Andrew J. Waters, Ph.D.

Andrew J. Waters, Ph.D.

Andrew J. Waters

Name: Andrew J. Waters, Ph.D.

Department of Primary Appointment: Medical & Clinical Psychology
Position: USU Faculty
Title: Full Professor & Director of Graduate Studies

Email: (link sends e-mail)
Office Phone: (301) 295-9675
Room: B3050

Department Website
Lab Website


Nottingham University



Full Professor of Medical & Clinical Psychology
Director, Graduate Studies
Education: B.A. (1989), M.A. (2003) University of Cambridge (Natural Sciences); Ph.D. (1995) Nottingham University (Psychology)

Laboratory of Cognitive Interventions (LOCI)

Research and Teaching

Research Topics: Andrew J. Waters, Ph.D., received his Ph.D. in experimental cognitive psychology. He has subsequently focused on the area of cognition and psychopathology, with a special emphasis on the addictions. Dr. Waters's research involves three intersecting themes. One theme is to use tasks derived from human experimental cognitive psychology to help us measure the cognitive processes - implicit and explicit - that underlie addiction (and other psychopathologies). For example, he has shown that measures derived from computerized tasks administered in laboratory settings tell us information about addiction over and above the information derived from questionnaires. A second theme is to administer cognitive tasks on personal digital assistants (PDAs) or Smartphones using Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA). This affords the collection of rich datasets on cognitive processes in a real world setting. A third theme is to use modified cognitive tasks as interventions to change cognition and behavior. Dr. Waters directs the Laboratory of Cognitive Interventions (LOCI). Cognitive retraining interventions can be delivered in a laboratory or on a mobile device such as a PDA or a Smartphone. Currently the laboratory is examining the efficacy of a cognitive retraining intervention delivered on a Smartphone. Ultimately, cognitive and other interventions might be delivered on a Smartphone when the individual is most in need of the intervention (EMI, Ecological Momentary Intervention). Other research interests include: unconscious cognition; smoking and PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder); cognitive expertise; decision making; psychology of music; psychology of terrorism.

Methods and Approach: Field-based studies using Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) with PDAs and Smartphones; laboratory-based studies investigating novel medications for addiction; smoking cessation studies; cognitive retraining interventions delivered using PDAs and Smartphones.

Current Grant Support: Currently Dr. Waters is Principal Investigator on a grant from the National Cancer Institute to study attentional retraining in smoking cessation using Smartphones, and Joint Principal Investigator on a grant from the National Institute on Drugs Abuse to study the effect of a cognitive-enhancing medication on smoking behavior.

Medical Student Teaching: Lectures on "Medical Decision Making" and "Behavioral, Cognitive, Motivational, and Social Treatments for Addiction".

Graduate Student Teaching: Instructor for Cognitive Psychology (MPO539); Instructor for Experimental Statistics I (IDO502); Guest Lecturer on EMA in Research Methods II (MPO902); Guest Lecturer on Medical Decision Making in Health Psychology (MPO605); Guest Lecturer on the Cognitive Revolution in History & Systems in Psychology (MPO519).

Mentoring: Dr. Waters currently supervises 6 Ph.D. students and 2 post-doctoral fellows.

Selected Recent Publications

Waters, A. J., Marhe, R., & Franken, I. H. A. (2012). Attentional bias to drug cues is elevated before and during temptations to use heroin and cocaine. Psychopharmacology, 219, 909-921.

Sofuoglu, M., De Vito, E., Waters, A. J., & Carroll, K. M. (2012). Cognitive enhancement as a treatment for drug addictions. Neuropharmacology, 64, 452-463.

Marhe, R., Waters, A. J., van de Wetering, B. J., & Franken, I. H. A. (2013). Implicit and explicit drug-related cognitions during detoxification treatment predict drug relapse: An ecological momentary assessment study. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 81, 1-12.

Waters, A. J., Szeto, E., Wetter, D. W., Cinciripini, P. M., Robinson, J. D., & Li, Y. (2013). Cognition and craving during smoking cessation: An Ecological Momentary Assessment study. Nicotine and Tobacco Research (in press)

Professional Activities

Selected Awards and Honors: Dr. Waters is a member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, the British Psychological Society, the American Psychological Association, and the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.