Melissa Curran, PhD

Associate Professor, Family and Consumer Sciences
Research Director, Take Charge America Institute
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Communication
Phone Number: 
(520) 621-7140

UACC Information

Professional Bio: 

Dr. Curran has been a faculty member at the University of Arizona since 2006.  Much of her research has been guided by attachment and interdependence theory, as well as from other relevant theories and lenses (e.g., symbolic interactionism, family systems, commitment, feminism, queer theory).

Initially, her focus was specific to attachment representations and marital quality during the transition to parenthood for new parents.  Her focus expanded to include interpersonal topics including relational sacrifices and commitment, as well as the study of cohabitors.  She bridged these aforementioned areas of study with a focus on examining the transition to parenthood for pregnant, unmarried, cohabitors.

Dr. Curran continues to study relational sacrifices and relationship quality (e.g., commitment, satisfaction), as well as beliefs about relationships and marriage.  In much of her research she takes a dyadic approach (e.g,, Actor-Partner Interdependence Models).  She is especially interested in understanding romantic relationships using daily diary data given the statistical advantages of daily diary data (e.g., fixed effects, within-person variability, and lagged effects of relationship qualty constructs such as satisfaction and commitment).

Finally, Dr. Curran collaborates with colleagues in two other areas: finances (i.e., in samples of emerging adults and during and after the transition to parenthood) and cancer (i.e., experiences of "co-survivors," and health experiences for women diagnosed with breast cancer as predicted from relationship characteristics).

Research Information

Research Program: 
Cancer Prevention and Control
Membership Type: 
Affiliate Member
Year of Membership Acceptance: 
Research Focus: 

More information on Dr. Curran's research can be found at the College of Agriculture &Life Sciences

Academic Information

Human Development & Family Studies, University of Texas at Austin