Campus: UMD | Building: School of Public Health | Room: 2366
Phone: (301) 405-2527 |
Office Hours: 

Tuesday 11:00 – 12:00 & 2:00 – 4:00 Thursday 11:00 – 12:00 & 2:00 – 3:30

CV / Resume
PDF icon VITA Beck.pdf

Dr. Beck’s interests include the determinants of threat perception and risk-taking, including alcohol misuse and traffic injury prevention. His research has dealt with adolescents, parents, as well as multiple alcohol offenders.  He conducted the first randomized trial of alcohol ignition interlocks. His research helped form Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration policy concerning how DUI offenders are reinstated for licensure. He has also investigated the social contexts of drinking among adolescents and young adults and helped define a consistent relationship between a unique set of social and motivational factors (contexts) of drinking and different patterns of alcohol abuse.  He has worked with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Maryland Highway Safety Office to evaluate their current drunk driving prevention campaign entitled “Checkpoint Strikeforce.”  He has also collaborated with the Prevention Research Branch of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development on parent-adolescent health research.  His research has been funded by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the Maryland Department of Transportation, and the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.  He has published widely in health and safety journals and made numerous presentations nationally and internationally.

Education and Training

Pennsylvania State University, B.S. 05/72 Psychology

Syracuse University, M.A. 05/75 Social Psychology

Syracuse University, Ph.D. 05/77 Social Psychology

University of Connecticut Health Science Center Postdoctoral, 08/79 Health Behavior


HLTH 106          “Drug Use and Abuse”

HLTH 230          “Health Behavior”

HLTH 371          “Communicating Safety and Health”

HLTH 710          “Methods and Techniques of Research”

HLTH 688D       “Advanced Topics in Impaired Driving Research”

HLTH 775          “Health Education Program Planning and Evaluation” 

Honors and Awards

2011     Beck-Feldman Research Award, created to honor outstanding department undergraduate researchers in recognition of the  research careers of Drs. Beck and Feldman. 

2009     AAHB Conference Outstanding Research Poster

2005     Maryland Highway Safety Office, Impaired Driving Award

2003     Who’s Who in Health Science Education

2000     Elected Fellow, the American Academy of Health Behavior         

1995     Elected Member, the International Council on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety



(Last 5 Years)

Lee, C.J., Geiger-Brown, J. & Beck, K.H. (2016). Intention and willingness to drive drowsy among university students: An application of an extended  theory of planned behavior model. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 93, 113-123.

Beck, K.H. & Watters, S. (2016).  Characteristics of college students who text while driving: Do perceptions of a significant other influence their decisions?  Transportation Research Part F , 37, 119-128.

Watters, S.E. & Beck, K.H. (2016).  A Qualitative study of college students’ perceptions of risky driving and social influences.  Traffic Injury Prevention, 17 (2), 122-127..

Beck, K.H., Kelley-Baker, T. & Voas, R.B.  (2015). DUI offenders’ experience with an ignition interlock program: Comparing those who have and have not adapted from their primary drinking location.  Traffic Injury Prevention, 16 (4), 329-335.

Beck, K.H., Ali, B. & Daughters, S.B. (2014). Distress tolerance as a predictor of risky and aggressive driving. Traffic  Injury Prevention, 15, 349-354.

Yao, J., Johnson, M.B. & Beck, K.H.  (2014). Predicting DUI decisions in different legal environments: Investigating deterrence with a conjoint experiment. Traffic  Injury Prevention, 15, 213-221.  

Ali, B., Ryan, J.S., Beck, K.H., & Daughters, S.B. (2013).  Trait aggression and problematic alcohol use: The moderating effect of distress tolerance. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 37(12), 2138-2144.

Bozzolo, C., Beck, KH, Wang, MQ. (2013).  Exploratory study of the burden of nonurgent visits to the emergency department of a hospital in Washington, DC.  American Journal of Health Studies, 28, 50 – 60.

Sharma, E., Beck, KH., & Clark, P.I. (2013).  Social context of smoking hookah among college students: Scale development and validation. The Journal of American College Health, 61, 204-211.

Beck, K.H., Daughters, S.B, & Ali, B. (2013).  Hurried driving: Relationship to distress tolerance, driver anger, aggressive and risky driving in college students. Accident Analysis & Prevention. 51, 51-55.

Beck, K.H., Ahmed, A.U. & Farkas, Z.A. (2013)  Characteristics of DUI offenders with a high versus low perceived risk of arrest. Traffic Injury Prevention, 14, 1-6.

Beck, K.H., Caldeira, K.M, Vincent, K.B. & Arria, A.M. (2013).  Social contexts of drinking and subsequent alcohol use disorder among college students. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 39 (1), 38-43.

Rath, J.M., Sharma, E., & Beck, K.H. (2013).  Establishing reliability and validity of the Glover-Nilsson Smoking Behavioral Questionnaire.  American Journal of Health Behavior, 37 (3), 310-317.

Beck, K.H, Gianni, T.J. (2012). Training the future leaders in DUI enforcement: the University of Maryland’s DUI Institute.  The Police Chief, May, 68 – 69.

Beck, K.H., Wang, M.Q., & Yan, A.F. (2012).  Hurried driver dispositions: Their relationship to risky traffic behaviors.  American Journal of Health Behavior, 36 (1), 86-95.

Yan, F., Voorhees, C.C., Zhang, G., Beck, K.H., Huang, S. & Wei, H. (2011).  A  Multilevel Investigation on the socio-demographic and urban neighborhood effects on out of school physical activity among inner city minority adolescents.  American Journal of Health Studies, 26 (3), 121-


Debnam, K, & Beck, K.H.  (2011).  Driving while Black: A comparison of the beliefs, concerns and behaviors of White and Black Maryland drivers. Traffic Injury Prevention, 12 (6), 599-603.

Beck, K.H., Ahmed, A., & Farkas, Z.A. (2011). A descriptive analysis of the social context of drinking among first-time DUI offenders. Traffic Injury Prevention, 12 (4), 306-311.

Thesis/MPH Projects Chaired

(last 5 years)

Gleason, J. (2016). Exploring health in military families: Does continuity of care influence patient satisfaction?  Masters of Public Health Thesis.

Perper, E. (2015). A descriptive study of program implementation among a group of high achieving coalitions in the Drug-Free Communities program.  Masters of Public Health Thesis.

Brooks, A. T. (2015). Sleep throughout the alcoholism recovery process: A mixed-methods examination of individuals' experiences transitioning from an inpatient research facility providing rehabilitation treatment to the community. Doctoral Dissertation.

Lee, C. (2014). Intention and willingness to drive while drowsy in a population of university students in Maryland:  Application of an extended theory of planned behavior model.  Masters of Public Health Thesis.

Breitenother, L.  (2013). Online version of advanced studies in impaired driving.  Masters of Public Health Project.

Matsuo, G. (2013).  What Maryland dentists know and do about preventing dental caries.  Masters of Public Health Thesis.

Aluko, T. (2012).  Medical Students’ Beliefs Towards Screening For Intimate Partner Violence: A Qualitative Study.  Masters of Public Health Thesis.

DeRidder, A. (2011). A web-based ergonomic program for medical students to prevent cumulative trauma disorders.  Masters of Public Health Project.