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Welcome! » Faculty & Staff » Dawn Szymanski


Dawn Szymanski

See Also: Curriculum Vitae | Abstracts of Recent Publications

Research Interests

My research interests are primarily in the areas of multicultural-feminist issues, broadly defined (e.g. sexual orientation, gender, race/ethnicity, social class), the impact of external and internalized oppression on psychosocial health, as well as multicultural-feminist theory, therapy, training, and supervision.

Research statement

My overall program of research could be defined as applications of Feminist Therapy Theory to assessment, counseling, supervision, and mental health. Feminist Theory posits that the personal is political, which means that personal difficulties are connected to the political, cultural, social, and economic climate in which people live and that many of the problems experienced by persons with limited power in society can be conceptualized as reactions to oppression. This principle encourages psychologists to attend to the external/socio-cultural factors, such as sexism, heterosexism, and racism which contribute to an individual’s psychological distress, as well as the ways that clients may have internalized negative and limiting attitudes about being a member of a minority group. In addition, Feminist Theory emphasizes the importance of understanding how multiple oppressions and traditional gender role socialization influence psychological well-being. Thus, my research focuses primarily on examining the ways that external and internalized oppressions (e.g., sexism, heterosexism, racism) and traditional gender role socialization impact mental health.

Selected Publications

The Outstanding Major Contribution Award in The Counseling Psychologist for Sexual Objectification of Women 2012, American Psychological Association Division 17 (Counseling Psychology); Co-recipients Erika Carr and Lauren Moffitt

Woman of the Year Award 2012, American Psychological Association Division 17 (Counseling Psychology) Section for the Advancement of Women

Chancellor’s Honors Jefferson Award 2011, University of Tennessee-Knoxville Chancellor’s Office

Fellow, American Psychological Association, Division 17 (Counseling Psychology) 2010, Division 44 (LGBT Issues) 2011, Division 35 (Psychology of Women) 2011

Diversity Leadership Award 2010, University of Tennessee-Knoxville College of Arts and Sciences

Chancellor’s Honors Angie Warren Perkins Award 2010, University of Tennessee-Knoxville Chancellor’s Office

Emerging Leader for Women in Psychology Award 2009, American Psychological Association Committee on Women in Psychology

Chancellor’s Honors LGBT Ally Research Award 2009, University of Tennessee-Knoxville Chancellor’s Office

Psychotherapy with Women Award 2005, 2002, 1999, American Psychological Association Division 35

Selected Publications

Stewart, D. N.,* & Szymanski, D. M. (2012). Young adult women’s reports of their male romantic partner’s pornography use as a correlate of their psychological distress, relationship quality, and sexual satisfaction. Sex Roles, 67, 257-271.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11199-012-0164-0

Szymanski, D. M., & Ikizler, A. S.* (2012). Internalized heterosexism as a mediator in the relationship between gender role conflict, heterosexist discrimination, and depression among sexual minority men. Psychology of Men and Masculinity.

Szymanski, D. M. (2012). Racist events and individual coping styles as predictors of African American activism. Journal of Black Psychology, 38, 342-367.

Travis, C. B., Howerton, D. H*, & Szymanski, D. M. (2012). Risk, uncertainties, and gender stereotypes in health care decisions. Women & Therapy, 35, 1-14.

Hilton, A. N.*, & Szymanski, D. M. (2011). Family dynamics and changes in sibling of origin relationship after lesbian and gay sexual orientation disclosure.  Contemporary Family Therapy, 33, 291-309.

Gupta, A.*, Szymanski, D. M., & Leong, F. (2011). The “Model Minority Myth”: Internalized racialism of positive stereotypes as correlates of psychological distress and attitudes toward help seeking. Asian American Journal of Psychology, 2, 101-114.

Szymanski, D. M., & Obiri, O. M.* (2011). Do religious coping styles moderate or mediate the external and internalized racism-distress links? The Counseling Psychologist, 39, 438-462.

