Donna Pincus, Ph.D.

Donna Pincus, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Director, Child and Adolescent Fear and Anxiety Treatment Program
900 Commonwealth Ave, Boston MA

Dr. Donna Pincus is an Associate Professor at Boston University and has been the Director of the Child and Adolescent Fear and Anxiety Treatment Program at the Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders at Boston University for the past 21 years. Dr. Pincus graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Brandeis University in 1991 with a B.A. in psychology. She completed her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Binghamton University, specializing in the assessment and treatment of children’s fears and anxieties and children’s coping with stressful events. She completed her clinical internship at the University of Florida Health Sciences Center and joined the faculty at Boston University in 1999.

Dr. Pincus has focused her clinical research career on the development of new treatments for children and adolescents with anxiety disorders and their families, with a particular focus on understudied and highly impaired populations of youth.  She has also investigated the role parents and families play in the development, maintenance, and prevention of childhood disorders.  She has been the recipient of numerous research grants from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), as well as from local foundations. Dr. Pincus is currently collaborating with public school districts to test the feasibility and efficacy of using interactive web-based treatments for panic disorder and other anxiety disorders in middle and high schools. She is also co-leading a pragmatic clinical trial funded by the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to evaluate the relative effectiveness of face-to-face and online formats for treating child and adolescent anxiety in pediatric health care settings in four regions of the U.S. (Pacific Northwest, Southeast, Northeast, and Midatlantic).  Dr. Pincus’ current research focuses on ways to develop and refine treatments for child and adolescent anxiety disorders, as well as on novel ways to integrate treatments for child anxiety into community settings, such as schools and pediatric primary care. Dr. Pincus’ research laboratory involves undergraduate and graduate students, and Dr. Pincus mentors students in developing their own research projects.

Dr. Pincus has also dedicated part of her career to sharing accurate information about effective cognitive behavioral treatments for anxiety disorders to the public. She has appeared on both local and national media networks, including NBC’s Today Show with Katie Couric and Matt Lauer, Nick News, National Geographic Television, Women’s Lifetime Television Network, ABC News’ 20-20 Downtown, and Good Morning America. She has recently published a book, Growing Up Brave: Expert Strategies for Helping Your Child Overcome Fear, Stress, and Anxiety (Little, Brown, 2012).  Dr. Pincus regularly gives talks and workshops on child anxiety to parents, teachers, students, and healthcare professionals around the nation.

Selected Publications:

  • Green, J.G., Comer, J.S., Nadeau, M., Donaldson, A., Elkins, R.M., Reid, G., & Pincus, D.B. (in press). School functioning and use of school-based accommodations by treatment-seeking anxious children. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders.
  • Elkins, R.M., Gallo, K. P., Pincus, D.B., Comer. J. S. (2016). Moderators of intensive CBT for adolescent panic disorder: The roles of fear and avoidance. Child and Adolescent Mental Health. 21 (1), 30-36.
  • Chow, C., Pincus, D.B., & Comer, J.S. (2015). Pediatric food allergies and psychosocial functioning: Examining the potential moderating roles of maternal distress and overprotection. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 40(10), 1065-1074.
  • Elkins, R. M., Pincus, D. B., & Comer. J. S. (2014). A psychometric evaluation of the Panic Disorder Severity Scale for Children and Adolescents. Psychological Assessment, 26(2), 609-618. doi: 10.1037/a0035283.
  • Pincus, D.B., Elkins, R. M., & Hardway, C. (2014). Intensive treatments for adolescent panic disorder and agoraphobia: Helping youth move beyond avoidance. Psychopathology Review, 1(1), 189-194. doi: 10.5127/pr.033313.
  • Cooper-Vince, C., Pincus, D.B., & Comer, J.S. (2014). Maternal intrusiveness, family financial means, and anxiety across childhood in a large multiphase sample of community youth. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 42(3), 429-438. DOI 10.1007/s 10802-013-9790-4
  • Leyfer, O., Gallo, K., Cooper-Vince, C., & Pincus, D.B. (2013).  Patterns and predictors of comorbidity of DSM-IV anxiety disorders in a clinical sample of children and adolescents. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 27, 306-311. DOI: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2013.01.010
  • Pincus, D.B., Weiner, C.L., & Friedman, A.G. (2012).  Differential efficacy of home monitoring and cognitive behavioral treatment for decreasing children’s maladaptive nighttime fears. Child and Family Behavior Therapy, 34(1), 1-19. DOI: 10.1080/07317107.2012.654426
  • Pincus, D.B., Ehrenreich, J.T., Whitton, S.A., Mattis, S.M., & Barlow, D.H. (2010). Cognitive behavioral treatment of panic disorder in adolescence. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 39(5), 638-649. DOI: 1080/15374416.2010.501288
  • Pincus, D.B., Ehrenreich, J.T., Santucci, L., & Eyberg, S. (2008). The implementation of modified Parent-Child Interaction Therapy for youth with Separation Anxiety Disorder [Special Issue].   Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 15(2), 118-125. DOI: 10.1016/j.cbpra.2007.08.002
  • Pincus, D.B., Madigan, R., Kerns, C., Hardway, C., & Comer, J. (2014). Managing maladaptive mood and arousal. In E. Sburlati, H. Lyneham, C. Schniering, & R. Rapee (Eds.) Evidence Based CBT for Anxiety and Depression in Children and Adolescents: A Competencies Based Approach. Chichester: JohnWiley & Sons, Ltd.
  • Pincus, D.B., Elkins, R.M., Weiner, C.L., & Hardway, C. (2014). Cognitive behavioral treatment of sleep disorders in children and adolescents. In D. Mostovsky (Ed.), Handbook of Behavioral Medicine (pp. 223-250). Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley.

Selected Books