Penn State Harrisburg

Senel Poyrazli, Ph.D.

· Associate Professor of Counseling Psychology; Behavioral Sciences and Education


Senel Poyrazli received her Ph.D. in counseling psychology from University of Houston and M.Sc. in counseling psychology from Northeastern University - Boston. Her clinical background includes working with adolescents, college students, adults, married/unmarried couples, and war veterans, and dealing with issues primarily related to relationships, psychosocial adjustment, decision making, depression, and trauma. Her research primarily involves college students’ and immigrants’ psychosocial adjustment processes; with cross-cultural competency being an additional research interest. Currently, she is exploring the reasons that cause international students to fail academically. She is also starting a new research project related to immigrant parents and their involvement with their child’s school. Dr. Poyrazli teaches counseling skills, interviewing and counseling, groups counseling, theories of counseling, family therapy, internship, research methods, and multicultural competency. She was awarded a Teaching Excellence Award by Penn State Harrisburg in 2007 and the Faculty Diversity Award in 2010.

Dr. Poyrazli is a fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) and is actively involved within the organization. For APA Division 52 (International Psychology), she served a 5-year term as the editor of the division’s official publication International Psychology Bulletin and chaired the division’s Long-Range Planning Committee. She served as president-elect in 2013, president in 2014, and past-president in 2015. For APA Division 17 (Society of Counseling Psychology), she chaired the International Student Mentoring and Orientation Committee (IMOC) and served for three years as a reviewer for the division's APA conference program. Within Division 1 (General Psychology), Dr. Poyrazli served as an associate editor for the division’s newsletter, The General Psychologist.

Dr. Poyrazli also serves as an editor of the Eurasian Journal of Educational Research and as a consulting editor for Perspectives in International Psychology: Research, Consultation, Practice. Her research has been published in well-known journals such as Journal of College Student Development, Journal of College Counseling, Journal of Humanistic Counseling Education and Development, International Journal of Stress Management, Adolescence, Journal of Counseling and Development, and Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy.

Dr. Poyrazli is also connected well with the immigrant community around Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She served as the vice-president of Pennsylvania Immigrant and Refugee Women's Network (PAIRWN) and organized for three years an annual immigrant women's health conference that is sponsored by PAIRWN, American Cancer Society, Highmark, and Harrisburg Area Community College.

Research Interests

  • Psychological and environmental factors that impact immigrant student achievement
  • Acculturative Stress
  • College Adjustment Process
  • International Students
  • Multicultural Competency