Szymanski, D. M., Moffitt, L. B.*, & Carr, E. R.* (2011). Sexual objectification of women: Advances to theory and research (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 39, 6-38.

Carr, E. R.*, & Szymanski, D. M. (2011). Sexual objectification and substance abuse among young adult women (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 39, 39-66.

Moffitt, L. B.*, & Szymanski, D. M. (2011). Experiencing sexually objectifying environments: A qualitative study (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 39, 67-106.

Szymanski, D. M., Carr, E. R.*, & Moffitt, L. B.* (2011). Sexual objectification of women: Clinical implications and training considerations (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 39,107-126.

Szymanski, D. M., & Balsam, K. F. (2011). Insidious trauma: Examining the relationship between heterosexist events and lesbians’ post-traumatic stress. Traumatology, 17(2), 4-13.

Szymanski, D. M., & Stewart, D.* (2010). Racism and sexism as correlates of African American women’s psychological distress. Sex Roles, 63, 226-238.

Szymanski, D. M., & Sung, M. R.* (2010). Minority stress and psychological distress among Asian American sexual minority persons. The Counseling Psychologist, 38, 848-872.

Szymanski, D. M., Gupta, A.*, Carr, E. R.*, & Stewart, D.* (2009). Internalized misogyny as a moderator of the link between sexist events and women’s psychological distress. Sex Roles, 61, 101-109.

Szymanski, D. M., & Gupta, A.* (2009). Examining the relationship between multiple oppressions and Asian American sexual minority persons’ psychological distress. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Social Services, 21, 267-281.

Szymanski, D. M., & Owens, G. P. (2009). Group-level coping as a moderator between heterosexism and sexism and psychological distress in sexual minority women. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 33, 197-205.

Szymanski, D. M., & Gupta, A.* (2009). Examining the relationship between multiple internalized oppressions and African American lesbian, gay, and bisexual persons’ self-esteem and psychological distress. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 56, 110-118.

Szymanski, D. M. (2009). Examining potential moderators of the link between heterosexist events and gay and bisexual men’s psychological distress. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 56, 142-151.

Ancis, J. R., Szymanski, D. M., & Ladany, N. (2008). Development and psychometric evaluation of the Counseling Women Competencies Scale (CWCS). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 719-744.

Szymanski, D. M., Kashubeck-West, S., & Meyer, J.* (2008). Internalized heterosexism: A historical and theoretical overview. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 510-524.

Szymanski, D. M., Kashubeck-West, S., & Meyer, J.* (2008). Internalized heterosexism: Measurement, psychosocial correlates, and research directions. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 525-574.

Szymanski, D. M., & Kashubeck-West, S. (2008). Mediators of the relationship between internalized oppressions and lesbian and bisexual women’s psychological distress. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 575-594.

Kashubeck-West, S. & Szymanski, D. M. (2008). Risky sexual behavior in gay and bisexual men: Internalized heterosexism, sensation seeking, and substance use. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 595-614.

Kashubeck-West, S., Szymanski, D. M., & Meyer, J.* (2008). Internalized heterosexism: Clinical implications and training considerations. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 615-630.

Szymanski, D. M., & Meyer, D.* (2008). Racism and heterosexism as correlates of psychological distress in African American sexual minority women. Journal of LGBT Issues in Counseling, 2(2), 94-108.

Szymanski, D. M., & Owens, G. P. (2008). Do coping styles moderate or mediate the relationship between internalized heterosexism and sexual minority women’s psychological distress? Psychology of Women Quarterly, 32, 95-104.

Szymanski, D. M., & Carr, E. R.* (2008). The roles of gender role conflict and internalized heterosexism in gay and bisexual men’s psychological distress: Testing two mediation models (Featured Contribution). Psychology of Men and Masculinity, 9, 40-54.

