Sara L. Dolan, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience; Associate Dean for Professional Development, Graduate School; Faculty Regent (Core Clinical Faculty)
Psychology & Neuroscience
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Center for Alcohol & Addiction Studies, Brown University
Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, University of Iowa, 2004
Clinical Internship, Division of Substance Abuse, Yale University School of Medicine
M.A., Clinical Psychology, University of Iowa, 1998
B.S., Psychology, Indiana University, 1996
Dr. Dolan joined the Baylor faculty in 2007, after serving as a National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism-funded Postdoctoral Fellow and subsequently a National Cancer Institute-funded faculty member at the Brown University Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies. While at Brown, she also served as a Research Scientist at the Providence Veterans Affairs Medical Center, as well as the Assessment Coordinator at Psychological Associates, in Warwick, RI. Prior to that, she earned her B.S. degree in psychology from Indiana University, followed by both M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Clinical Psychology from the University of Iowa. She then completed her clinical internship at Yale University, in the Division of Substance Abuse. In her spare time, she can be found serving as an alumnae advisor for her sorority on campus, at a Baylor football or men's basketball game, traveling, or volunteering in the community.
Academic Interests and Research
Interests: Neuropsychological functioning and substance abuse treatment, as well as diagnosis and treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI).
My research examines how neuropsychological dysfunction, including problems with memory and executive functions, is related to the etiology of alcohol and substance use disorders and how these issues affect the treatment process and outcome. We study how cognitive functioning (e.g., memory, attention, problem-solving, decision-making) impacts well-being in those with addiction and other mental health disorders. We hope to improve addiction treatments so that those who enter treatment are getting the best treatments for their individual cognitive risk factors. We are currently conducting research on the relationship between craving and neuropsychological functioning in a population of non-psychotic substance-dependent individuals.
Dr. Dolan will not be accepting students in either the PsyD or Ph.D. program for the 2023-2024 cohort
Veterans are returning from combat zones at higher rates than before with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Substance Use Disorder. We are examining how their cognitive abilities, which may be compromised by these disorders, relate to overall psychological functioning and quality of life to improve diagnosis and treatment.
I am NOT accepting students for this research program.
Undergraduates with an interest in this work should consider applying for the VA-CERP internship program (information is here: https://www.baylor.edu/prehealth/index.php?id=93416).
*Greenberg, L.P., Martindale, S.M., Fils-Aimé, L.R., & Dolan, S.L. (2016). Distress tolerance and impulsivity are associated with drug and alcohol use consequences in an online community sample. Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy, 30(1), 50-59. doi: 10.1891/0889-8322.214.171.124
*Greenberg, L.P., Martindale, S.M., Collum, S.P., & Dolan, S.L. (2014). Distress tolerance as a predictor of depressive and posttraumatic stress symptoms in a substance use disorder in-patient treatment sample. Journal of Traumatic Stress Disorders and Treatment, 3(2). doi: 10.4172/2324-8947.1000123.
Dolan SL, Bechara A, Nathan PE. Executive dysfunction as a risk marker for substance abuse: the role of impulsive personality traits. Behav Sci Law. 2008;26(6):799-822. PMID: 19039793.
Dolan SL, Sacco K, Termine A, Seyal AA, Dudas MM, Vessicchio JC, Wexler BE, George TP. Neuropsychological deficits predict treatment failure during smoking cessation in patients with schizophrenia. Schizophr Res. 2004;70:263-75.
Bechara A, Dolan S, Hindes A. Decision-making and addiction (part II): myopia for the future or hypersensitivity to reward? Neuropsychologia. 2002;40(10):1690-705. PMID: 11992657.
See my Google Scholar page for a complete list of publications.
Dolan, S.L. (2004). Addiction. In A. Christensen, R, Martin & J. Smyth (Eds.). Encyclopedia of Health Psychology. New York: Kluwer Academic Publishing.
Dolan, S.L. (2004). Alcoholism. In A. Christensen, R. Martin & J. Smyth (Eds.). Encyclopedia of Health Psychology. New York: Kluwer Academic Publishing.
Nathan, P.E., Stuart, S., & Dolan, S.L. (2003). Research on psychotherapy efficacy and effectiveness: Between Scylla and Charybdis? In A Kazdin (Ed.). Methodological issues and strategies in clinical research, 3rd ed. (pp. 505-546). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Dolan, S.L. & Nathan, P.E. (2001) When one marital partner is an alcoholic. In J. Harvey & A. Wenzel (Eds.). Maintaining and enhancing close relationships: A clinician's guide. Pp. 215-229. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Publishers.
Nathan, P. E., Skinstad, A. H., & Dolan, S.L. (2001). Alcoholism: Psychopathology, etiology, and treatment. In P.B. Sutker & H.E. Adams (Eds.). Comprehensive handbook of psychopathology. (3rd edition), pp. 595-622. New York: Plenum Press.
Nathan, P. E., Skinstad, A. H., & Dolan, S.L. (2000). Clinical Psychology II: Psychological treatments: Research and practice. In K. Pawlik & M.R. Rosenzweig (Eds.). International handbook of psychology. pp. 429-451. London: SAGE Ltd.
Current Psy.D. Students
Zachary Grounds, University of California, San Diego
Haley Mayer, Indiana University
Shianne Andrew, The University of Tulsa
Kiara Leonard, Texas State University
Elizabeth Hernandez, University of Texas, Austin