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Sterling M. McPherson

Associate Professor, Director and Assistant Dean for Research, Washington State University

Dr. McPherson is Director for Biostatistics and Clinical Trial Design at the Washington State University Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine and the Assistant Dean for Research. He is also Executive Faculty at the Program of Excellence in Addictions Research (PEAR). Within PEAR, he is the Head and Principal Investigator of the Analytics and Psychopharmacology Laboratory (APPL). He has secured more than $35 million in grants and contracts as PI or Co-I from NIH (eight different institutes/centers) and 14 other agencies and is involved in multiple research projects ranging from basic human toxicology to health economics. He has led several treatment and treatment development focused projects and has significant clinical research experience having successfully recruited participants with alcohol, drug and tobacco use disorders. He has been part of 20 randomized controlled trials in the last nine years and was competitively chosen to become an NIH Fellow of the Summer Institute on Behavioral Randomized Clinical Trials. He is also the Site PI for the Pacific Northwest Node of the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network grant and he is a Co-Principal Investigator for an NIH P20 Center of Excellence focused on addiction treatment among rural American Indians. He has published over 100 peer-reviewed research articles in these domains and is a grant reviewer for the NIH and five other sponsors. He has reviewed for more than 25 journals and is on the Editorial Board of Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology, the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, and Addiction. Recently, he has partnered with four different industry sponsors to pursue novel alcohol and drug use treatment technology. Lastly, he is dedicated to international research with active collaborations across seven different countries.


  • –present
    Associate Professor, Director and Assistant Dean for Research, Washington State University


  • 2010 
    Washington State University, PhD - Experimental Psychology (plus Advanced Quantitative Methods track)