Publications and Research

  • Poyrazli, S., & Thompson, C. E. (Eds). (2013). International case studies in mental health. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
    • [Korean translation (2014) published by Hakjisa Publisher, Seoul, Korea].
  • Sommers-Flanagan, R., Elander, C., Sommers-Flanagan, J., & Poyrazli, S. (2009). Bizi bosamayin: Bosanma surecini yasayan cocuklarin anne-babalara onerileri [Don’t divorce us: Kids’ advice to divorcing parents]. Ankara, Turkey: Ani Publishing (A prominent academic publisher in Turkey).
Peer-Reviewed Research Publications
  • Poyrazli, S., & Isaiah, J. (in progress). International students on academic probation: Lessons learned.  
  • Sedem, M., & Poyrazli, S. (in progress).Cultural and psychological development of immigrant families in western cultures.
  • Eskin, M., Sun, J.-M., Abuidhail, J., Yoshimasu, K., Kujan, O., Janghorbani, M., Flood, C., Carta, M. G., Voracek, M., Mechri, A., Poyrazli, S., Aidoudi, K., Bakhshi, S., Harlak, H., Moro, M. F., Nawafleh, H., Phillips, L., Shaheen, A., Taifour, S., Tran, U., & Tsuno, K. (in press). Suicidal behavior and psychological distress in university students: A 12-nation study. Archives of Suicide Research.
  • Mitchell, M. A., Poyrazli, S., & Broyles, L. M. (in press). Alcohol misuse and cultural adjustment among U.S. college students abroad in Italy. Substance Abuse.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2015). Psychological symptoms and concerns experienced by international students: Outreach implications for counseling centers. Journal of International Students, 5, 306-312.
  • Seitz, C. A., Poyrazli, S., Harrison, M. A., Flickinger, T., & Turkson, M. (2014). Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy for military veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder: A systematic review. The New School Psychology Bulletin, 11 (1), 14-29.
  • Var, S., Poyrazli, S., & Grahame, K. (2013).Personal well-being and overall satisfaction of life of Asian immigrant and refugee women. Journal of Asia Pacific Counseling, 3, 77-90.
  • Shigemoto, Y., & Poyrazli, S. (2013). Factors related to posttraumatic growth in U.S. and Japanese college students. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice and Policy, 5, 128-134.
  • Poyrazli, S., Milliogullari, A., & Yesilyaprak, B. (2012). Predictors of life satisfaction among guidance counselors and administrators employed by the Turkish Ministry of Education. Eurasian Journal of Educational Research, 12(48), 175-192.
  • Duru, E., & Poyrazli, S. (2011). The role of demographics, English language competency, perceived discrimination and social connectedness in predicting level of adjustment difficulties among Turkish international students in the U.S. The International Journal of Psychology, 46, 446-454.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Hand, D. B. (2011). Using drawings as a pedagogical method to facilitate multicultural competency development. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 38, 93-104
  • Poyrazli, S., Thukral, R. K., & Duru, E. (2010) International students’ race-ethnicity, personality, and acculturative stress. International Journal of Psychology and Counseling, 2(2), 25-32.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Sahin, A. E. (2009). Suggestions regarding the process of writing and publishing manuscripts in English for international journals. Education & Science, 34, 117-131.
  • Grahame, K. M., Grahame, P. R., Ferrer-Wreder, L., Coatsworth, D., Meister, D., Poyrazli, S., & Forthun, L. (2008). Left behind?  Charter schooling in a low-income community.  Education and Society, 26, 25-45.
  • Gomleksiz, M., Poyrazli, S., & Vural, R. A. (2008). Discriminatory attitudes: A scale development in Turkish. Psychological Reports, 103, 921-930.
  • Poyrazli, S., Ferrer-Wreder, L., Meister, D. G., Forthun, L., Coatsworth, J.D., & Grahame, K. M. (2008). Academic achievement, employment, age, and gender and students’ experience of alternative school. Adolescence, 43, 547-556.
  • Sumer, S., Poyrazli, S., & Grahame, K. (2008). Predictors of depression and anxiety among international students. Journal of Counseling and Development, 86, 429 - 437.
  • Ferrer-Wreder, L., Palchuk, A., Poyrazli, S., Small, M. L., & Domitrovich, C. E. (2008). Identity and adolescent adjustment. Identity: An International Journal of Theory and Research, 8 (2), 95-105.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Lopez, M. D. (2007). An exploratory study on perceived discrimination and homesickness: A comparison of international students to the U.S. students. The Journal of Psychology, 141, 263-280.
  • Ferrer-Wreder, L., Poyrazli, S., Bedard, B., Coatsworth, J. D., Meister, D., Forthun, L., & Grahame, K. M. (2007). Alternative school students' normative beliefs about aggression. Journal of Educational Alternatives, 3 (2), 66-87.
  • Poyrazli, S. & Grahame, K. (2007).  Barriers to adjustment: Needs of international students within a semi-urban campus community. Journal of Instructional Psychology, 34, 28-45.
  • Duru, E., & Poyrazli, S. (2007). Personality dimensions, psychosocial-demographic variables, and English language competency in predicting level of acculturative stress among Turkish international students in the USA. International Journal of Stress Management, 14, 99-110.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Kavanaugh, P. (2006).  Marital Status, Ethnicity, Academic Achievement, and Adjustment Strains: The Case of Graduate International Students. College Student Journal, 40, 767-780.
