Department of Psychology

Family Research Center

Family Research Center

The mission of the Family Research Center is to advance and disseminate scientific knowledge on family functioning. We are dedicated to understanding and serving families in the Dallas Metroplex, but the impact of our research is far reaching, with research findings and interventions being utilized across the country and also internationally.

Through our research, and in collaboration with area agencies, we provide vital support to victims of interpersonal violence, children who witness such violence, children who are abused, and teens and young adults who experience physical, emotional, and sexual violence in their own interpersonal relationships. 

The Family Research Center is housed within the Department of Psychology at Southern Methodist University and is co-directed by Professors Ernie Jouriles and Renee McDonald. Drs. Jouriles and McDonald bring a combined 50 years of experience to the center. 

Learn more about our current research projects by clicking here.


Volunteer for a research study
Want to be involved in some of the exciting research here at the Family Research Center? Please check out our Research page to see which of our studies are currently seeking participants.

Interested in joining us as a Research Assistant?
http://my.yapp.us/SMURAWe're looking for highly motivated students to join our team! You'll gain crucial experience for graduate school, boost your resume, and earn course credit for your work. Email Nicole Levy to learn more about the roles and responsibilities of the position. You can also download our phone app specifically for prospective Research Assistants by snapping the QR code to the left with your phone scanner. Visit http://my.yapp.us/SMURA on your mobile safari.

  • Drs. Jouriles & McDonald
    Meet Our Co-Founders

    Drs. Ernie Jouriles and Renee McDonald are co-founders and co-directors of the Family Research Center, a psychology research laboratory located on the Southern Methodist University Campus. 

    Learn more

  • SMU Psychology
    Psychology at SMU

    The Department of Psychology at SMU offers an undergraduate degree in psychology and a doctoral degree in clinical psychology. 

  • Project Support
    Parenting Program "Project Support"

    Project Support addresses the issues that family violence causes for children of abused mothers and children who have been maltreated.