Paula Fite

Assistant Professor, Clinical Child Psychology Program
Primary office:


Research Interests

The lab's programmatic line of research focuses on developmental models of risk for child and adolescent problem behavior. That is, we are interested in the etiology and developmental progression of child and adolescent problem behavior - aggression, delinquency and substance use in particular. Consistent with social learning theory, which posits that behavior is learned and further exacerbated through socialization processes (i.e., modeling, conditioning, and reinforcement), our research has and will continue to examine the impact of social context (e.g., neighborhood, parents, and peers) and child characteristics (e.g., temperament) on the developmental progression of child and adolescent problem behavior.

Recent Publications

Peer Reviewed Publications

Fite, P. J., *Rubens, S., *Preddy, T. M., Raine, A., & Pardini, D. A. (in press). Reactive/Proactive Aggression and the Development of Internalizing Problems: The Moderating Effect of Parent and Peer Relationships. Aggressive Behavior.

Fite, P. J., *Hendrickson, M., *Rubens, S. L., *Gabrielli, J., & *Evans, S. (2013). The Role of Peer Rejection in the Link between Reactive Aggression and Academic Performance. Child and Youth Care Forum, 42, 193-205.

Fite, P. J., *Rathert, J. L., *Grassetti, S., *Gaertner, A. E., *Campion, S., & Fite, J. L., & *Vitulano, M. (2011). Longitudinal Investigation of the Link between Proactive and Reactive Aggression and Disciplinary Actions. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 33, 205-214.

Fite, P. J., Raine, A., Loeber, R., Stouthamer-Loeber, M., & Pardini, D. A. (2010). Reactive and Proactive Aggression in Adolescent Males: Examining Differential Outcomes 10 Years Later in Early Adulthood. Criminal Justice and Behavior 37(2), 141-157.

Fite, P. J., Stoppelbein, L., & Greening, L. (2009). Proactive and reactive aggression in a child psychiatric inpatient population. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 38, 199-205.

Fite, P. J., Colder, C. R., Lochman, J. E., & Wells, K. C. (2007). Pathways from proactive and reactive aggression to substance use. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 21, 355-364.

*Cooley, J. L., Fite, P. J., Rubens, S. L., & *Tunno, A. M. (in press). Peer Victimization, Depressive Symptoms, and Rule-Breaking Behavior in Adolescence: The Moderating Role of Peer Social Support. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment.

*Evans, S. C., Fite, P. J., *Hendrickson, M. L., *Rubens, S. L., & *Mages, A. (in press). The Role of Reactive Aggression in the Link between Hyperactive-Impulsive Behaviors and Peer Rejection in Adolescents. Child Psychiatry and Human Development.

Fite, P.J., *Brown, S. *Gabrielli, J., *DiPierro, M., *Pederson, C., *Blossom, J. B., *Cooley, J. L., & Bortolato, M. (in press). The role of negative life events in comorbid reactive aggression and marijuana use among Latino Adolescents. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma.

Fite, P. J., *Gabrielli, J., *Cooley, J. L., *Rubens, S. L., *Pederson, C. A., & Vernberg, E. M. (in press). Associations between Physical and Relational Forms of Peer Aggression and Victimization and Risk for Substance Use among Elementary School-Age Youth. Journal of Child and Adolescent Substance Abuse.

*Rathert, J., *Pederson, C. A., Fite, P. J., Stoppelbein, L., & Greening, L. (in press). Associations between Proactive and Reactive Aggression, Parenting Styles, and Externalizing Symptomatology in Children Admitted to a Psychiatric Inpatient Unit. Journal of Child and Family Studies.

Raiker, J. S., Greening, L., Stoppelbein, L., Becker, S. P., Fite, P. J., & Luebbe, A. M. (in press). Mediating Effect of Psychopathy on the Risk of Social Problems among Children with ADHD versus Sluggish Cognitive Tempo Symptoms. Child Psychiatry and Human Development.

Shorey, R. C., Fite, P. J., Choi, H., Cohen, J. R., Stuart, G. L., & Temple, J. R. (in press). Dating violence and substance use as longitudinal predictors of ethnically diverse adolescents' risky sexual behavior. Prevention Science.

