Associate Research Director, Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders
UNC Hospitals – Chapel Hill
Education and Training:
B.S., Psychology, Michigan State University
M.S., Clinical Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University
Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University
Clinical Internship, Minneapolis Veteran’s Hospital
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Dr. Baker is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Associate Research Director of the Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders in the Department of Psychiatry. She provides treatment for and conducts research on eating disorders. Broadly, her research focuses on the biological and genetic vulnerability for eating disorders, with a specific interest in how these factors may change across the lifespan or differ between the sexes. Her current projects involve defining biological (e.g., ovarian hormones) and genetic (e.g., gene expression) markers of eating disorder risk and treatment outcome and how these markers may interact with psychological factors, such as reward processing and anxiety. Ultimately, these findings would be translated to improve and individualize treatment programs and predict treatment outcome. Secondly, Dr. Baker’s research has focused on the comorbidity between eating disorders and substance use disorders, exploring the genetic overlap between the two. As part of her work, Dr. Baker is specifically interested in college student mental health and examining how the transition to college may increase risk for disordered eating, substance use, or both.
As a licensed clinical psychologist, Dr. Baker also provides treatment for eating disorders. Her expertise is in cognitive behavior therapy for eating disorders and anxiety disorders. She conducts outpatient individual and group therapy, primarily working with adults and college students seeking care. She additionally has clinical expertise and interest in conducting psychological and diagnostic evaluations and assessments.