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College of Human Sciences

Optimizing Human Performance

Qiong (Joanna) Wu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Dr. Wu is accepting new graduate students for 2019-20.

Get to know Dr. Wu


My research interests focus on emotional processes within the family and their role in the intergenerational transmission of psychopathologies from parents to children. More specifically, I have primarily invested my research efforts in examining how maternal mental health problems (depression, anxiety, and substance use) are associated with adjustment issues in children through mother-child emotional dynamics. As an applied researcher and clinician, I am also interested in examining the efficacy of family therapy interventions aimed at improving parent-child emotional interactions.


  • B.S., Psychology, Peking University
  • M.S., Human Development and Family Science, Ohio State University
  • Graduate Interdisciplinary Specialization: Quantitative Research Methods, Ohio State University
  • Ph.D., Human Development and Family Science (Couple and Family Therapy), Ohio State University

Publications and Other Scholarly Activities

Wu, Q., Hooper, E. G., Feng, X., Gerhardt, M., & Ku, S. (in press). Mothers’ Depressive Symptoms and Responses to Preschooler’s Emotions: Moderation by Child Expression. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology. doi: 10.1016/j.appdev.2018.09.005

Wu, Q., & Slesnick, N. (in press). Substance Abusing Mothers with a History of Childhood Abuse and Their Children’s Depressive Symptoms: The Efficacy of Family Therapy. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. doi: 10.1111/jmft.12364

Wu, Q., Harwood, R. L., & Feng, X. (2018). Family Socioeconomic Status and Maternal Depressive Symptoms: Mediation through Household Food Insecurity across Five Years. Social Science & Medicine, 215, 1-6. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2018.08.043

Wu, Q., Slesnick, N., & Murnan, A. (2018). Understanding Parenting Stress and Children’s Behavior Problems among Homeless, Substance-Abusing Mothers. Infant Mental Health Journal, 39(4), 423-431. doi: 10.1002/imhj.21717

Wu, Q., Slesnick, N., & Zhang, J. (2018). Understanding the Role of Emotion-Oriented Coping in Women’s Motivation for Change. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 86, 1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2017.12.006

Wu, Q., Feng, X., Hooper, E. G., & Ku, S. (2017). Maternal Emotion Socialization, Depressive Symptoms and Child Emotion Regulation: Child Emotionality as a Moderator. Infant and Child Development, 26(1), e1979. doi: 10.1002/icd.1979


  • ISSBD Early Career Scholar Travel Grant
  • SRCD Student Travel Award
  • OAMFT Scholarship, AAMFT Ohio Division
  • Crane Center Graduate Research Fellow, OSU



“Our destiny offers not the cup of despair, but the chalice of opportunity. So let us seize it not in fear, but in gladness.”
– R.M. Nixon


Research Teaching Mentoring Marriage and Family Therapy Statistical Analysis

Top 5 from “Character Strengths”

Perseverance – Finishing what one starts; persevering in a course of action in spite of obstacles

Prudence – Being careful about one’s choices

Self-Regulation – Regulating what one feels and does

Judgment – Thinking things through and examining them from all sides

Perspective – Being able to provide wise counsel to others


I was born and raised in Taiyuan, Shanxi, China.




“The unexamined life is not worth living.”
– Socrates

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