David Sbarra

David Sbarra's picture
Real name: 
Ph.D., University of Virginia, 2004

Clinical Internship, University of Wisconsin Department of Psychiatry

B.S., Cornell University, 1996


(520) 626-6426
Psychology 264
Research Interests: 
  • Studying the associations between social relationships and health, especially in cases of divorce.
  • Understanding stress and coping
  • Investigating stress physiology

My research rests at the intersection of clinical, social and health psychology with a primary focus on close relationships and health. Many of my studies focus on how people recover from the stressful life event of divorce. I am the PI on research and training awards from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. My research has been featured in many popular press outlets, including the NY Times, The Atlantic, and on NPR.

Selected Publications: 

Bourassa, K. J., Sbarra, D. A., Caspi, A., & Moffitt, T. E. (2020). Social distancing as a health behavior: County-level movement in the United States during the COVID-19 Pandemic is associated with conventional health behaviors. Annals of Behavioral Medicine online ahead: https://doi.org/10.1093/abm/kaaa049

Manvelian, A., & Sbarra, D. A. (2020). Marital status, close relationships, and all-cause mortality: Results from a 10-year study of nationally representative older adults. Psychosomatic Medicine, 82, 384-392. 

O’Hara, K.L., Grinberg, A.M, Tackman, A.M., Mehl, M.R., & Sbarra, D.A. (2020). Contact with an ex-partner is associated with psychological distress after marital separation. Clinical Psychological Science. Published online ahead May 4, 2020: https://doi.org/10.1177/2167702620916454

Sur, B., Cleary, A., Rohrbaugh, M.J., Ferrer, E., & Sbarra, D.A. (2020). Beyond the “self” in self-regulation: Family interaction modulations situational self-control by adolescent drug users. Journal of Family Psychology. 34(3), 322–332. https://doi.org/10.1037/fam0000598

Bourassa, K. J., Ruiz, J. M., & Sbarra, D. A. (2019). Smoking and physical activity explain the increased mortality risk associated with marital dissolution. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 53, 255-266

Holt-Lunstad, J., Robles, T.F., & Sbarra, D.A. (2017). Advancing social connection as a public health priority in the United States. American Psychologist72, 517-530.

Research Program: