Welcome to our Behavioral Health Lab!


Much of our research focuses on understanding and treating tobacco/nicotine use — namely cigarette smoking and vaping of e-cigarettes. Our laboratory and clinical studies are integrated, with the lab studies helping to characterize potential targets for intervention, and the clinical trials both testing ways to improve treatment and seeking to identify the mechanisms by which those interventions work. In both areas, we are interested in how processes and treatments work across human diversity, especially for people facing tobacco-related health disparities, including sex and gender minorities, racialized groups, comorbid psychopathology, and co-use of other drugs.

Yet, our work is broader than nicotine and tobacco. We also examine other substances/drugs (namely stimulants, but also emerging work on cannabis), and some of our research goes beyond addiction (e.g., ADHD, assessment of psychopathology). Still, the broad goals are the same — improving our understanding of the roles of basic processes (e.g., emotion/motivation and cognition) in mental health and building better assessment approaches and treatments for mental health problems. So, behavioral health is a better broad label for the work we passionately pursue.

We employ a range of methods and research designs, which enhances our ability to provide excellent training. Of course, we assess traditional self-report, but we also employ ecological momentary assessment (EMA), measure behavior directly through observation, and use a range of psychophysiological and biochemical methods.  Our research designs include experiments, quasi-experimental designs, and longitudinal observation.

Please take a look around. Explore our active projects. Prospective graduate and undergraduate students, please check out the “Join Us” section.  Let me know if you have any questions.


Larry Hawk, Ph.D.
Coordinator of Research Advancement (CoRA)
Co-Director, Unit on Behavioral Health Research and Treatment
Department of Psychology
University at Buffalo