Elizabeth D’Amico

Elizabeth D'Amico is an adjunct professor in the Department of Community Health Science.  She is a senior behavioral scientist at the RAND Corporation and a licensed clinical psychologist. D'Amico is nationally recognized for her work developing, implementing, and evaluating interventions for adolescents. She is a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT) and the interventions she has developed all utilize motivational interviewing (MI). 

D'Amico has evaluated several MI interventions with adolescents and young adults in a variety of settings, including middle schools, primary care, homeless shelters, and teen court. She recently developed and tested a group intervention for urban Native American adolescents that integrated MI and traditional healing practices. She has also conducted epidemiological work to examine predictors and consequences of adolescent substance use. She is the principal investigator of a large longitudinal study that examines substance use patterns over 14 years among youth from sixth grade through age 24. Her most recent work has focused on the effects of medical marijuana advertising on adolescents' marijuana use.  

In 2016, D'Amico was recognized as a Fellow of the American Psychological Association for Division 50 (Society of Addiction Psychology). She recently expressed her views on how to talk to adolescents about marijuana legalization on the PBS news hour for the "In My Humble Opinion" (#IMHO) series. D'Amico received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Texas. 


  • PhD, Clinical Psychology, University of Texas, Austin, TX

Areas of Interest

  • Adolescents
  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
  • Tobacco use
  • Child health
  • Juvenile delinquency
  • Substance use prevention

Recent Projects

  • Development and testing of an integrated healing and motivational interviewing group intervention for urban Native American youth.
  • Testing a brief motivational interviewing intervention for at-risk adolescents in four primary care settings.
  • AOD use trajectories from age 10 to 24: Multi-level predictors, health and behavioral functioning, and racial/ethnic disparities.

Selected Publications

  • D’Amico, E.J.; Dickerson, D.L; Brown, R.A.; Klein, D.J.; Agniel, D. & Johnson, C. (2019). Unveiling an "invisible population": Health, substance use, sexual behavior, culture, and discrimination among urban American Indian/Alaska Native adolescents in California. Ethnicity & Health. doi: 10.1080/13557858.2018.1562054. [Epub ahead of print].
  • Troxel, W.M, Rodriguez, A., Seelam, R., Tucker, J. S., Shih, R.A., & D’Amico, E.J. (2019). Associations of longitudinal sleep trajectories with risky sexual behavior during late adolescence. Health Psychology. doi: 10.1037/hea0000753. [Epub ahead of print]
  • D'Amico, E.J., Parast, L., Osilla, K.C., Seelam, R., Meredith, L.S., Shadel, W.G., Stein, B.D. (2019). Understanding which teenagers benefit most from a brief primary care substance use intervention. Pediatrics doi: 10.1542/peds.2018-3014. [Epub ahead of print] 
  • Shih, R.A., Rodriguez, A., Parast, L., Pedersen, E.R., Tucker, J.S., Troxel, W.M., Kraus, L., Davis, J.P., D'Amico, E.J. (2019). Associations between young adult marijuana outcomes and availability of medical marijuana dispensaries and storefront signage. Addiction. doi: 10.1111/add.14711. [Epub ahead of print]
  • D’Amico, E.J., Parast, L., Shadel, W.G., Meredith, L.S., Seelam, R., & Stein, B.D. (2018). Brief motivational interviewing intervention to reduce alcohol and marijuana use for at-risk adolescents in primary care: A randomized clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 86(9):775-786.
  • D’Amico, E.J., Rodriguez, A., Tucker, J.S., Pedersen, E.R., & Shih, R.A. (2018). Planting the seed for marijuana use: Changes in exposure to medical marijuana advertising and subsequent adolescent marijuana use, cognitions, and consequences over seven years. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 188:385-391.
  • Jernigan, V.B., D’Amico, E. J., Duran, B., & Buchwald, D. (2018). Multilevel and community-level interventions with Native Americans: Challenges and opportunities. Prevention Science. [Epub ahead of print]. DOI: 10.1007/s11121-018-0916-3. PMCID: PMC6275139