Allyson L. Dir


I graduated from the University of Georgia in 2009 with a B.S. in Psychology and a B.A. in Spanish. I started the Clinical Science Ph.D. program at IUPUI in 2010 and obtained my Master of Science from IUPUI in 2012.


Research Area(s): 
Research Interests: 

I am currently conducting research in the Impulsivity Neuroscience Laboratory. My research interests are in risk-taking behaviors, especially sexual risk-taking and substance use, and how risk factors such as trait impulsivity, socially-learned expectancies, and other variables influence engagement in risky behaviors. Additionally, I am interested in digital media (i.e., smart phones, social networking sites, etc.), and the growing impact it has on our everyday life, as well as the role that digital media may have in risk-taking behaviors. My current research focuses on sexting behaviors adn understanding mechanisms of risk involved in alcohol-related sexual encounters. 

My master’s thesis examined sexting behaviors and beliefs about sexting outcomes via development of a measure of sexting expectancies (Sextpectancies measure). 

Currently, I am primarily working on 2 research projects. One is a longitudinal study that tests a causal model in which alcohol use and sexting behaviors (in addition to trait impulsivity and beliefs about the effects of alcohol on sexual experience) together increase the risk for more risky sexual behaviors (such as sexual assault or sex with a casual partner), particularly among college women. The other project is an experimental study using vignettes to determine how males and females may differentially perceive or interpret sexts (e.g., interpreted as consent for sex), and whether there are differences in situations when alcohol is involved. I currently have an F31 pre-doctoral training application through the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism under review to support these projects.

In addition to research in Dr. Cyders' lab, I am also involved in a NIDA-funded study through Dr. Leslie Hulvershorn's lab examining adolescents with substance use disorders as well as emotion and behavior-based risk factors for substance use.

Select Publications:

  1. Dir, A. L., Cyders, M. A., & Coskunpinar, A. (2013). From the bar to the bed via mobile phone: A first test of the role of problematic alcohol use, sexting, and impulsivity-related traits in sexual hookups. Computers in Human Behavior, 29, 1664-1670. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2013.01.039

  2. Dir, A. L., Coskunpinar, A., Steiner, J. L., & Cyders, M. A. (2013). Understanding differences in sexting behaviors across gender, relationship status, and sexual identity, and the role of expectancies in sexting. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 16, 568-574. doi:10.1089/cyber.2012.0545.

  3. Dir, A. L., Karyadi, K., & Cyders, M. A. (2013). The uniqueness of negative urgency as a common risk factor for self-harm behaviors, alcohol consumption, and eating problems. Addictive Behaviors, 38, 2158-2162. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2013.01.025

  4. Coskunpinar, A., Dir, A. L., & Cyders, M. A. (2013). Multidimensionality in impulsivity and alcohol use: A meta‐analysis using the UPPS model of impulsivity. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 37, 1441-1450. doi: 10.1111/acer.12131.



Faculty Advisor: