Faculty Director

About Us

The CALMER Lab is devoted to the mission of helping understand and improve the social and emotional development of children and adolescents, particularly those with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). More specifically, we are interested in examining youth and family level factors such as comorbid disorders (anxiety, depression, oppositional defiant disorder, autism spectrum disorder, substance use) and parenting behaviors that predict better social and emotional outcomes. Additionally, our lab seeks to evaluate the acceptability and efficacy of the RELAX (Regulating Emotions Like An eXpert) Intervention for adolescents with ADHD. RELAX teaches coping, communication, and conflict management skills to adolescents ages 12-16, and works with parents to support their adolescents in effectively using these skills at home, school, and with peers.



Rosanna Breaux, Director

Dr. Breaux's research focuses on the emotional and social functioning of children and adolescents with ADHD, with a focus on emotion regulation. She is also interested in understanding the role parents play in shaping children and adolescent's social and emotional development. She utilizes a multi-method of assessing emotional development, including behavioral ratings, behavioral observations, and psychophysiological measures of ANS activity. Additionally, Dr. Breaux is working to evaluate and disseminate the RELAX intervention for adolescents with ADHD.

Rosanna Breaux Headshot

Courtney Swanson, Graduate Student

Courtney Swanson is a graduate student in the Clinical Science Psychology doctoral program at Virginia Tech. In 2019, she graduated with honors from Indiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and minors in Criminology and Counseling. During her years as an undergraduate, she was a Research Assistant in several labs including ISU’s ADHD Clinic. Broadly, her research interests include diversity’s effect on treatment utilization and efficacy, comorbidity of ADHD and other behavioral and emotional disorders, and how early identification and intervention can result in improved developmental trajectories. 

Courtney Swanson

Current Research Projects

Child and Adolescent Social-Emotional Development Study

We invite families of children ages 4-13 to participate in a Virginia Tech research study (IRB # 19-834) focused on how parents can help foster more positive development of social and emotional competencies as children grow. This study includes 3 annual visits in which families will complete questionnaires about emotional, social, and behavioral health; participate in play tasks; and complete weekly ratings for a two week period. Please contact the CALMER lab if you are interested in learning more about the study or in participating (calmerlab@gmail.com; 540-231-8511).

Join Us

Undergraduate Students: Are you an undergraduate student interested in being involved in clinical child research?  If so, contact Dr. Breaux and the CALMER lab at CALMERlab@gmail.com with your name, major, GPA, and resume/CV.  Please note - we are currently finished recruiting undergraduate RAs for Fall 2020.

Postbaccalaureate Students: Interested in increasing your competitiveness for getting a PhD? Check out the VT PREP (Post-baccalaureate Research and Education Program) program (https://prep.apsc.vt.edu/). 

Graduate Students: Dr. Breaux will not be taking a graduate student for the 2021-2022 school year. If you are interested in learning more about the Clinical Science program at Virginia Tech, please check out our program website and brochure.