The research interests of Bridget K. Biggs, Ph.D., L.P., are centered on understanding social aspects of emotional and physical well-being during childhood and adolescence.
Dr. Biggs' published empirical research has examined friendships and peer group experiences in relation to anxiety and depression symptoms, emotional experiences related to bullying, social support related to adolescents' healthy eating and physical activity, and the development and evaluation of psychosocial interventions.
Dr. Biggs has co-edited a book and written chapters on prevention and treatment of bullying and victimization. Currently funded projects focus on interventions to promote healthy eating and physical activity and the use of technology in the treatment of childhood anxiety disorders.
- Peer relations and emotional well-being. Dr. Biggs has published extensively on friendships, bullying and social skills in relation to the emotional well-being of children and adolescents. Recent projects have examined the relation of anxiety symptoms with social functioning and depressive symptoms.
- Physical wellness and social relations. Dr. Biggs' recent studies have investigated adolescent preferences for social support from family, peers and professionals for healthy eating and physical activity. New directions in this line of research include development of social support questionnaires, investigation of social barriers and facilitators to healthy eating and physical activity, motivators for weight loss among adolescents who are overweight, and social functioning in the context of chronic pain.
- Treatment development and evaluation. Another set of interests lies in the development and evaluation of interventions for children and adolescents. Dr. Biggs has worked with research teams focused on the treatment of childhood anxiety disorders, pediatric obesity intervention and prevention, and bullying prevention. As part of treatment evaluation, Dr. Biggs is interested in issues of social support and treatment fidelity and has published several articles on these issues.
- Other research interests include understanding psychopathology in cultural context and psychometric properties of psychological rating scales.
Significance to patient care
As social creatures, human behavior and well-being is influenced by others. By contributing to the science on social influences on emotional and physical well-being during childhood and adolescence, Dr. Biggs aims to highlight means for expanding or enhancing interventions for childhood emotional problems (for example, anxiety disorders) and health promotion (for example, obesity prevention).
Through publications and presentations to mental health and medical health providers, Dr. Biggs conveys practical, empirically based information related to evidence-based practices, enhancing social support, and addressing peer relations difficulties such as bullying that providers can integrate into their work with patients. An important theme underlying Dr. Biggs' contributions to intervention development and evaluation is increasing access to empirically supported interventions.
- Member, editorial board, Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 2013-present
- Member, editorial board, Child and Youth Care Forum, 2008-present