Acacia Parks, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Psychology


Reed College, B.A.
University of Pennsylvania, M.A, Ph.D.


Office: Bates Hall 215
330-569-5229

Education

B.A., Psychology, Reed College, Portland, OR, January 2003
M.A., Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, May 2004
Ph.D., Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, May 2009

Teaching Interests

Abnormal, Clinical, Community, Positive, and Health Psychology. Research Methods and Psychological Testing/Assessment. Critical Writing.

Research Interests

Psychological interventions for increasing happiness in non-clinical and clinical populations using innovative modes of implementation, including websites, smartphone apps, and self-help books. Ambulatory assessment of health, both mental (e.g. mood, life satisfaction) and physical (e.g. physical activity levels, heart rate variability). Characteristics, attitudes, and naturalistic behaviors of happiness seekers.

Teaching Experience

Primary Instructor

  • Positive Psychology
    • University of Pennsylvania, Summer 2006, Summer 2007, Fall 2007, Spring 2010
    • Duquesne University, Spring 2010 (online)
    • Reed College, Spring 2011
    • Hiram College, Spring 2012, Spring 2013
  • Advanced Seminar: Positive Interventions
    • University of Pennsylvania, Summer 2008, Spring 2010, Summer 2010
  • Abnormal Psychology
    • Hiram College, Fall 2011, Fall 2012
  • Clinical Psychology
    • Hiram College, Spring 2012, Fall 2012
  • Research Methods
    • Hiram College, Spring 2012, Spring 2013
  • Psychological Testing
    • Hiram College, Fall 2011, Fall 2012
  • Junior Seminar (Advanced Stats & Methods)
    • Hiram College, Spring 2013
  • Health Psychology
    • Reed College, Fall 2010
  • Research Experience in Positive Psychology
    • University of Pennsylvania, Fall 2009, Spring 2009, Spring 2010
    • Reed College, Spring 2011
  • Personality
    • Reed College, Spring 2011
  • Critical Writing
    • University of Pennsylvania, Fall 2008, Spring 2009
    • Hiram College, Fall 2011

Co-Instructor

  • Introduction to Psychology (with Natasha Fedotova)
    • University of Pennsylvania, Summer 2008, Fall 2008
  • Social Psychology (with Natasha Fedotova)
    • University of Pennsylvania, Summer 2009

Teaching Assistant

  • Abnormal Psychology (instructor: Marjan Holloway)
    • University of Pennsylvania, Spring 2005
  • Learning (instructor: Robert Rescorla)
    • University of Pennsylvania, Fall 2004

Professional Experience

  • Ad Hoc Reviewer, Journal of Medical Internet Research, 2011-present
  • Journal of Mental Health, 2010-present
  • Journal of Positive Psychology, 2006-2009
  • Associate Editor, Journal of Positive Psychology, 2009-present
  • Honors Examiner, Department of Psychology, Swarthmore College, 2009 & 2011
  • Editorial Consultant, Wiley & Sons, Psychology Textbook Division, July 2010
  • Reviewer, Society for Teaching of Psychology APA Convention Program, 2009
  • List Moderator, APA Positive Psychology and Friends of Positive Psychology Listserves, 2004-2009
  • Program Coordinator, Seligman Lab Summer Fellowship Program, University of Pennsylvania, 2003-2006
  • Human Subjects Research Committee, Reed College, 2001-2002

Clinical Experience

  • Behavior Therapy Anxiety Disorders Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, 2006-2007
    • Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia (Philadelphia, PA). Supervisor: Alan Goldstein, Ph.D.
    • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (Bala Cynwyd, PA). Supervisors: Jon Grayson, Ph.D. & Linda Welsh, Ph.D.
  • APA Ethics Training Seminar, University of Pennsylvania. Fall 2003 & Fall 2006.Instructor: Melissa Hunt, Ph.D.
  • Cognitive Therapy for Depression Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.
    Supervisors: Rob DeRubeis, Ph.D. & Seth Gillihan, M.A.
  • Assessment Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.
    Supervisor: Melissa Hunt, Ph.D.
    • Acquired basic skills in interviewing (SCID-I, SCID-II and ADIS) and Assessment (WAIS-III, WMS, WIAT, MMPI-2, NEO, MIPS, Rorschach).

