Jerome Short, Ph.D.

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Current Research

My recent Research Publications include:

Disabato, D. J., Short, J. L., Lameira, D. M., Bagley, K. D., & Wong, S. J. (2018). Predicting help seeking behavior: The impact of knowing someone close who has sought help. Journal of American College Health. DOI:10.1080/07448481.2018.1440568

(Abstract) Objectives: This study sought to replicate and extend research on social facilitators of college student's help seeking for psychological problems. Participants: We collected data on 420 ethnically diverse college students at a large public university (September 2008 – May 2010). Methods: Students completed a cross-sectional online survey. Results: We found that students who were aware of close others’ (e.g., family, friends) help seeking were two times more likely to have sought formal (e.g., psychologist) and informal (e.g., clergy) help themselves. Tests of moderation revealed the incremental effect (i.e., controlling for help seeking attitudes, internalizing symptoms, cultural demographics) of close others’ formal help seeking was strong and significant for men (R2 = .112) while negligible and nonsignificant for women (R2 = .002). Conclusions: We discuss the importance for students – particularly men – to learn about close others’ help seeking for facilitating their own help seeking during times of distress. Available at:

Disabato, D. J., Kashdan, T. B., Short, J. L., & Jarden, A. (2017). What predicts positive life events that influence the course of depression? A longitudinal examination of gratitude and meaning in life. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 41(3), 44-58.

(Abstract) Decades of research have shown that positive life events contribute to the remission and recovery of depression; however, it is unclear how positive life events are generated. In this study, we sought to understand if personality strengths could predict positive life events that aid in the alleviation of depression. We tested a longitudinal mediation model where gratitude and meaning in life lead to increased positive life events and, in turn, decreased depression. The sample consisted of 797 adult participants from 43 different countries who completed online surveys at five timepoints. Higher levels of gratitude and meaning in life each predicted decreases in depression over 3 and 6 months time. Increases in positive life events mediated the effects of these personality strengths on depression over 3 months; however, not over 6 months. Goal pursuit and positive emotions are theorized to be the driving forces behind gratitude and meaning in life’s effects on positive life events. We used the hedonic treadmill to interpret the short-term impact of positive life events on depression. Our findings suggest the potential for gratitude and meaning in life interventions to facilitate depression remission. Available at

Disabato, D. J., Goodman, F. R., Kashdan, T. B., Short, J .L., & Jarden, A. (2016). Different types of well-being? A cross-cultural examination of hedonic and eudaimonic well-being. Psychological Assessment, 28(5), 471-482.

(Abstract) A large international sample was used to test whether hedonia (the experience of positive emotional states and satisfaction of desires) and eudaimonia (the presence of meaning and development of one’s potentials) represent 1 overarching well-being construct or 2 related dimensions. A latent correlation of .96 presents negligible evidence for the discriminant validity between Diener’s (1984) subjective well-being model of hedonia and Ryff’s (1989) psychological well-being model of eudaimonia. When compared with known correlates of well-being (e.g., curiosity, gratitude), eudaimonia and hedonia showed very similar relationships, save goal-directed will and ways (i.e., hope), a meaning orientation to happiness, and grit. Identical analyses in subsamples of 7 geographical world regions revealed similar results around the globe. A single overarching construct more accurately reflects hedonia and eudaimonia when measured as self-reported subjective and psychological well-being. Nevertheless, measures of eudaimonia may contain aspects of meaningful goal-directedness unique from hedonia. Available at

Machell, K. A., Kashdan, T. B., Short, J. L., & Nezlek, J. B. (2015). Relationships between meaning in life, social and achievement events, and positive and negative affect in daily life. Journal of Personality, 83(3), 287-298.

(Abstract) Research on meaning in life has generally focused on global meaning judgments. This study examined how people’s daily experiences, represented by events that occur in daily life, influence their perceived sense of meaning on a daily basis. One hundred sixty-two college students completed daily reports for two weeks. We examined the relationships among daily social and achievement events, daily positive and negative affect, and daily meaning in life. In addition, we tested the possible moderating influence of depressive symptoms on these relationships. Positive daily social and achievement events were related to greater daily meaning, above and beyond the contributions of daily positive and negative affect. Negative social and achievement events were related to less daily meaning, and negative achievement events covaried with daily meaning above and beyond positive and negative affect. Depression moderated the relationships between positive events and meaning, such that people who reported more depressive symptoms had greater increases in daily meaning in response to positive social and achievement events than individuals who reported fewer symptoms.These findings suggest the important role that daily events may play in fluctuations in people’s affective experiences and sense of meaning in life. Available at:

Wagner, D.C. & Short, J.L. (2014). Longitudinal predictors of self-rated health and mortality in older adults. Preventing Chronic Disease, 11:130241, 1-8. Available at DOI:

(Abstract) Few studies have compared the effects of demographic, cognitive, and behavioral factors of health and mortality longitudinally. We examined predictors of self-rated health and mortality at 3 time points, each 2 years apart, over 4 years. We used data from the 2006 wave of the Health and Retirement Study and health and mortality indicators from 2006, 2008, and 2010. We analyzed data from 17,930 adults (aged 50-104) to examine predictors of health, and data from a subgroup of 1,171 adults who died between 2006 and 2010 to examine predictors of mortality. Time 1 depression was the strongest predictor of health at all time points, independent of age and education. Education, mild activities, BMI, Delayed Word Recall, and smoking were all associated with self-rated health at each time point and predicted mortality. Delayed Word Recall mediated the relationships of mild activity with health and mortality. Bi-directional mediation was found for the effects of mild activity and depression on health. Medical professionals should consider screening for depression and memory difficulties, in addition to medical assessments. These assessments could lead to more effective biopsychosocial interventions to help older adults manage risks for mortality.

