School of Health and Life Sciences

Professor Suzanne McLaren

Phone: (03) 53279628
Room: H229
Position: Head of Psychology
Discipline: Psychology


  • PhD
  • BA (Hons)

Teaching areas

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

Psychology Board of Australia

  • General registration
  • Health endorsement

Professional associations

  • Member, American Association of Suicidology
  • Member, Suicide Prevention Research Leaders’ Network

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)

Refereed Articles

Riley, K., Gent, A., McLaren, S., Caunt, J., & Stavropolous, V. (accepted). The fatigue and depressive symptoms relationship in mothers of young children: The moderating role of mindfulness. Mindfulness.

Trezise, A., McLaren, S., Gomez, R., Bice, B., & Hodgetts, J. (accepted). Resiliency among older Adults: Dispositional hope as a protective factor in the insomnia-depressive symptoms relation. Ageing and Mental Health.

Gomez, R., & McLaren, S. (2017). The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale: Support for a bifactor model in heterosexual men, heterosexual women, gay men, and lesbians. Psychological Assessment, 29(4), 361-371.

Davidson, K., McLaren, S., Jenkins, M., Corboy, D., Gibbs, P. M., & Molloy, M. (2017). Internalized homonegativity, sense of belonging and depression among Australian gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 64(4), 450-465.

McLaren, S. (2016). The relationship between living alone and depressive symptoms among older gay men: The moderating role of sense of belonging with gay friends. International Psychogeriatrics, 28, 1895-1901.

Botterill, E., Gill, P. R., McLaren, S., & Gomez, R. (2016). Marital status and problem gambling among Australian older adults: The mediating role of loneliness. Journal of Gambling Studies, 32, 1027-1038.

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.

Grants (last 5 years)

Klein, B., & McLaren, S. (2017). Review & Evaluation of Wimmera Uniting Care Service Team Procedures: Implementing a Solution Extension. Wimmera Uniting Care. Awarded: $33,000.

Klein, B., & McLaren, S. (2016). Review and evaluation of Wimmera Uniting Care (Horsham) service intake team procedures. Wimmera Uniting Care. Awarded: $17,740.

Klein, B., & McLaren, S. (2016). 'My Digital Health' Pilot Site Trial Research Collaboration. Wimmera Uniting Care. Awarded: $27,235.

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

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