Karen Burruss-Cousins, Ph.D., M.S.W.

Karen Burruss-Cousins, Ph.D., M.S.W.
Karen Burruss-Cousins, Ph.D., M.S.W.

Ph.D., Social Work, University of Maryland, Baltimore
M.S.W., Social Work, Virginia Commonwealth University
kburruss-cousins@friendsresearch.org
Phone: 410-837-3977 ext. 268
Fax: 410-752-4218
Research Interests

Dr. Burruss-Cousins is an interdisciplinary social science researcher focused on promoting health and well-being while incorporating a social work lens. Her research aims to improve quality of life and access to appropriate and timely healthcare within historically marginalized and disenfranchised populations using mixed-methods intervention approaches that engage and empower stakeholder voices. She has worked on several national and state funded projects focused on: identifying and assisting child welfare involved youth who have been victims of human trafficking, creating anti-trafficking initiatives at local and state levels, creating effective public health messaging around cancer prevention with the goal of increasing testing in rural populations, understanding and improving risk reduction and health interventions for urban populations involved in risky sexual behaviors, and developing sustainable engagement efforts for women utilizing outpatient drug rehabilitation programs.

Selected Publications
Burruss, K., Harmon-Darrow, C., Mallon, N., McTavish, G., & Finigan-Carr, N. (in press). Child welfare workers’ experiences of training on child sex trafficking.
Harmon-Darrow, C., Burruss, K., Aggarwal, N., & Finigan-Carr, N. (in press). Changes in child welfare workers’ knowledge about child trafficking over time. Children & Youth Services Review.
Harmon-Darrow, C., Rubenstein, A., Eisler, A., McTavish, G., & Burruss, K., & Finigan-Carr, N. (in Press). Child welfare workers’ knowledge & self-efficacy about engaging survivors of child sex trafficking. Social Work Research.
Snow, A., Handsman, S., Lawton, B., Burruss, K., & Oktay, J.S. (2021). Did COVID-19 change the interventions provided by oncology social workers in the epicenter of the pandemic? A natural experiment. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, 39 (3), 1-9.
Harmon-Darrow, C., Burruss, K., & Finigan-Carr, N. (2020). “We are kind of their parents”: Child welfare workers’ perspective on sexuality education for foster youth. Children and Youth Services Review, 108. Children and Youth Services Review, 108. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2019.104565.
Oktay, J.S., Rohan, E.A., Burruss, K., Callahan, C., Schapmire, T.J., & Zebrack, B. (2020). Oncology social work intervention index (OSWii): An instrument to measure oncology social work interventions to advance research. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, 39 (5), 1-12.
Burruss, K., Sacco, P., & Smith, C.A (2014). Understanding older adults’ attitudes and beliefs about drinking: Perspectives of residents in congregate living. Ageing & Society. doi:10.1017/SO144686X14000671.
Sacco, P., Burruss, K., Smith, C., Kuerbis, A., Harrington, D., Moore, A.A., & Resnick, B. (2014). Drinking behavior among older adults at a continuing care retirement community: Affective and motivational influences. Aging & Mental Health. doi:10.1080/13607863.2014.933307.
Quillin, J., McClish, D., Jones, R., Burruss, K., & Bodurtha, J. (2006). Spiritual coping, family history, and perceived risk for breast cancer—can we make sense of it? Journal of Genetic Counseling, 15, 6, 449- 460.
Perry B.L., Miles D., Burruss, K., & Svikis D. (2004). Premenstrual symptomatology and alcohol consumption in college women. Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 65, 4, 464-468.