*Shorey, R. C., *Sherman, A. E., *Brasfield, H., *Febres, J., Fite, P. J. & Stuart, G. L. (in press). The Moderating Effect of Perceived Support from a Dating Partner on the Association between Dating Violence Victimization and Adjustment. Violence Against Women.

Fite, P. J., Becker, S. P., Rubens, S. L., & *Cheetham-Johnson, R. (2015). Anxiety Symptoms Account for the Link between Reactive Aggression and Sleep Problems among Latino Adolescents. Child and Youth Care Forum, 44, 343-354.

Elkins, S., Fite, P. J., Moore, T., Lochman, J. E., & Wells, K. C. (2014). Bidirectional Effects of Parenting and Youth Substance Use during the Transition to Middle and High School. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 28, 475-486.

Fite, P. J., *Cooley, J. L., Williford, A., *Frazer, A., & *DiPierro, M. (2014). Parental School Involvement as a Moderator of the Association between Peer Victimization and Academic Performance. Children and Youth Services Review, 44, 25-32.

Fite, P.J., *Evans, S., *Cooley, J., & *Rubens, S. (2014). Further Evaluation of Associations between Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity and Oppositional Defiance Symptoms and Bullying-Victimization in Adolescence. Journal of Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 45, 32-41.

Fite, P. J., *Gabrielli, J., *Cooley, J. L., Haas, S. M., Frazer, A., Rubens, S. L., & Johnson-Motoyama, M. (2014). Hope as a Moderator of the Associations between Common Risk Factors and Frequency of Substance Use. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 36, 653-662.

Fite, P. J., *Hendrickson, M., *Evans, S., *Rubens, S. L., Johnson-Motoyama, M., & *Savage, J. (2014). Associations between Proactive and Reactive Subtypes of Aggression and Lifetime Substance Use in a Sample of Predominantly Hispanic Adolescents. Journal of Child and Adolescent Substance Abuse, 23, 398-406.

Fite, P. J., Johnson-Motoyama, M., *Rubens, S. L., & Peaches, A. (2014). Risk for Being a Teen Parent: The influence of Proactive and Reactive Aggression in a sample of Latino Adolescents. Child Indicators Research, 7, 437-450.

Harris, A. N., Stoppelbein, L., Greening, L., Becker, S., Luebbe, A., Fite, P. J. (2014).  Child routines and parental adjustment as correlates of internalizing and externalizing children diagnosed with ADHD.  Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 45, 243-253. 

*Pederson, C., & Fite, P. J. (2014). The impact of Parenting on the Associations between Child Aggression Subtypes and Oppositional Defiant Disorder Symptoms. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 45, 728-735.

*Preddy, T. M., Fite, P. J., *Wimsatt, A. R., *Vitulano, M. L., & *Gaertner, A. E. (2014). The Role of Intimate Exchange in the Link between Reactive Aggression and Child Depressive Symptoms. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 23, 510-520.

*Rubens, S. L., Fite, P. J., *Cooley, J. L., & *Canter, K. (2014). The Role of Sleep in the Relation between Community Violence Exposure and Delinquency among Latino Adolescents. Journal of Community Psychology, 42, 723-734.

Stoppelbein, L., Greening, L., Luebbe, A., Fite, P., & Becker, S (2014).  The role of cortisol and psychopathic traits in aggression among at-risk girls: Tests of mediating hypotheses.  Aggressive Behavior, 40, 263-272.

Williford, A., Fite, P. J., & *Cooley, J. L. (2014). Student-Teacher congruence in Reported Rates of Physical and Relational Victimization among Elementary School-Age Children” The Moderating Role of Gender and Age. Journal of School Violence, 13, 1-19.

*Vitulano, M. L., Fite, P. J., Hopko, D. R., Lochman, J. E., Wells, K., & Asif, I. (2014). Evaluation of Underlying Mechanisms in the Link between Childhood ADHD Symptoms and Risk for Early Initiation of Substance Use. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 28, 816-827.

*Denotes student authors


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