Robert E. Davis

Robert E. Davis

Assistant Professor


(HHPR)-Health, Human Performance, & Recreation

Phone: 479-575-8612

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Dr. Robert E. Davis is an Assistant Professor of Public Health and director of the Substance Use and Mental Health Laboratory (SUMH) in the Department of Health, Human Performance, and Recreation at the University of Arkansas. Dr. Davis’s education and research training comes in the field of health behavior and promotion. He earned his Ph.D. in Health Behavior with a minor in Applied Statistics from the University of Mississippi. His research training was largely epidemiologic in nature, using both primary and secondary data techniques.


Dr. Davis’s principal research interests focus on the behavioral domain of substance use. Within this domain, affective dysregulation and other facets of mental health are prioritized. Dr. Davis is also a firm proponent of the study of behavioral theory. In this research, behavioral theory is often used as a lens through which to conceptualize behavior and inform intervention. Although substance use is his behavioral domain of interest, Dr. Davis’s experience with behavioral theory often leads to collaborations with other scientists applying theory to a variety of health-promoting and health-risk behaviors. Dr. Davis opens the SUMH lab to student involvement in a variety of ways. Interested students should contact him directly via email ( to request a, SUMH lab, student research application.


In the Department of Health, Human Performance and Recreation, Dr. Davis teaches courses within his area of expertise. He teaches courses on health behavior theory, at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, a course on the prevention of drug abuse, as well as, other offerings from time to time. 

Recent research from the SUMH lab:

Davis, R.E., *Doyle, N.A., & Nahar, V.K. (2020). An Investigation of the Associations between Self-stigmatizing Beliefs, Depression, and Suicidal Ideation among Collegiate Drug Users. Journal of Alcohol and Drug Education, 64(1), 52-80..

Patel, F.C., Raines, J.A., Kim, R.W., Gruszynski, K., Davis, R.E., Sharma, M., Patterson, G., Johnson, J.W. & Nahar, V.K. (2020). Veterinarian’s Attitudes and Practices Regarding Opioid-related Vet Shopping in Tri-State Appalachian Counties: An Exploratory Study. BMC Veterinary Research, 16, 210.

Davis, R.E., Bass, M. A., Ford, M. A. & Nahar, V. K. (2020). Screening for Depression among a Sample of US College Students Who Engage in Recreational Prescription Opioid Misuse. Health Promotion Perspectives, 10(1), 59-65.

Davis, R. E., *Doyle, N. A., & Nahar, V. K. (2020). Association between Prescription Opioid Misuse and Dimensions of Suicidality among College Students. Psychiatry Research, 287, 112469.

Nahar, V.K., *Wells, J.K., Davis, R.E., Johnson, E.C., Johnson, J.W., & Sharma, M. (2020) Factors Associated with Initiation and Sustenance of Stress Management Behaviors in Veterinary Students: Testing of the Multi-theory Model (MTM). International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(2), 1-10.

Davis, R.E., Bass, M.A., Ford, M.A., Bentley, J.P., Lee, K., & *Doyle, N.A. (2019) Recreational Prescription Opioid Misuse among College Students in the USA: An Application of the Theory of Planned Behavior. Journal of Health and Social Sciences, 4(3), 389-404.

Nahar, V. K., Davis, R. E., Dunn, C., Layman, B., Johnson, E. C., Dascanio, J. J., Johnson, J. W., & Sharma, M. (2019). The Prevalence and Demographic Correlates of Stress, Anxiety, and Depression among Veterinary Students in the Southeastern United States. Research in Veterinary Science.

*Doyle, N.A., Davis, R.E., Quadri, S.A., Mann, J.R., Sharma, M., Wardrop, R.M., & Nahar, V.K. (under review). The Association Between Emotional Intelligence and Stress, Anxiety and Depression among Medical Students. Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

Nahar, V.K., Davis, R.E., & Sharma, M. (under review). Emotional Intelligence Correlates with Stress, Anxiety, and Depression among Students of Veterinary Medicine.

*indicates student author