Celene Domitrovich
Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University, 1998

Vice President for Research, CASEL

Research Assistant Professor of Health and Human Development, Penn State

Adjunct Faculty, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, College of Health and Human Development, Penn State

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Program Areas: School-based Prevention Research; Translation, Dissemination & Implementation

Contact Information


Phone: 814-865-2616
Fax Number: 814-865-2530


Joseph E. Zins Award for Action Research in Social and Emotional Learning, CASEL

Prevention Action story on award (July 2011)

Online News Articles

Preschool Program Improves Standardized Test Scores through Grade 5

Penn State Newswire, October 6, 2011   Science Newsline October 6, 2011

Harrisburg Patriot-News, October 6, 2011

Research Interests

Developmental psychopathology, interventions, school readiness, mental disorders, development of social and emotional competence in young children, the role of parents and teachers in children’s acquisition of skills, relationship between skills and school success

Examples of Current Prevention Projects

Head Start (Head Start REDI––Research-based, Developmentally Informed)
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Start Date: 2003
This project will evaluate the impact of infusing current Head Start programs with social-emotional support curricula (Preschool PATHS® Curriculum ) and language and emergent literacy skill support curricula. A randomized trial will examine the impact on child school readiness at the end of Head Start and on adjustment and achievement in kindergarten and first grade.


Prevention Research Center and Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, Penn State

Project Web Site

The aim of this project is to determine the feasibility and specific value of an Integrated Data System that will provide relevant actionable information (academic, social/emotional skills, and attendance) to school personnel so they can manage limited resources optimally.

Underlying Regulatory Mechanisms of Prevention Outcomes in the School-based PATHS® Curriculum Program (Greenberg, PI on Penn State Subcontract; Fishbein, RTI International, PI)

RTI International

Start Date: 2010

This study is the first in-depth school-based intervention trial to infuse relevant aspects of cognitive neuroscience with existing theories of developmental psychology and prevention science. The ultimate goal is to identify underlying conditions (inhibitory control and emotional regulation) that may serve to both mediate and moderate intervention effects in the early years of schooling. We are conducting a theory-driven examination of Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATHS), an evidence- based model with replicated outcome effects, to understand how the intervention works and for whom. The PATHS program is being implemented in kindergarten classrooms through first grade in 2-3 schools (Ne150) with an additional 2-3 schools as an active control condition (Ne150) using a randomized trial design.

Recent Publications

Greenberg, M. T., Domitrovich, C. E., Graczyk, P. A., & Zins, J. E. (2004). The study of implementation in school-based preventive interventions: Theory, research, and practice. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services. Final project report. [Project Report]

Domitrovich, C. E., Cortes, R., & Greenberg, M. T. (2007). Improving young children’s social and emotional competence: A randomized trial of the Preschool PATHS Program. Journal of Primary Prevention, 28(2), 67–91. PMID: 17265130 [PDF]

Bierman, K. L., Nix, R. L., Greenberg, M. T., Blair, C. & Domitrovich, C. E. (2008). Executive functions and school readiness intervention: Impact, moderation, and mediation in the Head Start REDI Program. Development and Psychopathology, 20, 821–844. PMID: 18606033 [online]

Bierman, K. L., Domitrovich, C. E., Nix, R. L., Gest, S. D., Welsh, J. A., Greenberg, M. T., Blair, C., Nelson, K., & Gill, S. (2008). Promoting academic and social-emotional school readiness: The Head Start REDI program. Child Development, 179, 1802–1817. PMID: 19037951 [PDF]

Domitrovich, C. E., Bradshaw, C. P., Poduska, J. M., Hoagwood, K., Buckley, J. A. Olin, S., Romanelli, L. H., Leaf, P. J., Greenberg, M. T., & Ialongo, N. S. (2008). Maximizing the implementation quality of evidence-based preventive interventions in schools:  A conceptual framework. Advances in School Based Mental Health Promotion, 1, 6–28. [PDF]

Domitrovich, C. E., Gest, S. D., Gill, S., Jones, D. J., & DeRouise, R. S. (2009). Teacher factors related to the professional development process of the Head Start REDI intervention. Early Education and Development, 20, 402–430. [PDF]

Ransford, C. Greenberg, M. T., Domitrovich, C. E., Small, M., & Jacobson, L. (2009). The role of teachers’ psychological experiences and perceptions of curriculum supports on implementation of a social emotional curriculum. School Psychology Review. [PDF]

Bierman, K. L., Torres, M., Domitrovich, C. E., Welsh, J., & Gest, S. (2009). Behavioral and cognitive readiness for school: Cross-domain associations for children attending Head Start. Social Development, 18, 305–323. [PDF]

Domitrovich, C. E., Gest, S. D., Gill, S., Bierman, K. L., Welsh, J. A., & Jones, D. J. (2009). Fostering high quality teaching with an enriched curriculum and professional development: Head Start REDI. American Educational Research Journal, 46, 567–597. [PDF]

Domitrovich, C. E., Bradshaw, C. P., Greenberg, M. T., Embry, D., Poduska, J. M., & Ialongo, N. (2009). Integrated models of school-based prevention: The logic and theory. Psychology in the Schools. [PDF]

Rhoades, B. L., Greenberg, M. T., & Domitrovich, C. E. (2009). The contribution of inhibitory control to preschoolers’ social-emotional competence. Applied Developmental Psychology, 30, 310–320. [PDF]

Domitrovich, C. E., Gest, S. D., Jones, D., Gill, S., & DeRousie, R. S. (2010). Implementation quality: Lessons learned in the context of the Head Start REDI trial. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 25, 284–298.

Denham, S. A., Brown, C., & Domitrovich, C. E. (2010). "Plays nice with others": Social-emotional learning and academic success. Early Education and Development, 21, 652–680.

Schultz, D., Ambike, A., Stapleton, L. M., Domitrovich, C. E., Schaeffer, C. M., & Bartels, B. (2010). Development of a questionnaire assessing teacher-perceived support for and attitudes about social and emotional learning. Early Education & Development, 21, 865–885.

Rhoades, B., Warren, H. K., Domitrovich, C. E., & Greenberg, M. T. (in press). Examining the link between preschool social-emotional competence and first grade academic achievement: The role of attention skills. Early Childhood Research Quarterly.


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