College Student Substance Abuse Research Group

Dr. Amie Haas


Overview of our lab.  Dr. Haas’ main areas of research are examining high risk drinking and drug use practices in adolescents and emerging adults, and identifying how risky substance use contributes to other clinical concerns (e.g., risky sexual behaviors, affective disorders).  Many of her studies are conducted with college students and the lab actively collaborates with several Bay Area universities and has a programmatic line of research which evaluates high-risk drinking practices like pregaming, drinking games, conjoint alcohol-marijuana use and alcohol-energy drink use as well as how these behaviors relate to other comorbidities and risky behaviors. 

What are students in the lab researching?  There are several areas that students are currently working in and are developing independent lines of research.  Examples include (a) developing better ways to differentiate recreational from problematic marijuana use in younger users; (b) examining the link between sexual risk taking and heavy consumption resulting in alcohol-induced blackouts; (c) conducting program evaluations about how changes to campus alcohol policies impact consumption and helping behaviors; and (d) developing targeted prevention and interventions for pregaming and other risky consumption styles. 

In addition, many studies in substance abuse rely on advanced statistical methods and students have the option to develop analytical skills using existing datasets. Examples include using receiver operating characteristics (ROC) to develop clinical cut scores for addiction assessment measures, identifying subgroups of users with latent profile analysis, either cross-sectionally (LPA) or across the year using latent class transition analysis (LCTA), and using structural equation modeling and growth curve mixture modeling in an array of studies.  These are advanced approaches, though, and students can choose to get involved at this level or keep to more basic statistics they learned in the first-year statistics and methods courses.  These studies often evolve in collaboration with Dr. Wickham and there are opportunities to be cross-trained in both labs for select students who express this kind of interest.

What does lab involvement entail?  Students in this lab can get involved in multiple ways, ranging from developing and implementing their own studies to using archival data to develop poster presentations and assist in publications.  Lab expectations and obligations include: (A) attendance and participation in bi-monthly lab meetings and (B) working collaboratively with lab members on posters/papers to be disseminated at national conferences.  In addition, there are opportunities to collaborate on publications provided that students have interest and writing/statistical skills.

 How do I find more out about the lab or apply for a position? 

First year students are welcome to visit the bi-weekly lab meetings.  Please contact Dr. Haas via email to inquire about time and availability in advance.

Students who wish to apply for consideration should submit the following materials to Dr. Haas via email: 

  1. Cover letter detailing areas of research interests, prior research experience and career aspirations
  2. Current CV
  3. Copy of unofficial transcripts from PAU
  4. A 1-2 page writing sample that reflects your scientific writing and interest in one of the areas studied in this lab. 


A subset of applicants will be invited to interview for final positions in the lab.  Dr. Haas will contact those students directly after applications have been received and reviewed.


List of student awards received by lab members at national conferences (2012 – present) 

2015    Research Society on Alcoholism Student Merit Awardees

  • Charlotte Beard
  • Kevin McKenna
  • Emily Morimoto

2014    Research Society on Alcoholism Student Merit Awardees

  • Sarah Borish
  • Elise Gibbs (PsyD student)
  • Kate Macia
  • Emily Morimoto

2013    Research Society on Alcoholism Student Merit Awardees

  • Sarah Borish
  • Micah Shields

2012    American Psychological Association Outstanding Student Research Projects,

Division 50 (Addictions)

  • Jessica Britt
  • Courtenay Cummings
  • Stephanie Taylor


Examples of student co-authored work products:

Note:  * Indicates student co-author


Barthel, J.M.*, Beard, C.L.*, Hatch, S.*, Wickham, R.E. & Haas, A.L.  (in submission).  Gender differences in risk factors associated with specific item endorsement on the YAACQ blackout subscale. Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism, Denver, CO.

Beard, C.L.*, Barthel, J.M.* & Haas, A.L.  (in submission).  The incidence of sexual risk taking is influenced by repeated blackouts across the first year of college. Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism, Denver, CO.

Cummings, C.*, Beard, C.* & Haas, A. (in submission).  Differences in substance use and related consequences by conjoint alcohol-marijuana use practices.  Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism, Denver, CO.

Haas, A. L., Barthel, J.M.* & Taylor, S.* (In Press).  Sex and Drugs and Starting School: Differences in Precollege Alcohol-Related Sexual Risk Taking by Gender and Recent Blackout Activity. Journal of Sex Research.

Haas, A.L., Beard, C.L.*, & McKenna, K.R.* (In Press).  Proportion as an Index of Problematic Alcohol-Energy Drink Consumption in College Students. Journal of Substance Use.

Haas, A.L., Zamboanga, B.L., Bersamin, M., & Hyke, T*. (In Press). Perceived Access and Parental Monitoring as Moderators of Impulsivity and Marijuana Use among Adolescents.  Journal of Primary Prevention.

Haas, A. L., Wickham, R. E., & Gibbs, E.* (2016). Variability in pregaming typologies across the freshman year: a multi-wave latent transition analysis. Substance Use & Misuse51(8), 961-971.

Haas, A.L., Wickham, R., Macia, K., Shields, M.*, Macher, R. & Schulte, T. (2015).  Identifying classes of conjoint alcohol and marijuana use in entering freshmen.  Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 29, 620-626.

Hyke, T.,* Haas A., & Buckman H.* (in submission).Ecologically Valid Assessment of Cannabis Use among Emerging Adults: A Qualitative Study. Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 California Psychological Association Convention, Burlingame, CA. 

Hyke, T.*, Beard, C.*, & Haas, A. (in submission).Characteristics of Comorbid Marijuana Use and Internet Gaming Disorder. Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 Society of Behavioral Medicine 38th Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions, San Diego, CA.

Wickham, R., McKenna, K.*, Morimoto, E.*, Brown, L. & Haas, A. (in submission).  Does medical amnesty policy implementation change actual drinking and negative consequences in first year college students?  Poster submitted for consideration at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism, Denver, CO.

Read, J.P., Haas, A.L., Radomski, S.,* Wickham, R.E. & Borish, S.* (2016).  Identification of hazardous drinking with the young adult alcohol consequences questionnaire:  Receiver operating characteristics as a function of gender.  Psychological Assessment,   28(10), Oct 2016, 1276-1289.


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