Professor and the Louis and Ann Wolens Centennial Chair in Gerontology
Dr. Namkee Choi is a professor and the Louis and Ann Wolens Centennial Chair in Gerontology in the School of Social Work at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Choi’s current research focuses on depression in late life and the development and evaluation of effective psychosocial interventions for depressive symptoms among both community-dwelling and institutionalized older adults. One of her recent research projects, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, St. David’s Foundation, and Mitte Foundation, has tested the feasibility and effectiveness of delivering problem-solving therapy (PST) for homebound older adults via home-based, low-cost videoconferencing methods. This project (tele-PST) has been evaluated very successful in terms of its potential for both clinical and cost effectiveness. Dr. Choi continues to evaluate and disseminate tele-PST and integration of mental health services and technology in aging service agencies that serve low-income older adults. Her other areas of research include disparities in health status and healthcare utilization, program evaluation, minority aging, and social policy for the aging population. Dr. Choi teaches research methods and social work practice with older adults at the graduate level.
Dr. Choi serves on the editorial board the Journal of Gerontological Social Work and Journal of Poverty and as an expert reviewer for several professional journals in gerontology, mental health, and social work. She has published extensively in gerontology and mental health journals. Dr. Choi is active as a national research mentor for the Hartford Social Work Faculty Scholars Program.
Dr. Choi is originally from Korea where she had her master’s degree in social work and worked at the Planned Parenthood of Korea and was a part-time lecturer for undergraduate social work students. Since she came to the United States in 1981, Dr. Choi received her MSW degree from the University of Minnesota and Ph.D. in Social Welfare from the University of California at Berkeley. While she was at UC Berkeley, Dr. Choi worked for the Mental Health Research Group as a research assistant. Dr. Choi also received training in geriatric mental health research as one of the competitively selected scholars of the Advanced Research Institute in Geriatric Mental Health funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. Dr. Choi’s social work practice experience in the United States has included advocacy for and direct work with long-term care residents and homebound older adults. In her spare time, she volunteers for the Meals on Wheels and More program in Austin.
Curriculum Vitae (PDF)
Geriatric Mental Health; Depression Treatment in Aging Services; Social Policy for older persons (Social Security and Supplemental Security Income); Program evaluation.
- Ph.D., University of California at Berkeley
- M.S.W., University of Minnesota
- M.A., Ewha Women's University, Seoul, Korea
- An Exploratory Study of Activity/ Program Needs and Preferences Among Racial/Ethnic Minority Senior Center Participants: Association with Actual and Felt Ages (2014)
- Better Way to Live at Home: Program Evaluation of the Effect of Supportive Services on the Well-being of Older Residents (2011)
- Problem-Solving Therapy for Depressed Homebound Older Adults (2013)
- Telehealth Problemsolving Treatment of Homebound Older Adults (2013)
- Telehealth Problem-Solving Treatment for Mild-to-Moderate Depressive Symptoms in Homebound Older Adults (2011)
- Understanding Long-term Care Planning Behavior of Baby-Boom Aged Adults: Hartford Fellowship in Geriatric Social Work (2010)
- Feasibility Study of Short-Term Depression Treatment for Homebound Older Adults (2009)
- Autonomy in the Face of Depression in Nursing Homes: What Do Nursing Home Residents and Staff Have to Say about the Residents' Depression and Intervention Needs? (2007)
- Mental Health Needs of Low-Income Older Texans: A Pilot Study of Assessment of Depressive Symtomatology and Preferred Treatments (2006)
- