Learn More

Associate Professor, Psychology

Tara Dumas, PhD
My teaching focuses largely on applying psychological principles to help promote health and well-being across differing populations. I teach courses on health psychology, adolescent risk behaviours and statistics, among others.

Summary of Research:

  • My research program focuses on social contributions to health-risk behaviour in adolescence and emerging adulthood.
  • Much of my research focuses on the multifaceted role of peer influence and peer group dynamic on alcohol use and related risks. I recently conducted the first longitudinal study on university students’ intact drinking groups to examine how group factors, including drinking norms and individuals’ status within the group predict consumption patterns over time. Other current research aims to apply these findings to evidence-based intervention programming.
    • Selected article: Dumas, Davis, Merrin, Puccia, & Blustein (2018). If you’re high status and you know it: Teasing apart the within- and between-person effects of peer- and self-reported status in the drinking group on alcohol-related outcomes. Psychology of Addictive Behavior 
  • I also collaborate with colleagues from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health on research pertaining to sexual violence and victimization in licensed drinking establishments, for which we recently received a CIHR Project Grant (2018-2021).
    • Selected article: Graham, Bernards, Abbey, Dumas & Wells (2017). When women do not want it: Young female bargoers’ experiences with and responses to sexual harassment in social drinking contexts. Violence Against Women
  • Another stream of research examines youth risk behaviour in an online context.
    • Selected article: Dumas, Maxwell-Smith, Davis & Guilietti (2017). Lying or longing for likes? Narcissism, peer belonging, loneliness and normative versus deceptive like-seeking on Instagram in emerging adulthood. Computers in Human Behavior.