Alex Bierman, PhD

PhD in Sociology, University of Maryland, College Park, United States

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Areas of Research

Sociology of mental health; aging; quantitative research methods; social psychology; sociology of religion
Alex Bierman’s research is centered on the study of aging and health, but encompasses a number of additional topics, including social psychology, religion, military sociology, and the family. This research is united by an interest in how social inequality conditions both exposure to stress and the consequences of stress as individuals age. Dr. Bierman frequently utilizes advanced methods of longitudinal data analysis in these studies as a means of facilitating a rigorous understanding of the causes and consequences of stress exposure across the life-course. Dr. Bierman is currently engaged in two major research projects. First, the CAFE Study is a national longitudinal survey of over 4,000 Canadian older adults between 2021 and 2022 that examines how caregiving and financial conditions influence the mental health of Canadian older adults. Social psychology plays a central role in this study, as it examines how attitudes about one’s self and social relationships--including self-esteem, mastery, mattering, and loneliness--intercede in the mental health effects of caregiving and financial stress. Second, the C-QWELS (pronounced “sequels”) study is a multi-pronged national longitudinal study of working Canadians prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a part of this study, Dr. Bierman has published research on the health effects of changes in social isolation, loneliness, and social trust, as well as financial stress.

Supervising degrees

Sociology - Doctoral: Accepting Inquiries
Sociology - Masters: Accepting Inquiries

Working with this supervisor

Dr. Bierman appreciates working with students who seek to understand how social stratification reaches into individual lives and shapes psychological well-being.  He especially encourages prospective students to contact him if they are interested in applying quantitative methods of analysis to large-scale social surveys as a means of examining the repercussions of social inequality for mental health.  Prior to contacting Dr. Bierman, prospective students should examine work that Dr. Bierman has published in the last five years.  When contacting Dr. Bierman, prospective students should make sure to indicate what it is about this work that leads to an interest in supervision.  A list of Dr. Bierman's publications can be found on his ResearchGate page or his Google Scholar page.

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