Robert Thomas Brennan

Robert Thomas Brennan
Brandeis University

Ed.D., Harvard University

About

150
Publications
202,656
Reads
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8,168
Citations
Introduction
Robert Thomas Brennan currently works at the Graduate School of Social Work, Boston College, USA. Robert does research in Emergency Medical Care, Public Health and Psychometrics. His most recent publication is 'Resident Vitality in 34 Programs at 14 Academic Health Systems: Insights for Educating Physicians and Surgeons for the Future'.
Additional affiliations
July 2018 - present
Boston College, USA
Position
  • Research Associate
January 2005 - June 2018
Harvard School of Public Health
Position
  • Research Associate
January 2003 - December 2008
Education
September 1983 - June 1989
Harvard University
Field of study
  • Education
September 1983 - November 1985
Harvard University
Field of study
  • Education
June 1978 - June 1979
Middlebury College
Field of study
  • German language and literature

Publications

Publications (150)
Article
Full-text available
To estimate the cause-effect relationship between exposure to firearm violence and subsequent perpetration of serious violence, we applied the analytic method of propensity stratification to longitudinal data on adolescents residing in Chicago, Illinois. Results indicate that exposure to firearm violence approximately doubles the probability that a...
Article
Full-text available
The majority of children in the United States experience parent-to-child physical aggression (PCPA), a disciplinary strategy out of favor with many experts. Several decades of research have documented a link between community characteristics and severe child maltreatment. None have taken a multilevel approach to study whether neighborhoods affect t...
Article
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Several empirical studies have suggested that neighborhood characteristics influence health, with most studies having focused on neighborhood deprivation or aspects of the physical environment, such as services and amenities. However, such physical characteristics are not the only features of neighborhoods that potentially affect health. Neighborho...
Article
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This article illustrates new statistical methods for the study of psychological change in married couples. The design involves time-series data on each partner. The analysis combines longitudinal methods for studies of individual change with cross-sectional methods for the study of matched pairs. Each person is viewed as changing over time as a fun...
Article
Full-text available
Traditional classroom-based instruction of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) has failed to achieve desired rates of bystander CPR. Video self-instruction (VSI) is a more accessible alternative to traditional classroom instruction (TRAD), and it achieves better CPR skill performance. VSI employs a 34-min training tape and an inexpensive manikin. V...
Article
Full-text available
Background During the 2014–15 Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) epidemic, thousands of people in Sierra Leone were infected with the devastating virus and survived. Years after the epidemic was declared over, stigma toward EVD survivors and others affected by the virus is still a major concern, but little is known about the factors that influence stigma to...
Article
Objectives Older displaced persons often receive limited attention from aid organizations, policy-makers and service providers in countries of resettlement. The objective of this study is to identify the relationship between experiencing traumatic events and stressors prior to resettlement, current resettlement stressors, social support, and mental...
Article
Full-text available
Countering violent radicalization is a priority in many countries, prompting research that assesses attitudes and beliefs about violent radicalization in the general population. The majority of violent radicalization assessments have been developed among specific populations, with limited investigation into the generalizability and cross-cultural a...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction Families living in extreme poverty require interventions to support early-childhood development (ECD) due to broad risks. This longitudinal cluster randomised trial examines the effectiveness of Sugira Muryango (SM), a home-visiting intervention linked to Rwanda’s social protection system to promote ECD and reduce violence compared wit...
Article
Background: Millions of people worldwide experience severe trauma in their lifetime. Trauma has immediate and long-term effects on emotional wellbeing. Moreover, the experiences of one generation may influence subsequent generations via social and biological pathways. Poor mental health and emotion dysregulation associated with trauma may affect p...
Article
Background: This article describes the incorporation of an evidence-based mental health intervention, the Youth Readiness Intervention (YRI), into a youth entrepreneurship training program in Sierra Leone. A collaborative team approach (CTA) was used as the implementation strategy to address the human resource shortage and related challenges assoc...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Globally, one in four children lives in a country affected by armed conflict or disaster often accompanied by exposure to a range of adversities including violent trauma and loss. Children involved with armed groups (often referred to as "child soldiers") typically exhibit high levels of mental health needs linked to their experiences....
