Willoughby B. Britton Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Assistant Professor of Behavioral and Social Sciences

Dr. Britton earned a B.A. in Neuroscience from Colgate University in 1996 and a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology form the University of Arizona in 2007.  She is the recipient of two National Research Service Awards (NRSA) and a Career Development Award (CDA) from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She is currently the Director of Brown’s Clinical and Affective Neuroscience Laboratory which investigates the psychophysiological (EEG, EMG, EKG) and neurocognitive effects of cognitive training and mindfulness-based interventions for mood and anxiety disorders. Research questions investigate which cognitive training practices are best or worst suited for which types of conditions and why, moderators of treatment outcome, practice-specific effects, and adverse effects. Current NIH-funded studies include a 3-armed RCT  entitled “Dismantling Mindfulness” that compares the effects of three different types of meditation training programs on pre-frontal cortex functioning in depression; and a collaborative infrastructure grant (UH2) with Harvard and UMASS entitled “Mindfulness Influences on Self-Regulation: Mental and Physical Health Implications”.  An interdisciplinary qualitative study entitled “The Varieties of Contemplative Experience,” is investigating under-reported and potentially challenging, distressing or impairing meditation-related effects.

As a clinician, she has been trained as an instructor in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), and has taught mindfulness to both clinical and non-clinical populations, and in federally-funded clinical trials. 

Brown Affiliations

Research Areas

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