Worcester State University
Psychology Department

 

Champika K. Soysa, PhD
Professor

Contact Information
Office: Sullivan 241G
Phone: (508) 929-8703
Email: csoysa@worcester.edu

Education
Graduate School
Clark University- Ph.D.
Specialization: Clinical Psychology

Undergraduate Degree and Schools
Mount Holyoke College, A.B., Phi Beta Kappa
Indraprastha College, Delhi, India, First Class Honors

 

Area of Specialization/Academic Interests
My main research interests are in clinical psychology and diversity issues (e.g. race, class, gender, nationality, culture, and sexuality).  My own research is on cultural features of posttraumatic stress responses to collective trauma such as war and natural disaster.  I engage in undergraduate research with both honors and independent study students, examining the correlates of stress, depression, anxiety, social networking, college adjustment, and other psychological outcomes.  More recently, my research collaborations with students have included the investigation of positive influences on our mental states, such as mindfulness.

Bio and/or Professional Highlights
- Boston Consortium on Gender and Security (April 2011). Women in the Sri Lankan War and Peace-Building Processes.
- Aaron Beck Institute for the Study of Cognitive Psychology, Assumption College (May 2011): Disaster and Mental Health.
- Lemuel Shattuck Hospital, Jamaica Plain, Grand Rounds (February, 2010).  Haiti 2010 Earthquake:  Issues and Interventions in Massachusetts.
- Commencement Speaker 2006: Worcester State College
- American Institute for Sri Lankan Studies: Research Mentorship Grant (2006)

 

Scholarly Activity

 

Recent Publications (Students in bold)

Soysa, C. K. & Gardner, J. M. (2013). Social Capital, Self-Esteem, Popularity, Need for Accessibility to Friends, and Stress Predict Cyber Technology Use. International Journal of Cyber Behavior Psychology and Learning 3(4), 28-43. doi: 10.4018/ijcbpl.2013100102

Soysa, C. K. & Wilcomb, C. J. (2013). Mindfulness, self-compassion, self-efficacy, and gender as predictors of depression, anxiety, stress, and well-being. Mindfulness, doi 10.1007/s12671-013-0247-1 

Soysa, C. K. (2013). War and tsunami PTSD responses in Sri Lankan children: Primacy of reexperiencing and arousal compared to avoidance-numbing. Journal of Aggression,Maltreatment, and Trauma, 22(8), 896-915.

Soysa, C. K., Dunn, D. S., Dottolo, A. L., Burns-Glover, A. L., & Gurung, R. A. R. (2013). Orchestrating authorship: Teaching writing across the psychology curriculum. Teaching of Psychology, 40(2), 88-97. 

De Mel, N., Samuel, K., & Soysa, C. K. (2012). Ethnopolitical conflict in Sri Lanka: Trajectories and transformations. In D. Landis and R. D. Albert (Eds.) The handbook of ethnic conflict: International perspectives. Springer.

Soysa, C. K. (2010). Psychosocial perspectives of the Sri Lankan tsunami experience. In L. K. Fuller (Ed.), Tsunami communication (pp. 17-32). Hampton Press.

Recent Conference Presentations (Students in bold)

Soysa, C. K. & Dottolo, A. L. Likert scale vs. emoticon response errors in paper-based vs. online surveys  Poster accepted for presentation at the Teaching Institute, Association for Psychological Science annual convention, San Francisco, CA, May 2014. 

Soysa, C. K., Lapoint, S., Kahn, A., Halfpenny, C., Fant, K. & Dawson, L. Perfectionistic dissatisfaction and high standards mediate the LOC – college adjustment relationship. Poster accepted for presentation at the Association for Psychological Science annual convention, San Francisco, CA, May 2014.

Soysa, C. K., Lapoint, S. O., Kahn, A., Fant, K., Halfpenny, C., & Chinnock, G. (2014, March). Self-efficacy and perfectionist dissatisfaction but not self-esteem predict college adjustment. Poster presented at the Eastern Psychological Association annual convention, Boston, MA. 

Lapoint, S., Soysa, C. K., McKenna, C., Kabasinsky, A., Wheeler, K. (2013, August). Dissatisfaction and high standards not LOC predict stress and well-being.  Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Honolulu, HI.