Article
Background: Former child soldiers are at elevated risk for mental health problems (e.g., traumatic stress, emotion dysregulation, and internalizing and externalizing problems). To examine which groups of former child soldiers are more likely to have difficulties with emotion regulation, interpersonal relationships, and mental health postconflict,...
Article
Full-text available
Early child development (ECD) programs are increasingly combined with targeted cash transfers for poor households to break intergenerational poverty. However, few evidence-based, scalable, and sustainable ECD programs that complement cash transfer programs exist in in low- and-middle-income countries. We conducted a cluster-randomized pilot study t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Sugira Muryango is a father-engaged early child development and violence-prevention home-visiting programme delivered by trained lay workers. This cluster-randomised trial evaluates whether families living in extreme poverty ( Ubudehe 1, the poorest category in the Government of Rwanda’s wealth ranking) who receive Sugira Muryango in co...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Sugira Muryango is a father-engaged early child development and violence-prevention home-visiting programme delivered by trained lay workers. This cluster-randomised trial evaluates whether families living in extreme poverty ( Ubudehe 1, the poorest category in the Government of Rwanda’s wealth ranking) who receive Sugira Muryango in co...
Chapter
This collection offers an evidence-based approach to evaluating children for ADHD. https://shop.aap.org/pediatric-collections-adhd-evaluation-and-care-paperback/
Article
Purpose: There are disparities in mental health of refugee youth compared with the general U.S. Population: We conducted a pilot feasibility and acceptability trial of the home-visiting Family Strengthening Intervention for refugees (FSI-R) using a community-based participatory research approach. The FSI-R aims to promote youth mental health and...
Article
The Framework for K‐12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards propose that students learn core ideas and practices related to engineering as well as science. To do so, students will need high‐quality curricular materials designed to meet these goals. We report an efficacy study of an elementary engineering curriculum, Engineeri...
Article
PURPOSE: We report on the extent of sexual harassment among residents and examine its relationship to specialty and program year and effects. METHODS: Using the C–Change Resident Survey, we surveyed residents in 34 internal medicine, pediatrics, and general surgery programs in 14 academic medical centers (AMCs). A total of 1708 residents completed...
Preprint
Full-text available
Objective: To investigate the associations of war and postconflict factors with mental health among Sierra Leone's former child soldiers as adults. Method: In 2002, we recruited former child soldiers from lists of soldiers (aged 10-17 years) served by Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration centers and from a random door-to-door sample in 5 d...
Article
Objective: To clarify our understanding of how the culture of residency training influences the well-being of residents, this study reports on the vitality of residents at 34 programs across the United States and identifies characteristics of the programs, institutions and residents that are associated with high resident vitality. Design: In 201...
Article
Full-text available
Engineers and policymakers have expressed concern that too few students enter the engineering pipeline. This has led to many efforts to engage students in engineering in after-school programs, summer programs, and more recently, in school curricula. The expectation is that, through these efforts, greater numbers of more demographically diverse chil...
Article
A pre-post design with 6–13-month follow-up assessed the feasibility and acceptability of a home-visiting intervention to promote early childhood development, improve parenting and shared decision-making, and reduce violence in impoverished Rwandan households. Twenty vulnerable families with a child 36-months or younger enrolled in Sugira Muryango....
Article
Background: Children affected by HIV are at risk for poor mental health. We conducted a pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) of the Family Strengthening Intervention (FSI-HIV), a family home-visiting intervention to promote mental health and improve parent-child relationships in families with caregivers living with HIV, hypothesizing that child...
Chapter
Full-text available
As with other aspects of the psychology of women, the major challenge of research on the work-family interface was, and still is, to assess the validity of our strongly held myths about the nature of women, men, work, and family. In this paper we will look at seven pervasive myths about gender and work: (1) the blissful housewife, (2) the breadwinn...