Grants and Competitive Fellowships

  • Primary Investigator, "Stress and time usage," Stillman-Drake Grant for Faculty Development, Reed College, 2010-2011.
  • Consultant, "Development of Positive Psychotherapy for Smoking Cessation," R01 DA027639-01, pending final approval by NIH/NCI (Impact/Priority Score: 16, Percentile 2.0). Start date: 12/1/2010-11/30/12. Total costs: $1,220,956. PI: Christopher Kahler, Brown University.
  • Co-investigator, "Attitudes about happiness," Summer Research Grant, University of Pennsylvania, 2010. $500. Co-investigator: Natasha Fedotova.
  • Primary Grant Holder, "Penn Teaches Resilience," Course Development Grant, Netter Center for Community Partnerships, University of Pennsylvania, 2008-2010, $4000.
  • Critical Writing Teaching Fellowship, University of Pennsylvania, 2008-2009.
  • Graduate Research Fellowship, National Science Foundation, 2004-2007.
  • Primary Investigator, "Preventing depression in college freshman: Testing the efficacy of a 3-week bibliotherapy workshop." Student Research Grant, Northwest Health Foundation, 2002-2003. $2800. Advisor: Keith Herman.

Publications

Peer-Reviewed Articles

Chapters

  • Parks, A.C. (in press). Self-help interventions in positive psychology. To appear in S. Joseph (Ed.), Positive Psychology in Practice, 2nd Edition. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

  • Kranzler, A., Hoffman, L.J., Parks, A.C. & Gillham, J.E. (2014). Innovative models of dissemination for school-based interventions that promote youth resilience and  well-being. In R. Gilman, Huebner, E.S. & Furlong, M.J. (Eds.), The Handbook of Positive Psychology in Schools, 2nd Edition. London: Routledge.
  • Parks, A.C. & Biswas-Diener, R. (2013). Positive interventions: Past, present and future. In T. Kashdan & Ciarrochi, J. (Eds.), Mindfulness, Acceptance and Positive Psychology: The Seven Foundations of Well-Being. Oakland, CA: Context Press.
  • Parks, A.C. & Ross, V. (in press). Writing critically about personal growth: A ‘writing in the disciplines’ course on happiness. To appear in A.C. Parks (Ed.), Positive Psychology in Higher Education. London: Taylor and Francis.
  • Parks, A.C., Schueller, S. & Tasimi, A. (in press). Increasing happiness in the general population: Empirically Supported Self-Help? To appear in I. Boniwell & S. David (Eds.), Oxford Handbook of Happiness. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Parks, A.C. (2011). The state of positive psychology in higher education: Introduction to the special issue. Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 429-431.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2009). Applied positive psychology. In S.J. Lopez (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Positive Psychology (pp. 58-62). Boston: Blackwell Publishing.
  • Parks, A. & Seligman, M.E.P. (2009). Positive psychology: Human happiness. In J. Weil, D. Blumel, S. Malmoli, & J. Netting (Eds.), Yearbook of Science & Technology: 2009 (pp. 308-309). New York: McGraw-Hill.
  • Parks, A.C. & Seligman, M.E.P. (2007). 8-week group Positive Psychotherapy (PPT) Manual. Unpublished manual, available by request.
  • Seligman, M.E.P., Parks, A.C. & Steen, T. (2005). A balanced psychology and a full life. In F. Huppert, N. Baylis, & B. Keverne (Eds.), The science of well-being (pp. 275-283). New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Seligman, M.E.P., Parks, A.C., & Steen. T (2004). A balanced psychology and a full life. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B, 359(1449), 1379-1381.
  • Parks, A.C. & Herman, K.C. (2003). A sociocultural perspective on the primary prevention of depression. Prevention and Treatment, 6(1).

