Research Interests

SPH investigators have a diverse range of research expertise, experience and interests. The tables below provides a summary of expertise by department and individual faculty member.

Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences ( HPCHS)
Epidemiology and Biostatistics ( EPI/BIOS)
Health Policy and Management ( HPM)
Environmental & Occupational Health ( EOH)

Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences (HPCHS)

Name Teaching Area Research Interest
Burdine, James
Community Health Development; Community Organization and Assessment; Community Health Status Assessment Measurement of factors influencing community capacity for population health improvement and community health development strategies, particularly community health needs assessment
Colwell, Brian
Social Ecology and Health Behavior; Seminar on Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs Adolescent smoking cessation; school health education; youth smoking prevention; adolescent mental health and substance abuse
Dowdy, Diane
Assistant Professor
Public Health Interventions Childhood Obesity aimed at prevention or reduction, physical activity programs to community settings; physical activity and aging
Hong, Yan
Associate Professor
Public Health Interventions, HIV/AIDS HIV/AIDS and STI prevention intervention; mental health of women and children affected by AIDS; mobile technologies to behavioral interventions
McKyer, Lisako
Assistant Professor
Minority health issues and health disparities; Parental influences on child health behaviors and outcomes; Socioecological factors of health behaviors; Publications 
McLeroy, Ken
Regents Professor and Distinguished Professor
Doctoral Seminar in Social and Behavioral Health; Introduction to Social and Behavioral Health; Program Evaluation; History of Medicine and Public Health, Community Interventions Community capacity; community based approaches to health promotion/disease prevention; social ecology and history of public health; Program Evaluation
Millard, Ann
Associate Professor
Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health; Health Disparities; Health in Cultural, Economic & Policy Contexts; Food safety Border Health; Maternal Child Health; International Health; Occupational Health and Farm Workers; Primary Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes; Food safety; Community-based participatory intervention research
Ory, Marcia
Regents Professor and Distinguished Professor, Associate Dean for Research
Public Health Interventions; Doctoral Seminars; Aging Aging and Health promotion; Chronic disease Management; Health Technology; Community Engagement; Translational research
Sharkey, Joe
Social and Behavioral Research Methods; Program Evaluation; Mixed-Methods Research; Environment and Policy Assessment Food access and food choice in underserved areas, food insecurity and hunger, childhood obesity, and effects of structural and individual characteristics on nutrition, physical activity, and health outcomes, promotora empowerment, community-engaged approached to population health
Spengler, John
Department Head, Professor
Active living policy and obesity prevention, Legal and policy issues around injury prevention, Physical activity and the built environment. Risk management policy and implementation in sport and recreation
Tai-Seale, Tom
Associate Professor
Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health; Program Planning; Program Evaluations; The Biology of disease Local health systems development and community empowerment of chronic disease prevention; program planning and evaluation for the prevention and control of chronic disease; health behavior coaching
Towne, Samuel The intersection of health and place; health-related disparities, health outcomes, and access to health services among aging, minority, and rural populations

Epidemiology and Biostatistics (EPI/BIOS)