Article
BackgroundA practical instrument is needed to reliably measure the clinical learning environment and professionalism for residents. Objective To develop and present evidence of validity of an instrument to assess the culture of residency programs and the clinical learning environment. DesignDuring 2014–2015, we surveyed residents using the C - Chan...
Article
This study explored how coping with war-related traumatic events in Sierra Leone impacted mental health outcomes among 529 youth (aged 10-17 at baseline; 25% female) using longitudinal data from three time points (Time 1 in 2002, Time 2 in 2004, and Time 3 in 2008). We examined two types of coping items (approach and avoidance); used multiple regre...
Article
Objective: A practical, reliable, and valid instrument is needed to measure the impact of the learning environment on medical students' well-being and educational experience and to meet medical school accreditation requirements. Methods: From 2012 to 2015, medical students were surveyed at the end of their first, second, and third year of studie...
Article
Introduction: Despite the well-recognized benefits of mentoring in academic medicine, there is a lack of clarity regarding what constitutes effective mentoring. We developed a tool to assess mentoring activities experienced by faculty and evaluated evidence for its validity. Methods: The National Initiative on Gender, Culture, and Leadership in...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Little attention has been paid to potential relationships between mental health, trauma, and personal exposures to Ebola virus disease (EVD) and health behaviors in post-conflict West Africa. We tested a conceptual model linking mental health and trauma to EVD risk behaviors and EVD prevention behaviors. Methods and findings: Using s...
Data
EVD prevention behavior scale. (DOCX)
Data
Mental health section, including PTSD scale, of study questionnaire. (DOCX)
Poster
Children and families affected by HIV merit special attention by policymakers, health workers, and researchers. HIV-related stressors, family functioning, and child mental health are inextricably linked and can be addressed via family-based preventive interventions. The FSI-HIV is a promising intervention to promote resilience and prevent mental he...
Poster
This mixed methods analysis of an RCT of the FSI-HIV captures the experiences of participants and potential positive effects that home-visiting interventions may have on caregiver alcohol use and behavior, family dynamics and child mental health.
Article
Full-text available
HIV-affected families report higher rates of harmful alcohol use, intimate partner violence (IPV) and family conflict, which can have detrimental effects on children. Few evidence-based interventions exist to address these complex issues in Sub-Saharan Africa. This mixed methods study explores the potential of a family-based intervention to reduce...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction Few evidence-based interventions exist to support parenting and child mental health during the process of caregiver HIV status disclosure in sub-Saharan Africa. A secondary analysis of a randomized-controlled trial was conducted to examine the role of family-based intervention versus usual social work care (care as usual) in supporting...
Chapter
Full-text available
A major challenge of research on the work-family interface was to understand the complex linkages between women, men, work, and family. The key breakthrough was shattering deeply entrenched gender myths, most centrally that biology defines male and female roles in work and family. Seven potent myths have shaped the growth of the dual-earner family:...
Article
Full-text available
Background The child protection community is increasingly focused on developing tools to assess threats to child protection and the basic security needs and rights of children and families living in adverse circumstances. Although tremendous advances have been made to improve measurement of individual child health status or household functioning f...
Article
Trauma from witnessing events such as bombings and killings as well as direct victimization or participation in violence has been associated with psychosocial distress and poor mental health among war-exposed children and adolescents. This study examines the relationship between caregiver mental health and child internalizing (anxiety and depressio...
Article
Purpose: Faculty with high vitality are essential to the missions of academic health centers (AHCs). Because little is known about how to measure or enhance faculty vitality, the authors assessed current faculty vitality and identified its predictors. Method: In a stratified random sample of 26 nationally representative U.S. AHCs, the authors surv...
Article
War-affected youth often suffer from multiple co-occurring mental health problems. These youth often live in low-resource settings where it may be infeasible to provide mental health services that simultaneously address all of these co-occurring mental health issues. It is therefore important to identify the areas where targeted interventions would...
