing. 
Patel, S.G., Tabb, K., Strambler, M.J, & Eltareb, F. (2014).  Newcomer adolescent immigrants 
and discrimination: The Role of Cognitive Appraisal.  Journal of Adolescent Research.
Patel, S.G., Firmender, W., Snowden, L. (2013). Qualitative evaluation of mental health services for clients with limited English proficiency. International Journal of Mental Health Systems. www.ijmhs.com/content/7/1/27 
Patel, S.G. & Kull, M. (2010).  Assessing psychological symptoms in recent immigrant adolescents.  Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health.
Under Review:
Tormala, T. & Patel, S.G., Soukoup, E., Clarke, A. (under review).  Teaching cultural competency and 
cultural humility: A developmental approach to using the cultural formulation as a teaching tool.  Training and Education in Professional Psychology.
Mutiso, V.N., Musyimi, C. W., Ndetei, D.M., Henderson, D.C., & Patel, S.G., Unanue, I., Desai, D., 
Musau, A.M., Nandoya, E.S., Desai, D., Bunders, J. (under review).  A qualitative examination of challenges faced by traditional healers referring to community mental health services in Kenya. Transcultural Psychiatry.


1791 Arastradero Road
Palo Alto, CA 94304

Phone: (800) 818-6136 Fax: (650) 433-3888





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