Alexandra Bettis, PhD
Dr. Alex Bettis is a licensed clinical psychologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at VUMC. She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from Vanderbilt University in 2018, and completed her pre-doctoral clinical internship in the UCLA Semel Institute General Child Track. Dr. Bettis completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in the Brown Medical School Child Mental Health T32 program prior to joining the faculty at VUMC.
Dr. Bettis has expertise in the treatment of depression, anxiety, OCD, and trauma-related disorders in children and adolescents. She also has clinical expertise in the management of suicide and self-harm in the context of these disorders. Dr. Bettis employs a cognitive-behavioral approach to treatment.
Dr. Bettis's research aims to elucidate key mechanisms of efficacious interventions for adolescent mental health so as to improve the current prevention and treatment evidence base. Her program of research includes theoretical and empirical investigations of coping and emotion regulation processes in youth and families, both in and outside the context of interventions for high-risk youth. Her current research aims to explore emotion regulation processes as predictors of short-term suicide risk funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. In addition, she is currently developing a parent-focused intervention to support parents of teens who present to emergency services for a mental health crisis, and this work is funded by the Klingenstein Third Generation Foundation.