Dr. Victorâs primary research and clinical interests are in the field of neuropsychology. She received her BA in Psychology from the University of Kentucky where she assisted on an NIH-funded research project investigating the effects of neonatal cocaine and/or alcohol exposure on spatial learning and memory in a rodent model, projects examining cognitive malingering in a college sample, and the relationship between neuropsychological test scores and neuroimaging data. She obtained her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Michigan State University in 2004, with a specialization in the neuropsychology of aging. Her masterâs and dissertation examined the role of executive function, processing speed and working memory as mediators of age-related decline in verbal memory.
She came to Los Angeles to complete her clinical internship at the West Los Angeles Veterans Healthcare Center and then went on to complete a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center where she expanded upon her previous experience and interest in malingering research, and is currently working on several projects in this area. She is specifically interested in the false positive rate associated with use of effort (or malingering) tests in âhigh risk populationsâ such as individuals with mental retardation, dementia, or individuals for whom English is their second language. In fact, Dr. Victor recently received a grant from the Borchard Foundation on Law and Aging to fund an investigation into the use of effort tests during competency evaluations with individuals who may be demented. She is also interested in the role of acculturation and language in the relationship between ethnicity and neuropsychological test performance, in how to best interpret multiple effort test failure, and in the differentiation between somatization and malingering.
A selected list of publications:
Victor Tara L, Boone Kyle B, Kulick Alexis D
My head hurts just thinking about it
Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society : JINS,
1151-2; author reply 1153-4.