Article
Introduction: The aims of this study were to a) describe the quantity and quality of faculty mentoring in U.S. academic health centers, b) measure associations between mentoring and 12 dimensions that reflect the culture of academic health centers, and c) assess whether mentoring predicts seriously contemplating leaving one’s institution. Methods:...
Article
Objective Youth in war-affected regions are at risk for poor psychological, social, and educational outcomes. Effective interventions are needed to improve mental health, social behavior, and school functioning. This randomized controlled trial tested the effectiveness of a 10-session cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)-based group mental health int...
Article
Mental health problems are linked to violence exposures such as witnessing or participating in war-related activities. Of particular concern is whether such exposure perpetuates risk of violent behavior. Externalizing problems have received limited attention in research on war-affected youth. Three waves of data (2002-2008) from a prospective longi...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: The objective of this study is to assess the feasibility and acceptability of an intervention to reduce mental health problems and bolster resilience among children living in households affected by caregiver HIV in Rwanda. Design: Pre-post design, including 6-month follow-up. Methods: The Family Strengthening Intervention (FSI) aims...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: To evaluate sustained improvements six months after a 40-session, in-school computer attention training intervention using neurofeedback (NF) or cognitive training (CT) administered to 7–11 year olds with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Methods: One hundred four children were randomly assigned to receive NF, CT, or a co...
Article
Full-text available
To evaluate the efficacy of 2 computer attention training systems administered in school for children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Children in second and fourth grade with a diagnosis of ADHD (n = 104) were randomly assigned to neurofeedback (NF) (n = 34), cognitive training (CT) (n = 34), or control (n = 36) conditions. A...
Conference Paper
104 2nd and 4th graders with ADHD were randomized into three groups: neurofeedback (NF), cognitive training (CT) and waitlist control (WLC). Intervention groups received 40 sessions over 6 months of computer training in school. Efficacy was evaluated by: parent report (Conners 3-Parent), classroom observation (Behavioral Observation of Students in...
Conference Paper
Background: Worldwide, over one billion children and adolescents live in war-affected regions. These youth represent a uniquely vulnerable population at heightened risk of developing mental health problems, interpersonal difficulties and impairments in daily functioning. This study tested the effectiveness of a stabilization and skills-focused ment...
Conference Paper
PURPOSE: This study examined the relationship between multiple measures of socioeconomic position (SEP) and depressive symptoms amongst internally displaced (IDP) Haitian women living in post-earthquake camps. STUDY POPULATION/DATA: Using a cross-sectional design, female heads of households (N=541) were selected from a stratified random sample of 1...
Article
Full-text available
Observational measures can add objective data to both research and clinical evaluations of children’s behavior in the classroom. However, they pose challenges for training and attaining high levels of interrater reliability between observers. The Behavioral Observation of Students in Schools (BOSS) is a commonly used school-based observation instru...
Article
Background: Worldwide, over one billion children and adolescents live in war-affected settings. At present, only limited research has investigated linkages between disrupted social ecology and adverse mental health outcomes among war-affected youth. In this study, we examine three community-level characteristics - social disorder and collective ef...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Former child soldiers are at risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); however, the trajectory of symptoms has yet to be examined. Aims: The risk and protective factors associated with PTSD symptom change among former child soldiers in Sierra Leone were investigated. Method: Data from 243 former child soldiers (mean age...
Article
A diverse medical school faculty is critical to preparing physicians to provide quality care to an increasingly diverse nation. The authors sought to compare experiences of underrepresented in medicine minority (URMM) faculty with those of non-URMM faculty in a nationally representative sample of medical schools. In 2007-2009, the authors surveyed...
Article
Three waves of data from a prospective longitudinal study in Sierra Leone were used to examine internalizing trajectories in 529 war-affected youth (ages 10–17 at baseline; 25% female). Latent class growth analyses identified 4 trajectories: A large majority of youth maintained lower levels of internalizing problems (41.4%) or significantly improve...