Research in the TRAPP Lab focuses on improving personality, mood, and clinical assessment, with an emphasis on advancing the study and diagnosis of externalizing forms of psychopathology (e.g., narcissism, psychopathy, ADHD) and bipolar disorder. We adopt a transdiagnostic, dimensional approach to studying mental health issues because many DSM diagnoses covary and the same vulnerabilities (e.g., being perfectionistic, being prone to interpersonal issues) confer risk for many different disorders. Example research questions studied in our lab include the following:
- Why do individuals seeking treatment often meet criteria for multiple DSM disorders? How does this complicate diagnosis and treatment planning?
- How can we create a diagnostic system that is both empirically-based and clinically-useful for mental health practitioners and patients?
- Are individuals who are antagonistic aware of how they are perceived by others?
- Can someone who is narcissistic and psychopathic be a good leader and be successful?
- How do the measures and sample sizes used for studies influence the extent to which key results are likely to be replicated in other studies?
- Which statistical and methodological approaches are optimal for developing and validating psychological assessment measures? Should assessment measures be free for researchers and practitioners to use?