  • Connor, J., Poyrazli, S., Ferrer-Wreder, L., Grahame, K. (2004). The relation of age, gender, ethnicity, and risk behaviors to self-esteem among students in nonmainstream schools. Adolescence, 39, 457-473.
  • Poyrazli, S., Kavanaugh, P., Baker, A., & Al-Timimi, N. (2004).  Social support and demographic correlates of acculturative stress in international students, Journal of College Counseling, 7, 73-82.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2003).  Ethnic identity and psychosocial adjustment among international students. Psychological Reports, 92, 512-514. 
  • Poyrazli, S. (2003). Validity of Rogerian therapy in Turkish culture: A cross- cultural perspective. Journal of Humanistic Counseling Education and Development, 42, 107-115. 
  • Poyrazli, S., Arbona, C., Nora, A., McPherson, B., & Pisecco, S. (2002).  Relation between assertiveness, academic self-efficacy, and psychosocial adjustment among international graduate students. Journal of College Student Development, 43, 632-642.
  • Poyrazli, S., Arbona, C., Bullington, R., & Pisecco, S. (2001).  Adjustment issues of Turkish college students in the United States. College Student Journal, 35(1), 52-62.
Contributions to Books – Book Chapters
  • Poyrazli, S., & Balkis, M. (2015).Counseling and psychotherapy in Turkey: Ceren’s Story. In R. Moodley, M. Sookoor, U. Gielen, & R. Wu (Eds).International counseling: Case studies handbook (pp. 267-276). Washington, D.C.: American Counseling Association.
  • Ferrer-Wreder, L., Sugimura, K., Trost, K., Poyrazli, S., Klingstedt, M. L., & Thomas, S. (2014). The intersection of culture, health, and risk behaviors in emerging and young adults. L. A. Jensen (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Human Development and Culture: An Interdisciplinary Perspective. Doi: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199948550.013.31
  • Poyrazli, S., Dogan, S., & Eskin, M. (2013). Counseling and psychotherapy in Turkey: Influence of western theories, unique challenges, and the need to develop culturally-inclusive methods. In R. Moodley, U. Gielen, & R. Wu (Eds), Handbook of counseling and psychotherapy in an international context(pp.404-414). New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Eskin, M. (2013).Bisexual identity in a traditional culture: A case study from Turkey. In S. Poyrazli & C. E. Thompson (Eds.), International case studies in mental health (pp. 69-83).Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
  • Poyrazli, S., & Thompson, C. E. (2013).Towards an inclusive international psychology.In S. Poyrazli & C. E. Thompson (Eds.),International case studies in mental health(pp. 1-11).Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
  • Thompson, C. E., & Poyrazli, S. (2013). What Can We Learn From Mental Health Practitioners Around the World? In S. Poyrazli & C. E. Thompson (Eds.),International case studies in mental health (pp. 225-232).Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2010). Only Rogers, everywhere and all the time? No. In: Trotter-Mathison, M., Koch, J. M., Sanger, S. & Skovholt, T. M. (Eds.) Voices from the field: Defining moments in counselor and therapist development. (pp.77-81). New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2009).Considerations when interviewing immigrants. In John Sommers-Flanagan & Rita Sommers-Flanagan (Eds.), Clinical Interviewing (4th edition, pp. 418-419). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
Editor-Reviewed Articles
  • Kalpaxis, G., & Poyrazli, S. (2012). Interview with Ramadan Ahmed, Ph.D.: A prominent leader in Arab psychology. International Psychology Bulletin, 16 (3), 39-40.
  • Stevens, M. J., Poyrazli, S., &, Takooshian, H. (2009). Are you an international psychologist? Would you like to become one? The General Psychologist, 44 (2), 9-11.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2005). International students at US universities. Eye on Psi Chi, 9 (2), 18-19.
  • Poyrazli, S., Stevens, M. J. (2009). Bridging the research divide between counseling and related fields. Eurasian Journal of Educational Research, 9(36), 1-7.
Other Publications
  • Erskine, J., & Poyrazli, S. (2011). Family influences on the career choices of international undergraduate college students. International Psychology Bulletin, 15(2), 42-45.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2011). Yeni süreli yayınlar: Nasıl oluşturulur ve nasıl başarılı hale getirilir? [New academic journals: How to establish them and make sure of their success], TSE Standard: Ekonomik ve Teknik Dergi, 50, 80-81.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2006). Shake hands with the devil: The journey of Romeo Dellaire. International Psychology Reporter, 10(1), 23-24.
  • Poyrazli, S. (2004).International psychology division of APA (Amerikan Psikoloji Dernegi, Uluslararasi Psikoloji Bolumu).Turkish Psychology Bulletin, 32, 210-211.
  • Poyrazli, S. (September, 2004). Immigrants: Mental health and resources. Our Voice, 2(2), 3.
  • Poyrazli, S. (June, 2004). Turkish culture and suggestions for immigrants. Our Voice, 2(3), 3.