Fortaleza Mexicana Study (Mexican Resilience Study)

Supervising Faculty: Andrea S. Mora, Ph.D.

Contact: Dr. Andrea Mora,

Area of Research: risk and resilience, Mexican families, violence, academic and psychological well-being

Description of Research: This mixed methods study explores Mexican families' experiences with neighborhood violence. Specifically, this research project focuses on 200 parent-adolescent dyads residing in a low-income rural neighborhood in Mexico. The study aims to (a) explore Mexican parents’ educational beliefs, aspirations, and expectations for their adolescents; (b) assess Mexican parent and adolescents’ mental health outcomes (i.e., perceived stress, depressive symptoms, and PTSD symptoms); (c) explore Mexican parent and adolescents’ experiences with violence exposure, coping strategies, and their communication about violence, and (d) explore families’ determinants of and barriers to mental health service utilization.

Duties of Students: Students will attend lab meetings and complete some lab hours in our Sennott Square lab space, while some work will be done remotely. Lab tasks and responsibilities will include completing readings and participating actively in lab meetings, conducting literature reviews, compiling readings in Zotero, conducting annotated bibliographies, transcribing qualitative interviews, and completing various lab-related administrative tasks. We will discuss and provide education about the broad range of methods we use in our project, including qualitative interviewing, survey-based studies, and the integration of mixed methods. 


  • Overall GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • 12 credits of Psychology (including current term)
  • STAT 0200/1000/1100 - Statistics
  • PSY 0036 and 0037- Research Methods Lecture and Lab

Additional Requirements: 

  • Proficiency with basic computing tasks.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Availability for at least 2 terms, and ability to commit to at least 2 credits per term.
  • Proficiency in Spanish a plus, but not required.

Terms Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer

Number of Students: Up to 4 students