Soysa, C.K., Lapoint, S., Lahikainen, K., Fitzpatrick, P., & McKenna, C. (2013, August). Psycho-educational outcomes in underprivileged students: Cultural-capital and self-esteem. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Honolulu, HI.

Soysa, C.K. & Fitzpatrick, P. (2013, August). Writing in Introductory Psychology: Teaching text, technology, and transdisciplinarity.  Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Honolulu, HI. 

Lapoint, S. & Soysa, C. K. (2013, May). Great expectations: Perfectionism and LOC as social-cognitive predictors of college adjustment. Poster presented at the Association for Psychological Science annual convention, Washington, D.C.

Soysa, C. K. & Lahikainen, K. (2013, May). Teaching the psychological dimensions of mindfulness benefits public and private college students. Poster presented at the Teaching Institute, Association for Psychological Science annual convention, Washington, D.C. 

Wilcomb, C. J., McKenna, C., Lapoint, S., & Soysa, C. K. (2013, May). Mindfulness and self-compassion but not self-efficacy predict depression and anxiety: Gendered patterns.  Poster presented at the Association for Psychological Science annual convention, Washington, D.C.

Lapoint, S. & Soysa, C. K. (2013, March). Great expectations: Perfectionism and locus of control predict college adjustment. Poster presented at the Eastern Psychological Association annual conference, New York, NY. 

Lahikainen, K. & Soysa, C. K. (2012, October). Teaching evidence-based practices of Mindfulness. Workshop conducted at the annual meeting of the National Organization of Human Services conference, Milwaukee, WI.

Soysa, C. K., Lahikainen, K., Kabasinsky, A., Contreras, E., Lapoint, S., & McKenna, C. (2012, October). Benefits of teaching mindfulness to students in the helping professions. Poster presented at the New England Psychological Association annual conference, Worcester, MA. 

Wilcomb, C. J., Borglund, E., Lapoint, S., McKenna, C., & Soysa, C. K. (2012, October). Mindfulness, self-compassion, and self-efficacy are gendered predictors of well-being. Poster presented at the New England Psychological Association annual conference, Worcester, MA.

Soysa, C. K. (2012, August). Deconstructing personality theory by analyzing obstacles to education at a regional university. In C. K. Soysa (Chair), A pedagogical toolkit to engage working class students in higher education.  Symposium presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Orlando, FL.  

Soysa, C. K., Wilcomb, C. J., Gardner, J. M., Borglund, E., & Reiszner, V. (2012, August). Prediction vs. reduction of stress: Technology usage and mindfulness vs. sound exposure. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Orlando, FL.

Gardner, J. M., Reiszner, V., & Soysa, C. K. (2012, May). Self-esteem, social capital, popularity, and need for accessibility predict technology addictions. Poster presented at theAssociation for Psychological Science annual conference, Chicago, IL. 

Soysa, C. K., Wilcomb, C. J., & Borglund, E. (2012, May). Mindfulness, self-compassion, and self-efficacy as predictors of stress. Poster presented at the Association for Psychological Science annual conference, Chicago, IL.

Wilcomb, C. J., Borglund, E., Soysa, C. K. (2012, May). Well-being: Mindfulness, self-compassion, and self-efficacy as predictors. Poster presented at the Association for Psychological Science annual conference, Chicago, IL. 

Gardner, J. M., & Soysa, C. K. (2012, March). Stress and well-being: Relationships with social capital, self-esteem, and technology use. Poster presented at the Eastern Psychological Association annual conference, Pittsburg, PA.

Soysa, C. K., Gardner, J. M., Reiszner, V. (2012, March). Communication and entertainment technology use in relation to self-esteem and popularity. Poster presented at the Eastern Psychological Association annual conference, Pittsburg, PA. 

 Wilcomb, C. J., & Soysa, C. K. (2012, March). Stress and well-being: Relationships with mindfulness, self-compassion, and self-efficacy. Poster presented at the Eastern Psychological Association annual conference, Pittsburg, PA.

Courses Taught
General Psychology
Theories of Personality
Abnormal Psychology
Seminar in Mental Health
Special Topics: Movies and Madness

 
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