Positions

Overview

  • Dr. Stavrinos is the Director of the Translational Research for Injury Prevention (TRIP) Laboratory. The TRIP Lab offers students at various levels of training (high school, undergraduate, graduate, post-doc) and from various disciplines (e.g., psychology, medicine, public health, engineering, computer science) the opportunity to conduct high quality behavioral research. Since its establishment in 2009, nearly 100 students have been trained under Stavrinos’ mentorship.

    Experiential learning is one of the key principles guiding Dr. Stavrinos’ teaching philosophy. She is a firm believer that students learn best when they actively participate, whether in a research or classroom setting. Within a research context, experiential learning takes place when students are actively involved in all aspects of the research process. Under her direction, students:

    assist with the development of protocols
    recruit research participants
    run participants through experimental protocols
    process and enter data into statistical software
    disseminate research findings through presentations at scientific conferences and publications in scientific journals.
    These experiences challenge students to truly grasp what research is all about, from start to finish, and they reflect on these experiences through weekly writing assignments and presentations. Dr. Stavrinos provides constructive feedback in a timely manner, and fellow students also provide comments to each other, thus providing a bidirectional opportunity for learning; those providing feedback further their understanding and advance their critical thinking skills, and those receiving feedback learn how to accept critiques from multiple perspectives. Experiential learning enables students to develop a strong research skill set they can apply towards future work.

    For more information about the TRIP Lab, please visit our website at www.triplaboratory.com.

    Transportation safety across the lifespan (teens, older adults, developmental disabilities, traumatic brain injury), cognitive development and injury prevention, translational research, virtual reality/simulation methods
  • Selected Publications

    Academic Article

    Year Title Altmetric
    2019 Adolescents' perspectives on distracted driving legislationJournal of Safety Research.  68:173-179. 2019
    2019 Effects of speed of processing training and transcranial direct current stimulation on global sleep quality and speed of processing in older adults with and without HIV: A pilot study.Applied Neuropsychology Adult.  1-12. 2019
    2019 Pain, Pain Catastrophizing, and Individual Differences in Executive Function in AdolescenceJournal of the Association for the Care of Children in Hospitals.  48:18-37. 2019
    2018 A pilot investigation on the effects of combination transcranial direct current stimulation and speed of processing cognitive remediation therapy on simulated driving behavior in older adults with HIVTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour.  58:1061-1073. 2018
    2018 Relations between a laboratory-based sustained attention task and traffic violations in an Iranian sample of driversTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour.  58:177-183. 2018
    2018 Differences in Postinjury Psychological Symptoms Between Collegiate Athletes With Concussions and Orthopedic Injuries.Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine2018
    2018 Effect of electronic device use while driving on cardiovascular reactivityTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour.  54:188-195. 2018
    2017 Aggression, emotional self-regulation, attentional bias, and cognitive inhibition predict risky driving behavior.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  109:78-88. 2017
    2017 Return to Driving After Hip Arthroscopy.Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine.  28:299-303. 2017
    2017 Distracted Walking, Bicycling, and Driving: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Mobile Technology and Youth Crash Risk.Child Development.  89:118-128. 2017
    2017 Commercial motor vehicle driving performance: An examination of attentional resources and control using a driving simulator.Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied.  23:191-203. 2017
    2017 Social and Non-social Hazard Response in Drivers with Autism Spectrum Disorder.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.  47:905-917. 2017
    2017 Mechanisms behind distracted driving behavior: The role of age and executive function in the engagement of distracted driving.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  98:123-129. 2017
    2016 Commentary: Routh Early Career Award: How I Navigated My Early Career as a Pediatric Psychologist.Journal of Pediatric Psychology.  41:1060-1066. 2016
    2016 Commercial Truck Driver Health and Safety: Exploring Distracted Driving Performance and Self-Reported Driving Skill.Workplace Health and Safety.  64:369-376. 2016
    2016 Visual Behavior Differences in Drivers Across the Lifespan: A Digital Billboard Simulator Study.Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour.  41:19-28. 2016
    2016 The neuroprotective influence of employment on cognitive reserve: Implications for an aging HIV populationJournal of HIV/AIDS and Social Services.  15:284-298. 2016
    2016 Differential impact of personality traits on distracted driving behaviors in teens and older adults.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  92:107-112. 2016
    2016 The useful field of view assessment predicts simulated commercial motor vehicle driving safety.Traffic Injury Prevention.  17:763-769. 2016
    2015 Distracted Driving in Teens With and Without Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.Journal of Pediatric Nursing.  30:e183-e191. 2015
    2015 Predicting aberrant driving behaviour: The role of executive functionTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour.  34:18-28. 2015
    2015 Predicting Motor Vehicle Collisions in a Driving Simulator in Young Adults Using the Useful Field of View Assessment.Traffic Injury Prevention.  16:818-823. 2015
    2015 The impact of billboards on driver visual behavior: a systematic literature review.Traffic Injury Prevention.  16:234-239. 2015
    2014 Symptom dimensions of disruptive behavior disorders in adolescent drivers.Journal of Attention Disorders.  18:496-503. 2014
    2013 Impact of distracted driving on safety and traffic flow.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  61:63-70. 2013
    2013 Predictors of health-related quality-of-life following traumatic brain injury.Brain Injury.  27:992-999. 2013
    2012 Distraction and pedestrian safety: how talking on the phone, texting, and listening to music impact crossing the street.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  45:266-271. 2012
    2011 Distracted driving among adolescents: challenges and opportunities.Injury Prevention.  17:285. 2011
    2011 Mediating factors associated with pedestrian injury in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.Pediatrics.  128:296-302. 2011
    2011 Distracted walking: cell phones increase injury risk for college pedestrians.Journal of Safety Research.  42:101-107. 2011
    2009 Attentional control, high intensity pleasure, and risky pedestrian behavior in college students.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  41:658-661. 2009
    2009 The influence of carrying a backpack on college student pedestrian safety.Accident Analysis and Prevention.  41:352-356. 2009
    2009 Effect of cell phone distraction on pediatric pedestrian injury risk.Pediatrics.  123:e179-e185. 2009
    2009 The role of psychology in injury prevention efforts.Injury Prevention.  15:69. 2009
    2009 Children's spoken word recognition and contributions to phonological awareness and nonword repetition: A 1-year follow-upApplied Psycholinguistics.  30:101-121. 2009
    2008 Self-immolation in Iran.Journal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation.  29:451-460. 2008
    A Naturalistic Driving Study Across the Lifespan
    Association Between Executive Function and Problematic Adolescent Driving.Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.  37:702-711.

