Thomas Blank, PhD

Professor, Human Development & Family Studies (Affiliate)

Research Overview

Dr. Blank’s primary research interests involve the psychological aspects of dealing with cancer, especially prostate cancer, from treatment decision-making to long-term survivorship, focusing on the relationship with adult development, aging, and the life course. He has been the principal investigator on both aging and prostate cancer research from the National Institute on Aging and has collaborated with Crystal Park, Ph.D., on research on younger cancer survivors funded by the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Dr. Blank studies how cancer survivors follow trajectories of change or lack of change from a cancer experience, especially their positive and negative changes. Currently, he is investigating the “age intensification effect,” an effect in which younger cancer survivors are more likely to report greater negative and positive impacts. As an InCHIP PI he and two colleagues have conducted focus groups of middle-aged and older gay men about prostate health and prostate cancer, until their research an unexplored area. With colleagues he is developing research on religion/spirituality and African-American survivors and health behavior change after cancer. Besides his research and publications on these topics, Dr. Blank has served five times as a consumer reviewer for the Department of Defense Prostate Cancer Research Program proposals in biomedical science. He is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America.


Ph.D., Columbia University, 1976 (social psychology)
M.A., Columbia University, 1975 (social psychology)
B.A., Concordia Senior College, 1968 (theology and psychology)

Recent Publications

Contact Information
Mailing AddressDepartment of Human Development and Family Studies
348 Mansfield Road, Unit 2058
(Family Studies Building, FSB)
Storrs, CT 06269-2058