Szymanski, D. M., Ozegovic, J. J., Phillips, J. C, & Briggs-Phillips, M. (2007). Fostering scholarly productivity through academic and internship research training environments. Training and Education in Professional Psychology, 2, 135-146.

Baird, M. K., Szymanski, D. M., & Ruebelt, S. G.* (2007). Feminist identity development and practice among male therapists. Psychology of Men and Masculinity, 8, 67-78.

Szymanski, D. M., & Henning, S. L.* (2007). The role of self-objectification in women’s depression: A test of Objectification Theory. Sex Roles, 56, 45-53.

Chung, Y. B., Szymanski, D. M., & Amadio, D. M.  (2006). Empirical validation of a multidimensional model for assessing sexual orientation. Journal of LGBT Issues in Counseling, 1(3), 3-13.

Chung, Y. B., & Szymanski, D. M. (2006). Racialand sexual identities of Asian American gay men. Journal of LGBT Issues in Counseling, 1(2), 67-93.

Szymanski, D. M. (2006). Does internalized heterosexism moderate the link between heterosexist events and lesbians’ psychological distress? Sex Roles, 54, 227-234.

Szymanski, D. M. (2005). Feminist identity and theories as correlates of feminist supervision practices. The Counseling Psychologist, 33, 729-747.

Balsam, K. F., & Szymanski, D. M. (2005). Relationship quality and domestic violence in women's same-sex relationships: The role of minority stress. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 29, 258- 269.

Szymanski, D. M. (2005). Heterosexism and sexism as correlates of psychological distress in lesbians. Journal of Counseling & Development, 83, 355- 360.

Szymanski, D. M. (2005). A feminist approach to working with internalized heterosexism in lesbians. Journal of College Counseling, 8, 74-85.

Pope, M., Barret, B., Szymanski, D. M., Chung, Y. B., Singaravelu, H., McLean, R., & Sanabria, S. (2004). Culturally appropriate career counseling with gay and lesbian clients. Career Development Quarterly, 53, 158-177.

Szymanski, D. M. (2004). Relations among dimensions of feminism and internalized             heterosexism in lesbians and bisexual women. Sex Roles, 51(3/4), 145-159.

Phillips, J. C., Szymanski, D. M., Ozegovic, J. J., & Briggs, M. (2004). Preliminary examination and measurement of the internship research training environment. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 51, 240-248.

Szymanski, D. M. (2003). The Feminist Supervision Scale (FSS): A rational/theoretical approach. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 27, 221-232.

Szymanski, D. M., & Chung, Y. B. (2003). Feminist attitudes and coping resources as correlates of lesbian internalized heterosexism. Feminism & Psychology, 13, 369-389.

Szymanski, D. M., & Chung, Y. B. (2003). Internalized homophobia in lesbians. Journal of Lesbian Studies, 7(1), 115-125.

Szymanski, D. M., Baird, M. K., & Kornman, C. L. (2002). The feminist male therapist: Attitudes and practices for the 21st century. Psychology of Men and Masculinity, 3, 22-27.   

Ozegovic, J. J., Bikos, L. H., & Szymanski, D. M. (2001). Trends and predictors of alcohol use among undergraduate female students. Journal of College Student Development, 42, 447-455.

Szymanski, D. M., Chung, Y. B., & Balsam, K. F. (2001). Psychosocial correlates of internalized homophobia in lesbians. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 34(1), 27-38.

Ancis, J. R., & Szymanski, D. M. (2001). Awareness of white privilege among white counseling trainees. (Major Contribution). The Counseling Psychologist, 29, 548-569.

Szymanski, D. M., & Chung, Y. B. (2001). The Lesbian Internalized Homophobia Scale: A rational/theoretical approach. Journal of Homosexuality, 41(2), 37-52.

Dawn Szymanski

Dawn Szymanski

Associate Professor
Ph.D., Georgia State University (2001)

Email: dszymans@utk.edu

Key words: Counseling psychology; feminist therapy; lesbian, gay, and bisexual issues; multicultural counseling