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CPH Research Centers

Center for Obesity Research and Education

Website: cph.temple.edu/core

Director: David B. Sarwer, PhD
Associate Dean for Research, College of Public Health
Professor, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Obesity represents one of our greatest public health challenges. More than one third of American adults are overweight and another third is obese. As a result, the majority of Americans are at risk for or already suffer from a number of significant weight-related health problems including heart disease, hypertension, Type 2 diabetes mellitus, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis and several forms of cancer.

A particular focus of the Center is obesity among children, adolescents and adults of lower socioeconomic status, with whom obesity is more prevalent. Specific areas of research focus include early life influences on obesity risk; the development of eating behavior during infancy and early childhood; the role of sleep in the development of childhood obesity; prevention and treatment of obesity for low-income children; psychosocial determinants of weight change among women during and after pregnancy; the delivery of weight loss interventions in medical settings; and the treatment of obesity with pharmacotherapy and surgical interventions.

CORE faculty also are dedicated to education and training. They regularly serve as instructors to undergraduate and medical students, serve as directors of research projects for master’s and doctoral degrees, and mentor junior faculty members from a number of fields which intersect with obesity. Faculty members regularly serve as invited speakers and visiting faculty at conferences and institutions around the world. They are dedicated to community outreach, regularly forming partnerships and providing educational activities to groups throughout Philadelphia and the region. 

Eleanor M. Saffran Center for Cognitive Neuroscience


Director: Nadine Martin, PhD
Professor, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders

The Eleanor M. Saffran Center’s core mission is to foster interdisciplinary, collaborative, clinical translational research within the broad domain of cognitive neuroscience. By studying the neurological bases of speech and language, in combination with theoretically grounded, evidence-based interventions, the center is at the forefront of translational research in communication disorders. 

Our research focuses on the rehabilitation of neurogenic communication disorders. Researchers in affiliated labs study the cognitive and neural bases of language, speech, memory, learning, emotional processing, spatial and motor abilities in both neurotypical populations and in people with neurogenic communication disorders (i.e., speech and language impairments secondary to brain injury). Some areas of research currently addressed in the Center include:

  • the underlying nature, assessment, and treatment of aphasia; 
  • brain functions underlying the cognitive representation of words and concepts in neurotypical adults and individuals with primary progressive;
  • treatment dosage required by individuals with childhood apraxia of speech and how gains correspond to current theories of speech motor control;
  • the role of auditory attention in the language development of individuals with autism.

The Saffran Center is also an educational resource for the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department, the College of Public Health, Temple University, and regional clinical and educational institutions.  We host the annual Eleanor M. Saffran Conference on Cognitive Neuroscience and Rehabilitation of Communication Disorders, a two-day conference including talks on foundational and applied research related to a topic in communication disorders and a translational workshop designed to foster greater communication between clinical researchers and clinicians serving children and adults with communication disorders.

To support and extend the work of the Saffran Center, the faculty welcomes collaborative research relationships with regional, national, and international institutions. The Center also accepts patient referrals particularly in the areas of stroke-based aphasia, primary progressive aphasia, and childhood apraxia of speech.

Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities

Website: tucollaborative.org

Director: Mark Salzer, PhD
Professor, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences

The Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion is engaged in research and knowledge development activities that are translated into practical information to support full and meaningful community participation of individuals with mental illnesses.The Collaborative receives funding as a Rehabilitation Research and Training Center through the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR). Through collaboration, the center aims to conduct state-of-the-art research and knowledge translation activities to improve opportunities for community inclusion of individuals with psychiatric disabilities.