Papers In Active Preparation/Under Review

  • Parks, A.C. (2012). Group positive psychotherapy for mild-moderate depressive symptoms in young adults. Revise-resubmit.

Editorial Projects and Book Reviews

  • Parks, A.C. (Ed.). (in preparation). The Wiley-Blackwell handbook of positive psychological interventions. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Parks, A.C. (Ed.). (in press). Positive psychology in higher education. London: Routledge. http://www.taylorandfrancis.com/books/details/9780415631297/
  • Froh, J. J.,& Parks, A.C. (Eds.). (in press). Activities for teaching positive psychology: A guide for instructors. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. http://www.apa.org/pubs/books/4316148.aspx
  • Parks, A.C. (Ed.) (2011). Positive psychology in higher education [Special Issue]. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(6).
  • Parks, A.C.(2011). [Review of the book Curious?]. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 230-233.

Conference Presentations

Positive Interventions and Self-Help – General

  • Parks, A.C., Szanto, R.K., & Canada, K. (2013). Impact of attitudes towards the pursuit of happiness on response to happiness-based self-help. Poster submitted for presentation at the 14th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.
  • Parks, A.C. (2011). Positive Interventions: New Frontiers(Symposium Chair). Presented at the World Congress of the International Positive Psychology Association, Philadelphia, PA, July 2011
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2007). Exercises for increasing positive emotion in therapy and at home. Symposium talk presented at the 19th Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, May 2007.
  • Schueller, S.M., Parks-Sheiner, A.C., & Seligman, M. (2008). Positive psychology to combat depression: Using structural equation modeling to assess change during a savoring intervention. Poster presented at the 42nd Annual Convention of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, November 2008.

Positive Interventions and Self-Help – Internet and Smartphone-Based

  • Parks, A.C., Heiss, M., & Mossey, R. (2011). Using the internet to test theoretical questions about positive interventions. Talk presented at the World Congress of the International Positive Psychology Association, July 2011.
  • Schueller, S. & Parks, A.C. (2011). Disseminating self-help: Positive psychology exercises in an open online trial. Talk presented at the 5th Meeting of the International Society for Research on Internet Interventions, April, 2011.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. & Sockol, L. (2010). Implementing positive psychotherapy online. Talk presented at the 44th Annual Convention of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, November 2010.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2010). Internet-based self-help for nonclinical populations. Talk presented at the 118th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, August 2010.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2010). Towards a model of empirically supported self-help: Online positive psychotherapy. Poster presented at the 22nd Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, May 2010.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2009). Balancing the tension between internal and external validity in online intervention research. Talk presented at Web Research for Beginners: An Online Conference, June 2009.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2008). Implementing positive interventions via the world wide web (Symposium Chair). Talk: Testing happiness-increasing exercises individually and in packages over the web. Presented at the 4th European Conference on Positive Psychology, July 2008.

Positive Interventions and Self-Help – Book-Based

  • Szanto, R.K. & Parks, A.C. (2013). Comparing the benefits of positive versus cognitive- behavioral self-help strategies. Poster submitted for presentation at the 14th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.
  • Szanto, R.K. & Parks, A.C. (2012). You could be happy: The effects of positive and cognitive bibliotherapy on well-being. Talk presented at the 26th Annual Ohio Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference, April 2012.
  • Parks, A.C. & Herman, K.C. (2003). Developing a brief and inexpensive method of preventing depression. Talk presented at the 83rd Annual Convention of the Western Psychological Association, May 2003.
  • Parks, A.C. (2004). Preventing depression with bibliotherapy. Poster presented at the 16th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Society, May 2004.
  • Parks, A.C. (2003). Promoting subjective happiness during the transition to college. Poster presented at the 2nd International Positive Psychology Summit, October 2003.

Positive Psychotherapy

  • Kahler, C.W., Spillane, N.S., Clerkin, E., Brown, R.A., & Parks, A. (2011).  Development of positive psychotherapy for smoking cessation. Talk presented at the Second World Congress of the International Positive Psychology Association, Philadelphia, PA, July 2011. 
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2010). Group positive psychotherapy. Talk presented at the 118th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, August 2010.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2009). An overview of group positive psychotherapy for depression. Talk presented at the 43rd Annual Convention of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, November 2009.
  • Parks-Sheiner, A.C. (2007). Positive psychotherapy. Symposium talk presented at the 41st Annual Convention of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, November 2007.
  • Parks, A.C. & Seligman, M.E.P. (2005). Treating mild/moderate depressive symptoms with a positive intervention: 1-year follow-up. Poster presented at the 17th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Society, May 2005.         
  • Parks, A.C. (2004). Treating mild/moderate depressive symptoms with a positive intervention. Poster presented at the 3rd International Positive Psychology Summit, October 2004.

Mentored Student Research Projects

  • Wong, H. & Parks, A.C. (2013). Designing a method for inducing gratitude in the laboratory. Poster submitted for presentation at the 14th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.
  • Wong, H.Y. & Parks, A.C. (2012). A measure of patience. Talk presented at the 26th Annual Ohio Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference, April 2012.
  • Schumaker, S., Picolo, M., Miller, S., Shauver, L., & Parks, A.C. (2012). What grabs your attention? Talk presented at the 26th Annual Ohio Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference, April 2012.
  • Kranzler, A., Parks-Sheiner, A.C., & Gillham, J.E. (2010). Penn Teaches Resilience: An innovative service-based research experience course. Poster presented at the 22nd Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, May 2010.
  • Parks, A.C. & Victor, H.A. (2006). Are positive and negative moods causes or correlates of flow? Poster presented at the 18th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Society, May 2006.
  • Cabo, R., Kleiman, M., McCauley, A. & Parks, A.C. (2004). Mood and flow. Poster presented at the 16th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Society, May 2004.

Undergraduate Work – Achievement Strategies and Goals

  • Parks, A.C., Waichunas, D.E., Walker, S.N., Edelson, N.S., & Oleson, K.C. (2002). Depression and social life in self-handicappers: An examination of possible relationships. Talk presented at the Oregon Academy of Sciences Conference, February 2002.
  • Parks, A.C. & Oleson, K.C. (2003). Self-handicappers’ and subjective overachievers’ achievement goals: Exploring the mastery-approach/mastery-avoidance distinction. Poster presented at the 15th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Society, May 2003.
  • Oleson, K. C., Bellet, M. J., Brockmyer, B. I., Clark, J. A., Kinsey, J. L. C., Masinovsky, S. M., Parks, A. C., Pierson, R. M., Piff, P. K., Tanner, N. B., Waichunas, D. E., & Weingarten, E. (2003). Overachievers’, self-handicappers’, and defensive pessimists' achievement goals. Poster presented at the 4th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, February 2003.

Grants and Competitive Fellowships

Funded

  • Primary Investigator, “Stress and time usage,” Stillman-Drake Grant for Faculty Development, Reed College, 2010-2011. $1000.
  • Consultant, “Development of Positive Psychotherapy for Smoking Cessation,” R01 DA027639-01,12/1/2010-11/30/12. $1,220, 956. PI: Christopher Kahler, Brown University.           
  • Co-investigator, “Attitudes about happiness,” Summer Research Grant, University of Pennsylvania, 2010. $500. Co-investigator: Natasha Fedotova.
  • Primary Grant Holder, “Penn Teaches Resilience,” Course Development Grant, Netter Center for Community Partnerships, University of Pennsylvania, 2008-2010, $4000.          
  • Critical Writing Teaching Fellowship, University of Pennsylvania, 2008-2009.
  • Graduate Research Fellowship, National Science Foundation, 2004-2007.
  • Primary Investigator, “Preventing depression in college freshman: Testing the efficacy of a 3-week bibliotherapy workshop.”Student Research Grant, Northwest Health Foundation, 2002-2003. $2800. Advisor: Keith Herman.

