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My research interests have focused on understanding how specific child adjustment problems, such as aggression and antisocial behavior, are associated with exposure to family conflict and violence. Understanding how violence exerts its detrimental effects on children is central to developing effective interventions, which is a second emphasis of my research. Much of this research has been conducted in collaboration with my colleague and co-faculty member at SMU, Dr. Ernest Jouriles. Finally, and more recently, given that children’s perceptions of events are often as important as the events themselves, I am interested in the role of children’s subjective experiences of interparent conflict and violence as determinants of child adjustment.
McDonald, R., Jouriles, E. N., Rosenfield, D., & Leahy, M. M. (2012). Children’s questions about interparent conflict and violence: What’s a mother to say? Journal of Family Psychology, 26, 95-104.
McDonald, R., Dodson, M. C., Rosenfield, D., Jouriles, E. N. (2011). Effects of a parenting intervention on features of psychopathy in children. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 39, 1013-1023.
McDonald, R., Jouriles, E. N., Rosenfield, D., Corbitt-Shindler, D. (2011). Predictors of domestically violent men's aggression toward children: A prospective study. Journal of Family Psychology, 25, 11-18.
Jouriles, E. N., McDonald, R., Norwood, W. D., Spiller, L. C., Stephens, N., & Ehrensaft, M. (2010) Improving parenting in families referred for child maltreatment: A randomized controlled trial examining effects of Project Support. Journal of Family Psychology, 24-338.
Minze, L. C., McDonald, R., Rosentraub, E. L., & Jouriles, E. N. (2010). Making sense of family conflict: Intimate partner violence and preschoolers’ externalizing problems. Journal of Family Psychology, 24, 5-11.
Jouriles, E. N., McDonald, R., Rosenfield, D., Stephens, N., Corbitt-Shindler, D., & Miller, P. C. (2009). Reducing Conduct Problems among Children Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence: A Randomized Clinical Trial Examining Effects of Project Support. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 77, 705-717
McDonald, R. Jouriles, E. N., Tart, C. D. & Minze, L. C. (2009). Children’s adjustment problems in families characterized by men’s severe violence toward women: Does other family violence matter? Child Abuse and Neglect, 33, 94-101.
McDonald, R. M., & Skopp, N. A. (2008). Cultural diversity and children exposed to family violence: Issues in adapting interventions. Protecting Children, 22, 32-44.