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C. Richard Spates

Richard Spates

C. Richard Spates

Office: (269) 387-4329

2502 Wood Hall, Mail Stop 5439

Mailing address
Department of Psychology
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5439 USA

Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, University of Illinois, 1976
M.A., Clinical Psychology, University of Illinois, 1975
M.A., Behavior Analysis, Western Michigan University, 1972
B.S., Psychology, Western Michigan University, 1970

Dr. C. Richard Spates is a professor of psychology at Western Michigan University. After completing his Ph.D. degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana, Dr. Spates began his professional career as a Mental Health Executive with the Michigan Department of Mental Health in 1976. He held several positions of increasing responsibility with Michigan DMH until 1987, whereupon he assumed the role of Professor & Director of Clinical Training (DCT) in Psychology at Western Michigan University.  He served as Chair of the Department for 3 years during early 1990s, and return to the role of DCT in 1993. He directs the Anxiety Disorders Laboratory in the Department of Psychology.

Research interests

  • Introduction to Clinical Psychology
  • Cross-Cultural Psychology
  • Professional and Research Ethics

Area of expertise

  • Clinical psychology
    Dr. Spates supervises ongoing clinical and research teams of graduate students.  He and his students have published widely in the areas of anxiety disorders (i.e., specific fears, social anxiety), clinical depression, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). His laboratory work includes both applied (i.e., brief treatments of specific phobias, treatment of PTSD, treatment of social anxiety) and translational investigations (i.e. animal models of PTSD, role of d-cycloserine in enhancing outcomes of exposure-based therapies).  He has been especially interested in dismantling research with efficacious treatment packages, and more recently in mediation analyses.  Recent work in his Anxiety Disorders Laboratory has addressed the development and testing of computer-based interventions for both anxiety and depressive disorders, and their application to specific populations of interest (i.e. postpartum depression, geriatric depression, outpatient ambulatory populations). For a more complete description of recent research activity please follow the link to