Michelle P. Salyers Ph.D.

Professor, Psychology
Director, Clinical Psychology Program
Director, ACT Center of Indiana
Affiliated Scientist, Regenstrief Institute, Inc.


1998 Ph.D., Clinical Rehabilitation Psychology - Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
1996 M.S., Clinical Rehabilitation Psychology - IUPUI
1989 B.S., Psychology - Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana

Current Research

              My broad area of research interest is psychiatric rehabilitation, focusing on adults with severe mental illnesses, and I believe mental health services should be based on the best available evidence and address the skills and supports consumers of those services need in order to manage illnesses more independently and achieve recovery goals. My work addresses the level of consumers, staff, and mental health programs.
              At the consumer level, living successfully with chronic health conditions requires that consumers become active collaborators in illness management. I have been developing a program of research to address this area using the Illness Management and Recovery (IMR) program.  IMR is a curriculum-based approach to helping consumers set and achieve personal recovery goals and acquire the knowledge and skills to independently manage their illnesses.  IMR brings together five empirically supported interventions: psychoeducation, cognitive-behavioral approaches to medication adherence, relapse prevention, social skills training, and coping skills training (http://act.psych.iupui.edu/content/illness-management-and-recovery).  We have completed several studies of this intervention including a randomized controlled trial of IMR for people with schizophrenia funded by the VA.  I collaborate with colleagues who study measures of fidelity, supervision, and ways to better implement these practices here and abroad.
              Mental health providers work under a great deal of pressure, often without much support or financial incentives.  Turnover rates are high, and burnout can be a large problem.  My dissertation was focused on understanding staff burnout, and recently I have returned to this topic.  Working with colleagues across the country, we developed a staff burnout intervention and have begun testing the program (called BREATHE).  Our pilot work showed promising results, and we are expanding this research into more rigorous testing of the intervention over longer periods of time.  We have received federal funding from NIMH, VA and PCORI to more rigorously test the BREATHE intervention.  We have begun to adapt BREATHE for a number of other professions, including cancer care and primary care providers, librarians, and probation officers.  Most recently, I am part of a team funded by IES to adapt BREATHE to address burnout among special education teachers (Lisa Ruble as PI). I have also been conducting work on staff beliefs and attitudes about recovery because this can be a critical part of helping consumers in their own recovery.
              At the program level, I am interested in how to help mental health service providers deliver services that are based on the best research evidence.  Much of my work in this area has been with Assertive Community Treatment.  At the program level, we provide training and consultation, we measure program implementation (fidelity) and consumer outcomes, and we work with policy makers to help establishing funding that will encourage evidence-based practice. I am part of a team funded by VA HSR&D to study care in inpatient settings across the VA (Alan McGuire as PI).

See the ACT Center of Indiana website for more information(http://act.psych.iupui.edu/) about our research, faculty, staff, and students.

See IUPUI ScholarWorks for links to many of my published papers https://scholarworks.iupui.edu/discover?filtertype=author&filter_relational_operator=contains&filter=salyers)

I will be taking new students for 2018-2019 (Applications due Dec 1, 2017).  If your interests are a good fit, I encourage you to apply this fall!

Select Publications

 (Student authors are italicized)

Bonfils, K. A., Dreison, K. C., Luther, L., Fukui, S., Dempsey, A. E., Rapp, C. A., Salyers, M. P. (in press). Implementing CommonGround in a Community Mental Health Center: Lessons in a Computerized Decision Support System. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal.

Kukla, M., Strasburger, A.M., Salyers, M.P., Rattray, N.A., & Lysaker, P.H. (in press). Subjective experiences of the benefits and key elements of a cognitive behavioral intervention focused on community work outcomes in persons with mental illness. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease.

Stull, L. G., McConnell, H., McGrew, J. Salyers, M. P. (in press). Explicit and implicit stigma of mental illness as predictors of recovery attitudes. Israel Journal of Psychiatry

Bonfils, K. A., Luther, L., Firmin, R. L, Minor, K. S., Salyers, M. P. (in press). Language and hope in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders. Psychiatry Research

Salyers, M. P., Fukui, S., Bonfils, K. A., Firmin, R. L., Luther, L., Goscha, R. J., Rapp, C. A., Holter, M. C. (in press). Consumer outcomes in implementing CommonGround as an approach to shared decision-making. Psychiatric Services.

Firmin, R.L., Luther, L., Lysaker, P. H., Minor, K. S., McGrew, J. H., Cornwell, M. N., Salyers, M. P. (in press). Stigma resistance at the personal, peer, and public levels: A new conceptual model. Stigma and Health

Dreison, K., Luther, L., Bonfils, K. A., McGrew, J. H., Sliter, M. T., & Salyers, M. P. (in press). Job Burnout in Mental Health Providers: A Meta-Analysis of 35 Years of Intervention Research. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology

Bonfils, K. A., Rand, K. L., Luther, L., Firmin, R. L., Salyers, M. P. (in press). The Romantic Relationship Functioning Scale: Development and Preliminary Validation in Two Samples. Journal of Behavioral and Social Sciences 

McGuire, A. B., Bartholomew, T., Anderson, A., Bauer, S., McGrew, J., White, D. A., Luther, L., Rollins, A., Pereira, A., Salyers, M. P. (in press). Illness management and recovery in community practice. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal

Links to many of my publications can be found here: 


or here: