Joe Albert Garcia

Joe Albert Garcia

Associate Professor
Phone: (657) 278-3153
Office: EC-482



I am the happy father of an incredible child named Diego and the happy husband of beautiful person named Marcia.  I continually strive for balance in my life ensuring that I spend as much time with family as is possible while pursuing my professional interests in making psychology applicable to real world settings.  I am the child of two life-long teachers and thus I value teaching as the most important aspect of university life.  To me, teaching is the core mission of university professors and our other responsibilities must come second to ensuring that our students become succesfull in college and beyond.   
 I have many hobbies and interests the most prominent of which are sports related. I am a professional Frisbee Golfer having played the sport for over 25 years with two professional tour wins to my credit.  I also love Ultimate Frisbee (a Div III sport in college) having played both at Berkeley as an undergraduate and at UCLA where I helped establish the team.  I also love college football, particularly when CAL is doing well, and I’m an avid card player (poker, hearts, spades, bridge).

Educational Background

I received my B.A. in Psychology from UC Berkeley in 1993 where I began working on major multi-site research project concerning children’s mental health.  I later entered UCLA’s Clinical Psychology program where I received my M.A. in 1998 while studying the reasons children leave mental health treatment prematurely.  I obtained a teaching degree, the C.Phil, from UCLA in 2002 and then my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, with a minor in statistics, from UCLA in 2003.  I studied the cost-effectiveness of treatments for ADHD children which was the project I began working on as undergraduate.

Research Interests

I have a general interest in studying the ways in which human service delivery goes from the university setting to actual practice.  Thus I am in interested in studying known best practices and how they can be delivered in actual practice- usually termed translational research.  My interests include why children leave treatment prematurely in real world settings rather than completing treatment and uncovering what factors lead to increased participation in treatment by families.  I am also interested in mental health economics. I feel it is imperative to add economic considerations in determining the best practices to be used by practitioners and agencies since economics play a big part in how these decisions are made at places such as HMO’s.  It is not enough to look to clinical outcomes, it is important to address economic decisions affect the treatments that are made available to clients.  My interests also extend to determining how more scientific assessment can be added to large areas of clinical practice such as child custody evaluations, an area that has largely developed outside the scope of university study.  Finally, I have a strong interest in determining how new technologies can improve student learning and engagement.