Faculty of Health

Professor Suzanne McLaren

Phone: (03) 5327 9628
Email: s.mclaren@federation.edu.au
Room: H229
Position: Head of Psychology


  • BA (Hons)
  • PhD

Teaching areas

  • Health psychology
  • Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Issues in Psychology
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Research Supervision

Professional associations

  • Member, American Association of Suicidology
  • Registered Psychologist
  • Editorial Board: Journal of Homosexuality

Research Interests 

Suzanne's main research interests are within the broad field of adult mental health. She is particularly interested in investigating the processes by which risk and protective factors influence mental health. Within this resilience framework, she has researched the influence that various social relationships (e.g., sense of belonging, social support, attachment, relationship satisfaction) can have on the relationship between risk (e.g., depression) and outcome (e.g., suicidal ideation). Other research investigates help-seeking intentions and behaviours among adults. Her research investigates resilience among a range of adult samples, with older adults and gay, lesbian, and bisexual adults featuring prominently in her work. Suzanne offers postgraduate supervision within the broad context of resilience, which could include variables such as place of residence/geographical remoteness; social relationships, especially social support and sense of belonging; depression and suicide; reasons for living; sexual orientation; older adults; and help-seeking. 

Publications (last 5 years)

Book Chapters

Selkirk, R., McLaren, S., Ollerenshaw, A., McLachlan, A. J., & Moten, J. (2010). The longitudinal effects of midwife-led postnatal debriefing on the psychological health of mothers. In A. Meleis (Ed.), Transitions theory: Middle range and situation specific theories in nursing research and practice (pp. 590-602). New York: Springer.

Gomez, R., & McLaren, S. (2010). The interrelations of perceptions of family adaptability and cohesion, self-esteem, and anxiety/depression in late adolescence. In M. Russo and A. De Luca (Eds.), Psychology of Family Relationships (pp. 115-132). New York: Nova Publishers.

Refereed Articles

Davidson, K., McLaren, S., Jenkins, M., Corboy, D., Gibbs, P. M., & Molloy, M. (accepted). Internalized homophobia, sense of belonging and depression among Australian gay men. Journal of Homosexuality.

Botterill, E., Gill, P. R., McLaren, S., & Gomez, R. (accepted). Marital status and problem gambling among Australian older adults: The mediating role of loneliness. Journal of Gambling Studies.

McLaren, S. (2016). The interrelations between internalized homophobia, depression and suicidal ideation among Australian lesbians, bisexual women, and gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 63(2), 156-168.

DeAraugo, J., McLaren, S., McManus, P., & McGreevy, P. D (2016). Improving the understanding of psychological factors contributing to horse-related accident and injury: Context, loss of focus, cognitive factors and rigidity. Animals, 6, 12.

Sadler, P., McLaren, S., Klein, B., Jenkins, M., & Harvey, J. (2015). Cognitive behaviour therapy for older adults experiencing insomnia and depression in a community mental health setting: Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials, 16, 538.

McLaren, S., & Schurmann, J., & Jenkins, M. (2015). The relationships between sense of belonging to a community GLB youth group; school, teacher, and peer connectedness; and depressive symptoms: Testing of a path model. Journal of Homosexuality, 62, 1688-1702.

Chesler, J., McLaren, S., Klein, B., & Watson, S. (2015). The effects of playing Nintendo Wii on depression, sense of belonging and social support in Australian aged care residents: A protocol study of a mixed methods intervention trial. BMC Geriatrics, 15, 106.

Gomez, R., & McLaren, S. (2015). The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale: Support for a bifactor model with a dominant general factor and a specific factor for positive affect. Assessment, 22, 351-360.

Morris, S., McLaren, S., McLachlan, A. J., & Jenkins, M. (2015). Sense of belonging to specific communities and depressive symptoms among Australian gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 62(6), 804-820.

Gomez, R., McLaren, S., Sharp, M., Smith, C., Hearn, K., & Turner, L. (2015). Dispositional Hope Scale: Factor structure and external correlates, and cross-gender invariance. Journal of Personality Assessment, 92, 191-199.

Hanley, S., & McLaren, S. (2015). Sense of belonging to layers of lesbian community weakens the link between body Image dissatisfaction and depressive symptoms. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 39, 85-94.

McLaren, S. (2015). Gender, age, and place of residence as moderators of the internalized homophobia-depressive symptoms relation among Australian gay men and lesbians. Journal of Homosexuality, 62(4),463-480.

Gomez, R., & McLaren, S. (2015). The Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale: Measurement and structural invariance across ratings of older adult men and women. Personality and Individual Differences, 75, 130-134.

McLaren, S., Gomez, R., Gill, P., & Chesler, J. (2015). Marital status and suicidal ideation among Australian older adults: The mediating role of sense of belonging. International Psychogeriatrics, 27, 145-154.

Abbott, J. M., Klein, B., McLaren, S., Austin, D. W., Molloy, M., Meyer, D., & McLeod, B. (2014). Out & Online; effectiveness of a tailored online multi-symptom mental health and wellbeing program for same-sex attracted young adults: Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials, 15, 504.

Corboy, D., McLaren, S., Jenkins, M., & McDonald, J. (2014). The relationship between geographic remoteness and intentions to use a telephone support service among Australian men following radical prostatectomy. Psycho-Oncology, 23, 1259-1266.

DeAraugo, J., McLean, A., McLaren, S., Caspar, G., McLean, M., & McGreevy, P. (2014). Human-horse attachment: The role of commonplace training methods. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research, 9, 235-241.

McLaren, S., Turner, J., Gomez, R., McLachlan, A. J., & Gibbs, P. M. (2013). Housing Type, Sense of Belonging and Depressive Symptoms among Older Adults: A Test of Mediation and Moderation Models. Aging and Mental Health, 17, 1023-1029.

Sadler, P., McLaren, S., & Jenkins, M. (2013). A cognitive pathway from insomnia to depression among older adults. International Psychogeriatrics, 25, 1375-1383.

Kousari-Rad, P., & McLaren, S. (2013). The relationships between sense of belonging to the gay community, body image dissatisfaction and self-esteem among Australian gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 60, 927-943.

McLaren, S., Gibbs, P. M., & Watts, E. (2013). The interrelations among age, sense of belonging and depressive symptoms among gay men and lesbians. Journal of Homosexuality, 60 (1), 1-15.

McLaren, S. (2011). Age, gender and reasons for living among Australian adults. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, 41, 650-660.

Corboy, D., McLaren, S., & McDonald, J. (2011). Predictors of support service use by rural and regional men with cancer. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 19, 185-190.

Corboy, D., McDonald, J., & McLaren, S. (2011). Barriers to accessing psychosocial support services: Perceptions of men with cancer and health professionals in rural Australia. International Journal of Men's Health, 10(2), 163-183.

Turner, L., & McLaren, S. (2011). Social support and sense of belonging as protective factors in the rumination-depressive symptoms relation among Australian women. Women & Health, 51, 151-167.

McCallum, C., & McLaren, S. (2011). Sense of Belonging and Depressive Symptoms among Australian Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Adolescents. Journal of Homosexuality, 58 (1), 83-96.

Grants (last 5 years)

Klein, B., Stranieri, A., Dazeley, R.,Clinnick, L., McLaren, S., & Balasubramanian, V. (2014). Supporting aged care nursing staff to electronically manage resident's behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia in real time. Telematics Trust Fund. Awarded: $29,855.

Klein, B., Stranieri, A., Vamplew, P., McLaren, S. (2013). Progressing the BlueWatch concept. Collaborative Research Network. Awarded: $5000

Stranieri, A., Dazeley, R., Klein, B., Vamplew, P., Balasubramanian, V., Smith, P., McLaren, S., Molloy, M., Noble, D., & Clinnick, L (2013). Expert driven reinforcement learning for real time biophysical and social assessment of wellbeing. University of Ballarat SITE Seeding Grant. Awarded: $4,350

Klein, B. McLaren, S., & Austin, D. (2010-2012). Evaluation of a tailored online same-sex attracted youth (SSAY) focused trans-diagnostic mental health and wellbeing program. beyondblue.Awarded: $124,857

Corboy, D., & McLaren, S. (2010-2012). Telephone-based and face-to-face support: A model for support service use among Australian men with prostate cancer. Grampians Integrated Cancer Services. Awarded: $15,000

Mulready, P., Knight, T., Wood, G., & McLaren, S. (2010). Making learning connections: Student perceptions of their learning and professional identity formation in their first year of higher education. UB-Deakin Collaboration. Awarded: $20,000

Research Higher Degree Completions (last 5 years)

Jessica Chesler, Master of Applied Science (Psychology), 2015: The Effects of Playing Nintendo Wii on Depression, Sense of Belonging, Social Support, and Mood among Australian Aged Care Residents: A Pilot Study

Denise Corboy, Doctor of Philosophy, 2013: Telephone-based and face-to-face psychosocial support: Models for support service use among Australian men following radical prostatectomy

Tara Darby, Doctor of Psychology, 2012: Maternal Dissonance and Social Relationships as Predictors of Postnatal Depression Symptoms

Kenneth Davidson, Doctor of Psychology, 2012: The relationship between internalised homophobia, sense of belonging to specific communities and depression among self-identified gay men

Paul Sadler,Master of Applied Science (Psychology), 2012: Insomnia, dysfunctional beliefs about sleep, hopelessness and depression among older adults: The development and testing of a path modeltPara�-�YcѬ