Name Teaching Area Research Interest
Brender, Jean
Epidemiologic Methods, Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology, Fundamentals of Epidemiology Epidemiology of birth defects; prenatal environmental and occupational exposures and   adverse reproductive outcomes; adverse health effects associated with   residential proximity to industrial emissions and hazardous waste sites
Assistant Professor
Biostatistics II Genetic mixture models, High-dimensional inference, measurement error, mixed models, neurodegenerative diseases, nonparametric models, semiparametric models, survivial analysis
Professor and Department Head
Fundamentals of Epidemiology, Social Epidemiology Alcohol and drug availability and violence; Alcohol and drug prevention policies; System methodologies; Science and Pseudoscience in public health research.
Associate Professor
Introduction to Epidemiology, Spatial Epidemiology, GIS and Public Health Spatial Epidemiology, GIS & Spatial Analysis Methods, Environmental   Health/Exposure Science, Environmental Justice & Health Disparities, Healthcare Access, Population Studies/Spatial Demography
Horney, Jennifer
Associate Professor
Epidemiologic Methods,
Field Epidemiology Methods
Disaster epidemiology
methods, public health preparedness, population-based sampling, public health
systems and services research, public health surveillance, outbreak
investigation, disaster recovery, community resilience
Jiang, Luohua
Assistant Professor
Introduction to Biostatistics; Data Management and Computing, Survey, and Missing Data Analysis Longitudinal and Multilevel Data Analysis, Latent Variable Modeling, Quality of Life Research, Bayesian Methods, Health Disparities Research
Disaster Epidemiology and Preparedness Biosecurity and Public Health Preparedness
Perez-Patron, Maria Demographic methods, reproductive health, migration and family formation, immigrant health, minority aging
Shipp, Eva
Associate Professor
Injury Prevention, Occupational and environmental epidemiology, Farmworkers & other vulnerable populations, Motor vehicle safety and Record linkage, electronic health records & other large data sets
Taylor, Brandie
Assistant Professor
Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology Methods; Identifying Genetic Markers and Biomarkers to Predict Risk of Reproductive/Pregnancy Complications; Prevention of Sexually Transmitted Infections
Tekwe, Carmen
Assistant Professor
Longitudinal Data Analysis; Generalized Linear Models; Categorical Data Analysis; Topics in Measurement Error Models; Special Topics in Latent Variable Models    Cancer Research, Nutritional Epidemiology, Radiation Epidemiology, Gerontology, Health Disparities, Bioinformatics, Proteomics, Measurement Error Models, Longitudinal Data Analysis, Survival Analysis, Applications of Generalized Linear Models, Neurostatistics, Functional Data Analysis, and Mixed Effects Models.   
Xu, Xiaohui Epidemiological Methods, Exposure Assessment, Environmental Epidemiology Air pollution epidemiological studies, studying susceptible population to environmental exposures modified by genetics, pre-existing health conditions, and co-exposure to other factors, etc., maternal and child health, environmental exposure assessment, spatial epidemiology
Zhao, Hongwei
Statistical Inference, Linear Regression, Longitudinal Data Analysis, Survival Analysis Survival analysis and longitudinal data analysis, Quality-adjusted life time estimation, and cost-effectiveness analysis conducted with censored data, Problems arising from correlated data from longitudinal studies and   multilevel epidemiological studies
Zheng, Qi
Associate Professor
Biostatistics Mathematical Modeling of Biological Processes, Applied Stochastic Processes, Application of Computer Algebra
Zoh, Roger Biostatistics, Bayesian Inference, Bayesian Reliability Modeling, Bayesian Factor Analysis, Analysis of Genomic Data, Engineering Statistics, Bioinformatics, Funcational Longitudinal Data Analysis, Machine Learning, Statistical Modeling, Nutrition and Cancer Epidemiology. 

Department of Health Policy and Management (HPM)

Name Teaching Area Research Interest
Alexander, James
Associate Professor
Introduction to Health Policy and Management; Health Systems Leadership, Practicum Development of Community & Health Networks, Small Rural Hospital Leadership, Effectiveness of Critical Access Hospitals, Nursing Shortages
Benzer, Justin
Associate Professor
Organization Theories, Organizational Change Health Care for Texas Veterans, Implementation Science, Coordination/Integration of Health Care, and Specifically Between Primary Care and Mental Health
Bolin, Jane
Health Law and Ethics, Regulatory Compliance, Doctoral Capstone, Directed Study, Management of Human Resources Health Law and Ethics, Regulatory Compliance, Cancer Screening & Prevention, Diabetes Self-Management, Chronic Disease Management, Interdisciplinary & Translational Research, Rural Health Research, Rural Healthy People 2020
Callaghan, Timothy
Assistant Professor
Health Politics, Health Policy Analysis, Research Methods Health Politics, Medicaid Coverage and Expansion, Health Insurance Marketplace Enrollment and Regulation, Lobbying in the Health Sector, State Politics, Public Opinion, Executive Politics, Survey Design
Côté, Murray
Associate Professor
Health care operations, including patient flow, capacity planning and management, demand forecasting, and nurse staffing and scheduling
Ferdinand, Alva
Assistant Professor
Public Health Law & Ethics Impact of laws and other policies relative to public health outcomes such as roadway safety, obesity, and access to care.  Other interests include state and federal regulation of health care and community health development
Hatala, Jeffrey
Assistant Professor/MPH Program Director
Public health systems and service research; Rural health, health policy and vulnerable populations; Nutrition, physical activity, obesity and related conditions; Educational pedagogy, particularly around writing skills in health professions
Kash, Bita
Associate Professor
Strategic Planning and Marketing I; Strategic Planning and Marketing II, Directed Study; MHA Capstone Course Organizational capacity for change and transformation; Success factors for change implementation in healthcare; Sources of competitive advantage in healthcare using Resource Based View; Evaluation of integrated primary care physician networks; Health care staffing, quality and cost; Staff mix, turnover and staff qualification; Relationship between cost of care, profitability and outcomes; Strategic   management and decision making in nursing homes
Kum, Hye-Chung
Associate Professor
Data Science for Health Services Researchers; Health Information Technology; Retrospective Database Analysis for Health Policy and Management Data science for health care; population informatics; health informatics; health policy research and program evaluation using big data; decision support systems for health policy and management
McMaughan, Darcy
Assistant Professor
Introduction to Health Policy Elder abuse in long term care in the United States, pain management among Texas Medicaid recipients, quality of nursing home care in Texas, fall deaths among older adults, and the relationship between formal and informal care among Medicaid home health care recipients in Texas, and aging and health policy
Morrisey, Michael
Professor and Department Head
Health Insurance and Managed Care; Health Economics; Introduction to Health Services Research Employer-sponsored health insurance, Affordable Care Act, Medicare & Medicaid; effects of legislation on health and health care; hospital economics;price transparency in health care
Ohsfeldt, Robert
Introduction to Health Economics; Health Delivery Systems Financing; Directed Study Cost-Effectiveness and Cost Models; Economics of Health Behavior; Impact of Health Sector Regulation
Quiram, Barbara
Professor and Director
Critical Issues in Health Policy; Texas Training Initiative for Emergency Response Public Health Infrastructure, Health System Service Quality, Public Health Workforce Development, Rural Community Health System Planning and Development, Rural   Community Disaster Planning
Radcliff, Tiffany
Health Economics and research methodology Health economics, health policy, and health services research. Topical areas of   interest have included improving quality of care in long-term care, access to   care for rural and other underserved populations, improving care processes   and outcomes, and economic evaluation
Schmit, Cason D.
Assistant Professor
Law as a social determinant of health; Health information technology; Health information exchanges; privacy, confidentiality, and security of health information; public health reporting and surveillance; pharmacist's vaccination authorities
Washburn, David
Assistant Professor
Strategic Planning and Marketing Global Health, Health Policy, Health Systems Analysis, Strategic and Capital Planning, The Diffusion of Innovations, Decision-making Behavior, Access to Care