    Research Overview

  • For the past decade Dr. Stavrinos has been conducting research in transportation, for which she has received funding from multiple federal agencies including NIH, NSF, CDC, and USDOT. The focus of her research program is the prevention and control of unintentional injuries, particularly those resulting from motor vehicle crashes, the leading killer of people ages 5-24. Dr. Stavrinos’ research considers the broad context of unintentional injury prevention and control, and in particular examines driving in at-risk populations, including novice, teen drivers, distracted drivers, drivers with developmental disabilities such as ADHD and Autism, and older drivers. Dr. Stavrinos employs a variety of methodologies to study driving behavior, including driving simulation, self-report surveys, police crash reports, and naturalistic (observational) data capture.

    In Fall 2017, Dr. Stavrinos and the TRIP Lab will launch a new 5-year study funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NIH-NICHD). This longitudinal study will test the influence of age and driving experience on driving attention development under various conditions, and will identify underlying cognitive mechanisms of attention development and ultimately the occurrences of MVCs. Findings will have significant implications for targeted interventions to reduce MVCs and policy regarding optimal age and experience for licensure. It will be the first longitudinal study of attention in the driving context.
  • Principal Investigator On

  • Longitudinal Examination of Driving Attention Among Adolescents  awarded by National Institute of Child Health and Human Development/NIH/DHHS 2017 - 2022
  • TRIP Lab Distracted Driving Education and Outreach  awarded by REGIONAL PLANNING COMMISSION OF GREATER BIRMINGHAM 2018 - 2020
  • Eisenhower Fellowship - Albright  awarded by Department of Transportation 2018 - 2019
  • Eisenhower Fellowship - Lechtreck  awarded by Department of Transportation 2018 - 2019
  • Eisenhower Fellowship - Svancara  awarded by Department of Transportation 2018 - 2019
  • TRIP Lab Distracted Driving Education and Outreach  awarded by REGIONAL PLANNING COMMISSION OF GREATER BIRMINGHAM 2017 - 2018
  • Field Study of Newer Generation Heavy Vehicle Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) System  awarded by VIRGINIA TECH TRANSPORTATION INSTITUTE 2016 - 2018
  • Austin Svancara - Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2017 - 2018
  • Benjamin McManus - Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2017 - 2018
  • Maria Lechtreck - Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2017 - 2018
  • Tyler Bell - Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2017 - 2018
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2016 - 2017
  • Haley Johnson Bishop - Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2016 - 2017
  • Shannon Wittig - Dwight D. Eisenshower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2016 - 2017
  • Distracted Driving Translational Research for Injury Prevention (TRIP) Laboratory  awarded by ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION 2015 - 2017
  • Understanding and Preventing Motor Vehicle Crashes Around Social and Non-Social Hazards Among Adolescent Drivers with Autism Spectrum Disorders  awarded by American Psychological Foundation 2015 - 2016
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships for the Behavioral Sciences  awarded by Department of Transportation 2015 - 2016
  • STRIDE Summer Internship 2015  awarded by University of Florida 2015
  • A Naturalistic Driving Study Across the Lifespan  awarded by University of Florida 2014
  • Impact of Distracted Driving on Congestion  awarded by UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA (TUSCALOOSA) 2010 - 2011
  • Investigator On

  • Promoting Transportation Safety in Adolescence  awarded by National Institute of Child Health and Human Development/NIH/DHHS 2018 - 2023
  • Private Grant  awarded by MINNESOTA HEALTHSOLUTIONS CORP 2017 - 2019
  • Assessment of the Prevalence and Safety of Left Foot Driving in Right Foot and Ankle Surgery Patients  awarded by American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society 2017 - 2018
  • Examining the FMCSA Vision Standard and Vision Waiver Program for Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers  awarded by VIRGINIA TECH TRANSPORTATION INSTITUTE 2016 - 2018
  • Technology Transfer Distracted Driving-Overview Summary and Assessment of Ways to Alleviate  awarded by University of Florida 2016 - 2017
  • University Transportation Centers (UTCs)-Tier I: University of Alabama at Birmingham with Georgia Institute of Technology-Research Project 930-842  awarded by ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION 2012 - 2016
  • University Transportation Centers (UTCs)-Regional: University of Alabama at Birmingham with University of Florida-Research Project 930-843  awarded by ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION 2012 - 2015
  • Center for Translational Research on Aging and Mobility  awarded by National Institute on Aging/NIH/DHHS 2009 - 2014
  • Center for Translational Research on Aging and Mobility - Core B  awarded by National Institute on Aging/NIH/DHHS 2009 - 2014
  • A Naturalistic Driving Study Across the Lifespan  awarded by University of Florida 2012 - 2013
  • Distracted Driving in Teens with ADHD  awarded by CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL (PHILADELPHIA) 2009 - 2010
  • Education And Training

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Master of Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Full Name

  • Despina Stavrinos