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Sara Chiara Haden

Associate Professor of Psychology

B.A. Psychology, University of VirginiaM.A. Psychology, Dartmouth Campus, University of Massachusetts Ph.D. Clinical Psychology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech)


Dr. Haden completed her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in 2007 after receiving her M.A. degree in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth in 2002 and her B.A. degree in Psychology and Italian from the University of Virginia in 1999. She completed her APA-accredited internship at the University of Florida in 2007 and served as the Research Postdoctoral Fellow on the Forensic Inpatient Service at NYU/Bellevue Hospital Center during 2007-2008. Dr. Haden's research focuses on the effects of exposure to community violence as well as risk and protective factors involved in the development of aggressive behavior in children. Her clinical experience includes work with survivors of torture and war trauma, psychiatric emergency patients, pediatric HIV clinic clients, primary care patients, mentally ill offenders, and adult male prisoners.

Currently, Dr. Haden has an active research lab comprised of high school, undergraduate, and graduate students interested in learning more about the effects of violence exposure to young urban adults—especially the cycle of trauma, outcomes related to complex trauma experiences, and how income inequality influences families. She collaborates with community agencies working with disadvantaged families. Dr. Haden is a licensed psychologist in New York. In her free time, she provides statistical consulting and tutoring to high school, college, and graduate students, as well as businesses and social science researchers. She lives in Brooklyn with her human and non-human family members. :)


Clinical psychology, cognitive behavioral orientation, motivational interviewing, adult/child/family/forensic assessment, univariate/multivariate statistics, research in trauma and interpersonal violence


Selected Publications:

Haden, S.C., McDonald, S.E., & Murphy, J. (2020). Violence against family pets. In T. Shackelford (Ed.), Sage Handbook of Domestic Violence, Los Angeles, CA: Sage.

Haden, S.C., McDonald, S.E., D’Emilia, W. (2021). Psychology and animal cruelty offenders. In M. Paulino P. Marques, & L. Alho (Eds.), Psychopathy and Criminal Behavior: Current Trends and Challenges, Cambridge, MA: Elsevier Academic Press.

Haden, S.C., & Teitter, K. (2018). Parents who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. The Encyclopedia of Child and Adolescent Development.

Haden, S.C., McDonald, S.E., Ascione, F.R., & Blakelock, H. (2018). An exploratory study of domestic violence: Perpetrators’ reports of violence against animals. Anthrozoos 31(3).

Morel, K. M., Haden, S. C., Meehan, K. B., & Papouchis, N. (2017). Adolescent female aggression: Functions and etiology. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment, & Trauma.

Mulay, A.B., & Haden, S.C. (2017). The relationship between direct violence victimization and arrest history: the mediating role of aggression. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 26(6). 676-690.

Lectures and Presentations



Co-Investigator. National Science Foundation - Increasing the Participation and Advancement of Women in Academic Science and Engineering Careers Women in Science, Institutional Transformation Catalyst (NSF-ADVANCE IT-Catalyst), (Anthony DePass and Lori Knapp Co-Investigators).

Principal Investigator, American Psychological Association (APA)/ Science Directorate's

“Academic Enhancement Initiative,” Promoting Psychological Research and Training on Health

Disparities Issues at Ethnic Minority Serving Institutions, “Community Violence Exposure:

Prevalence and Outcomes among Urban Young Adults.

Recipient, Ph.D. Fellowship. AdvanceVT, National Science Foundation.

Principal Investigator, Association for the Treatment of Sex Abusers (ATSA) Pre-Doctoral

Research Grant, “Aggressive components of sexual aggression.”


Recipient, Sigma Xi Ph.D. Research Award.

Recipient, Safe Zone Recognition Award for Teaching, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Recipient, American Psychology Foundation. Council of Graduate Departments of Psychology (COGDOP) Scholarship.

Nominee, P.E.O. Scholar Award Nominee, Southwestern Virginia Region.

Recipient, Division 53 Society for Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology Research Award.

Professional Affiliations

  • Member, American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Member, APA Division 5: Evaluation, Measurement, and Statistics
  • Member, APA Division 35: Society for the Psychology of Women
  • Member, APA Division 37: Society for Child and Family Policy and Practice
  • Member, APA Division 56: Division of Trauma Psychology
  • Member, Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology