WORKING IN THE REALE-TIME LAB

 *** Dr. Dvorak WILL be accepting new graduate students for Fall 2022***

Both graduate and undergraduate students in our lab have the opportunity to present and publish research, if they wish to do so. 

Undergrad RAs

I accept a limited number of highly motivated undergraduate research assistants to work in our lab. I am particularly interested in undergraduates who plan to pursue post-graduate education. Many of my former undergrad RAs have gone on to grad/med school. I continue to collaborate and publish papers with several of these students. If you are interested in working in our lab, please complete the lab application here.

Graduate Students

I’m often willing to accept one clinical graduate student into our lab each Fall. Students applying to the graduate program who are interested in working in our lab should contact me directly to make me aware of your application. If you'd like a graduate students perspective on our lab, the program, or UCF, you can contact my current grad students (MattRosieDanielAngie, Ardhys, or Emily).  



Statement on Diversity

The Clinical Program as a whole, and our lab in particular, places a strong emphasis on increasing the level of diversity (broadly defined) in our discipline. I would encourage you to address the ways in which you can contribute to diversity in your application letter. This does not specifically mean diversity in the traditional sense (e.g., gender, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, etc.), but also in your approach to understanding diversity, and the ways in which individuals from various backgrounds can form a common understanding and acceptance in the context of our many differences. This does not mean that having a diverse background will increase your chance of admission. However, being able to articulate your approach and acceptance of diversity may. 

My Approach to Mentorship

Graduate students in the lab are, in essence, research project managers. Often my graduate students will oversee a large study in which they are responsible for scheduling lab operations and troubleshooting project issues. I place a lot of trust in my graduate students, and I expect them to be good problem solvers. I see graduate students in our lab as junior colleagues who I will interact with for the rest of our careers. Indeed, if you ask my students, they will tell you that the lab is a collective, and when I refer to the lab, I call it "Our Lab". My graduate students are involved in every decision made in the lab. They offer suggestions on lab protocol, and are even instrumental in helping me select future graduate students. Thus, I am quite selective in the students I am willing to accept. Students who work with me should be:

a) Highly motivated and excited about examining mechanisms of, and interventions for, health-risk behaviors;

b) Eager to present and publish these findings through high quality scientific outlets; and 

c) Interested in developing expertise in a variety of advanced statistical and methodological approaches.

Preference is given to students interested in careers where research is an important component (e.g., academia, research hospitals, major research centers, etc.). As a graduate student member of our lab you can expect to: 

(1) Develop expertise in the theoretical underpinnings of self-regulation and health-risk behaviors; 

(2) Engage in high quality assessment and interventions research; 

(3) Learn to write computer applications and programs for the assessment and intervention of risk-behavior (previous programming experience is not required); 

(4) Gain experience in a host of methodological approaches (e.g., experimental, longitudinal, cross-sectional, and experience sampling/ecological momentary assessment) and advanced statistical analyses (e.g., GLM, Mediation/Moderation, GzLM, Modeling Nested/Longitudinal Data, Advanced Latent Variable Modeling, IRT, Inflated-zero Models, Spatial Analysis, Count/Categorical/Limited DV Models, and much more);

(5) Attend and present research at scientific conferences;

(6) Develop skills in scientific writing;

(7) Publish research in scientific journals; 

(8) Assist in writing (or even write your own) research grants;

(9) Gain experience in reviewing manuscripts submitted for publication;

(10) Supervise undergraduate research assistants;

(11) Have a great time interacting with other burgeoning clinical scientists while developing collaborations that will last throughout your career.

As you can see, I place a strong emphasis on scientific training. I feel that exploring the mechanisms of risky/health compromising behavior, and identifying ways to intervene to reduce this behavior, is interesting and exciting. I seek students who share my enthusiasm for scientific discovery. The process of discovery can be quite rewarding, however, it is also demanding and requires a significant commitment. Thus, individuals who are primarily interested in a career in clinical practice will likely not enjoy working in our lab.


Rob Dvorak

Director REALE-TIME Lab 


Graduate Application Links:

University of Central Florida

UCF College of Graduate Studies

UCF Department of Psychology

UCF Clinical Psychology Program

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