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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology

Sarah L. Tragesser

Associate Professor

Ph.D. Colorado State University, 2005

Contact Information

Office: CIC 125, Tri-Cities Campus
Phone: (509) 372-7388

Classes Taught

  • Psychology 321: Introduction to Personality Psychology
  • Psychology 350: Social Psychology
  • Psychology 401: Historical Development of Psychology
  • Psychology 401: Motivation

Research Interests

  • Personality
  • Personality Disorders
  • Substance Use

Dr. Tragesser studies the associations between personality, personality disorders, and substance use. In particular, she focuses on Borderline Personality Disorder features of affective instability/negative affectivity and impulsivity, and how these relate to alcohol and prescription opioid abuse and dependence. Because Dr. Tragesser works from a dimensional perspective, her research includes the use of both community and college student samples, as well as the study of individuals in treatment for chronic pain or substance use disorders. Dr. Tragesser is also interested in other aspects of personality, including its role in interpersonal relationships and a range of impulsive behaviors.

Recent Publications

Tragesser, S. L., Jones, R., Robinson, R. J., Stutler, A., & Stewart, A. (2013) Borderline Personality Disorder features and risk for prescription opioid use disorders. Journal of Personality Disorders, 27(4), 427-441.

Tomko, R. S., Brown, W. C., Tragesser, S. L., Wood, P. K., Mehl, M. R., & Trull, T. J. (in press). Social context of anger in Borderline Personality Disorder and Depressive Disorders: Findings from a naturalistic observation study. Journal of Personality Disorders.

Tragesser, S. L., & Benfield, J. (2012). Borderline Personality Disorder features and mate retention tactics. Journal of Personality Disorders, 26(3), 334-344.

Jahng, S., Trull, T. J., Wood, P. K., Tragesser, S. L., Tomko, R., Grant, J. D., Bucholz, K. K., & Sher, K. J. (2011). Distinguishing general and specific personality disorder features and implications for substance dependence comorbidity. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 120(3), 656-669.

Tragesser, S. L., Bruns, D., & Disorbio, M. (2010). Borderline Personality Disorder features and pain: The mediating role of negative affect in a patient sample. The Clinical Journal of Pain, 26(4), 348-353. *Also abstracted in Pain Management News and Research, May 2010.

Tragesser, S. L., Beauvais, F., Jumper-Thurman, P., & Burnside, M. (2010). Differences in Illicit Drug Use Rates Among Oklahoma and Non-Oklahoma Indian Youth. Substance Use & Misuse, 45(13), 2323-2339.

Tragesser, S. L., Solhan, M., Brown, W. C., Tomko, R. L., Bagge, C., & Trull, T. J. (2010). Longitudinal associations in Borderline Personality Disorder Features: Diagnostic Inter- view for Borderlines- Revised (DIB-R) scores over time. Journal of Personality Disorders, 24(3), 377-391.

For more publications, please see Dr. Tragesser’s Vita.

Sarah Tragesser