photo of Donte Bernard
Assistant Professor
204D McAlester Hall
Tenured/Tenure Track
Research Interests

Dr. Bernard’s program of research examines the direct and indirect pathways by which racism compromises the mental and behavioral health and well-being of Black children, adolescents, and emerging adults. Equally important within his research agenda is the examination of culturally relevant protective factors that inform the degree to which Black youth remain resilient against the impact of racism across sensitive developmental periods. Anchored by cultural ecological models recognizing the importance of risk and resilience at the individual and contextual level, his research leverages both quantitative and qualitative methods to validate the lived experiences of Black communities by inserting their voices, perspectives, and experiences into scholarly spaces that have otherwise been exclusionary. Ultimately, the goal of his research is to eliminate racial disparities in mental and behavioral health through informing policy and intervention development targeting the reduction of racism and its related health consequences. Dr. Bernard’s research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.

Dr. Bernard’s current programs of research include:

  • Understanding the interplay among racism, traumatic stress, and health including characterizing the harmful effects of adverse childhood experiences among Black and other racially marginalized youth
  • Identifying cultural risk (e.g., John Henryism) and protective factors (e.g., racial identity) that may influence and/or explain the link between racism and health across critical developmental periods
  • Investigating the racialized nature of impostor phenomenon among Black emerging adults, including its relation to racism-related stressors and other culturally relevant factors

Dr. Donte Bernard is a licensed clinical psychologists and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at the University of Missouri. He earned his PhD in Clinical Psychology with a child and family emphasis at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed an APA accredited internship at the University of Miami Mailman Center for Child Development. Following his doctoral training, Dr. Bernard completed a NIMH-funded T-32 Postdoctoral Fellowship, specializing in traumatic stress, at the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Selected Publications
  • Bernard, D.L., Smith, Q., Lanier. P. J. (2022). Racial discrimination and other adverse childhood experiences as risk factors for internalizing mental health concerns among Black youth. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 35(2), 473-483.
  • Bernard, D.L., Calhoun, C. D., Banks, D.E., Halliday, C. A., Hughes-Halbert, C., & Danielson, C. K. (2021). Making the “C-ACE” for a culturally-informed adverse childhood experiences framework to understand the pervasive mental health impact of racism on Black youth. Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma, 14(2), 233-247.
  • Willis, H.A., Sosoo, E.E., Bernard, D.L., Neal, A., & Neblett, E.W. (2021). The associations between internalized racism, racial identity, and psychological distress. Emerging Adulthood, 9(4), 384-400.
  • Bernard, D. L., Jones, S. C.T., Volpe, V.V. (2020). Impostor phenomenon and psychological well-being: The moderating roles of John Henryism and racial composition of college campus. Journal of Black Psychology, 46(2-3), 195-227.
  • Bernard, D. L., Hoggard, L. S., & Neblett, E. W., Jr. (2018). Racial discrimination, racial identity, and impostor phenomenon: A profile approach. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 24(1), 51-61.
  • Cokley, K., Smith, L., Bernard, D. L., Hurst, A., Jackson, S., Stone, S., Awosogba, O, Saucer, C., Bailey, M., Roberts, D., (2017). Impostor feelings as a moderator and mediator of the relationship between perceived discrimination and mental health among ethnic minority college students. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 64(2), 141–154.
  • Neblett, E. W., Bernard, D. L., & Banks, K. H. (2016). The moderating roles of gender and socioeconomic status in the association between racial discrimination and psychological adjustment. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 23(3), 385-397