Erb, S.E., Renshaw, K.D., Short, J.L., & Pollard, J.W. (2014). The importance of college roommate relationships: A review and systemic conceptualization. Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice, 51(1), 43-55.

(Abstract) This article reviews empirical studies of the role of college roommate relationships in students' mental health and college adjustment. We propose a systemic conceptualization of roommate relationships that highlights roommates' interdependence and origins of roommate relationship dynamics. We discuss practice implications for student affairs professionals, provide a case example, and offer recommendations for future research. Download Article.

Short, J.L. (2012). Psychological fitness for older adults: A pilot intervention. Seniors Housing & Care Journal, 20(1), 71-84.

(Abstract) The purpose of this pilot study was to evaluate a brief (3 hours) psychological fitness intervention that taught and encouraged participants in a retirement community (ages 69 to 94) to practice eight daily psychological exercises.  The intervention randomly assigned 96 participants to receive a program immediately or to a delayed-treatment control group.  At a one-month posttest, the immediate intervention participants reported significant increases in optimism, decreases in anxiety, and marginally significant increases in perceived support compared to the control group.  The results suggest the value of a brief intervention to enhance older adults’ mental health with the potential to reduce medical care costs. Download Article.

Landrau, E. & Short, J. (2010). The role of relationship attachment styles in disordered eating behaviors. Colonial Academic Alliance Undergraduate Research Journal, 1(1), Article 11. Available at:

(Abstract) This study examined women’s eating disorder symptoms and the quality of the attachment relationship with their mothers and romantic partners for a sample of 117 participants, ages 18 to 22. Seventeen of the participants were in treatment for an eating disorder and 100 were untreated college students, but engaging in binge eating. There were no significant differences between the groups in dieting, bingeing, and purging. The treated group had higher levels of depression and anxiety, and lower levels of self-esteem than the untreated group. The treated group also had lower levels of secure attachment, attachment affect, and perceived support from their mothers compared to the untreated group. There was a negative relation between esteem enhancement from mothers and dieting and purging behavior. Esteem enhancement from romantic partners had a negative relation with anxiety. An anxious ambivalent attachment style with mothers had a positive relation to depression for both groups. The results suggest the protective quality of mother-daughter relationships for young women with eating disorder symptoms and the value of strengthening this relationship for their mental health.

Han, S.C. & Short, J.L. (2009). Alcohol expectancies as a mediator of the relation between impulsivity and alcohol consumption in Asian Americans. Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse, 8(2), 178-200.

(Abstract) Past research on alcohol consumption in minority groups has focused on examining differences in the level of drinking.  However, research has yet to fully examine racial differences in the factors that might mediate alcohol consumption.  The present study sought to test whether alcohol expectancies mediate the relation of impulsivity on alcohol consumption for both  Asian Americans and Caucasians.  Participants included 57 Asian American and 70 Caucasian undergraduate students.  Results showed that positive alcohol expectancies fully mediated the pathways between dimensions of impulsivity and alcohol use for Asian Americans.  For Caucasian participants, only impulsivity predicted alcohol use.  Future research on alcohol use and abuse by Asian Americans should consider the role of alcohol expectancies in different social contexts. Download Article

Short, J. L. (2006). Development and evaluation of a psychological fitness intervention for college students. Proceedings of the Fourth Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education, 5463-5473.

(Abstract) This study evaluated a psychological fitness intervention for 94 ethnically diverse college students, ages 17 to 22. Half (n=47) of the students were randomly assigned to an immediate-treatment experimental group and half to a delayed-treatment control group. The experimental group received three hours (one hour per week) of theoretically and empirically-derived cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and interpersonal skills training in small groups that they could practice in the form of daily exercises. The experimental group participants reported significant increases in optimistic thinking, academic competence, positive body image, global self-esteem, and life satisfaction, and significant decreases in anxiety, depression, and anger symptoms compared to the control group. The results suggest the utility of a theoretically integrative set of empirically supported psychological exercises to enhance mental health and reduce psychological distress of college students that could prove useful for other populations. Download Article

Short, J.L., Shogan, C.J., and Owings, N.M. (2005). The influence of first ladies on mental health policy. White House Studies, 5(1), 65-76.

(Abstract) Due to their personal and family experiences with mental illness, religious beliefs, formal education, socialization as caregivers, earlier success in changing state policies, and political ideology, several first ladies have chosen to influence federal mental health policy. The political advocacy of first ladies and their preferred policies reflect presidential preferences, but over time they have become more autonomous and systematic in their work as their accepted political roles multiply. This article traces the development of federal mental health policy and the contribution of six first ladies from Eleanor Roosevelt to Laura Bush. Download Article