Environmental & Occupational Health (EOH)

Name Teaching Area Research Interest
Autenrieth, Robin
Professor (Civil Eng.)
Risk Assessment; Environmental Engineering Human health risk assessment, biological processes: water treatment, biodegradation and bioremediation of selected xenobiotic compounds, military wastes and petroleum products, bioavailability of contaminants in aqueous and soil environments
Benden, Mark
Associate Professor
Human Factors, Safety Engineering, Process Safety Management, and Ergonomics Office worker obesity, classroom ergonomics and childhood obesity, medical device development and testing, and rehabilitation engineering
Bokelmann, AnnaMarie
Assistant Professor
Environmental and Occupational Health, Environmental Training Program, Texas A&M   University System Texas Engineering Extension Service
Cizmas, Leslie
Assistant Professor
Basic Environmental Toxicology, MPH Public Health Capstone, Global Health Capstone Environmental health and xenobiotic exposures, assessment of pesticide exposure in children; development of
effective methods for exposure reduction including community health education, environmental justice and health disparities, global health
Johnson, Natalie
Assistant Professor
Environmental & Occupational Diseases, Environmental Health & Toxicology, Mechanisms of Disease Prevention Environmental carcinogens; Environmental health disparities; Exposure to foodborne (aflatoxins) and environmental carcinogens (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons); Chemoprevention; Development of biomarkers of exposure to traffic-related air pollution; Prenatal exposure to air pollution and associated epigenetic changes; Dietary interventinos to prevent environmentally-induced asthma; Population-based animal models of allergic airway disease; Outreach Activities: K-12 environmental education, undergraduate research mentoring, environmental sustainability, Healthy Gardens 
McDonald, Thomas
Acting Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor
Environmental   Measurements/Chemistry Environmental chemistry, petroleum geochemistry, and general organic chemistry
Mehta, Ranjana
Assistant Professor
Occupational Biomechanics, Ergonomics, Human Factors Neuroergonomics; Operator stress and fatigue; Obesity and the Aging Brain; Falls Prevention
Peres, S. Camille
Assistant Professor
Human Factors, Research Methods, Alternative Displays Biomechanics of Human computer interactions, Design guidelines for auditory displays, and usability of home health care technology
Pickens, Adam
Assistant Professor
Occupational Safety, Industrial Hygiene, Ergonomics, and Biomechanics Ergonomic tool development; Occupational safety screening/tool development, Upper extremity modeling; Manual materials handling, and Occupational biomechanics
Rene, Antonio
Occupational/Environmental,  Chronic Disease Epidemiology Occupational/Environmental, Chronic Disease Epidemiology
Sharma, Virender
Professor and Department Head
Environmental, Physical, Analytical Chemistry Iron-Based
Oxidants (Ferrates and Ferrites), Kinetics and Mechanism of High-Valent
Transition Metals, Advanced Oxidation Methods, Solar-Based Photoactive
Materials in Water Treatments, Green Synthesis of Nanoparticles, Formation,
Fate and Toxicity of Nanoparticles in Aquatic Environment
Carrillo Zuñ iga, Genny
Associate Professor
Border Environmental Health Risk Management and Communication Public health and US-Mexico Border Health issues with special interest in  interactions of human health and the environment, asthma in school children   and home safety and healthy homes