Unfunded

  • Primary Investigator, “Assessing the physiological and behavioral underpinnings of gratitude: Are increases in gratitude predictive of changes in heart-rate variability, skin conductance, and physical activity?” Greater Good Foundation: The Science and Practice of Gratitude, Spring 2012. Proposal made it to the last stage of the competition, $199,968.33

Awards and Honors

  • Teaching Certificate, Center for Teaching & Learning, Univ. of Pennsylvania, 2009.
  • Travel Fellowship, APA Advanced Training Institute in Web-Based Research, Univ. of
  • Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA, July 2007
  • Associate Membership, Sigma Xi Honor Society, 2004 - present
  • Poster Award, International Positive Psychology Summit, 2003
  • Participating Scholar, Positive Psychology Summer Institute, 2003, 2004, & 2005
  • Travel Fellow, International Positive Psychology Summit, 2002 & 2003
  • Commendation for Academic Excellence, Reed College, 2002
  • NSF-AIRE Student Mentor Award, Reed College

 

Clinical Experience

Behavior Therapy Anxiety Disorders Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, 2006-2007.

  • Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia (Philadelphia, PA). Supervisor: Alan Goldstein, Ph.D.
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (Bala Cynwyd, PA). Supervisors: Jon Grayson, Ph.D. & Linda Welsh, Ph.D.

APA Ethics Training Seminar, University of Pennsylvania. Fall 2003 & Fall 2006.

      Instructor: Melissa Hunt, Ph.D.

Cognitive Therapy for Depression Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.

      Supervisors: Rob DeRubeis, Ph.D. & Seth Gillihan, M.A.

Assessment Practicum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.

      Supervisor: Melissa Hunt, Ph.D.

  • Acquired basic skills in interviewing (SCID-I, SCID-II and ADIS) and assessment (WAIS-III, WMS, WIAT, MMPI-2, NEO, MIPS, Rorschach).

 

Professional Services and Activities

Editorial:

-          Associate Editor, Journal of Positive Psychology, 2009- present.

-          Editorial Consultant, Wiley & Sons, Psychology Textbook Division, July 2010.

Ad Hoc Reviewer:

-         Teaching of Psychology

-          Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (Personality Processes and Individual Differences section)

-          Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being

-          Journal of Medical Internet Research

-          Journal of Mental Health

-          Society for Teaching of Psychology APA Convention Program, 2009

-          APS Student Research Competition and APS Student Grant Competition, 2004

 

External Examiner:

-          Evaluator, Division 17 APA Convention Program, 2012-present

-          Examiner, Honors Examinations, Department of Psychology, Swarthmore College, May 2009, May 2011 & May 2012

-          External Member, Dissertation Committee, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, February 2012

-          Evaluator, Society for Teaching of Psychology APA Convention Program, 2009

-          Evaluator, APS Student Research Competition and APS Student Grant Competition, 2004

 

Committee Work:

-          Assessment Committee, Hiram College, August 2012-present.

-          Steering Committee for the Center for Biomedical Humanities, Hiram College, August 2012-present

-          Lindback & Provost’s Teaching Awards Nominations Committee, University of Pennsylvania, 2008

-          Human Subjects Research Committee, Reed College, 2001-2002

 

Other Misc. Service

-          Faculty Moodle Mentor, Instructional Design, Hiram College, Jan 2012- present

-          List Moderator, APA Positive Psychology and Friends of Positive Psychology Listservs, 2004-2009

-          Program Coordinator, Seligman Lab Summer Fellowship Program, University of Pennsylvania, 2003-2006

 

Professional Affiliations

 

International Positive Psychology Association

American Psychological Association

  • Society for the Teaching of Psychology (Division 2)
  • Society for Personality and Social Psychology (Division 8)
  • Society for Counseling Psychology (Division 17)
    • Positive Psychology SIG
    • Health Psychology SIG

Association for Psychological Science

Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies

International Society for Research on Internet Interventions

Sigma Xi Honor Society

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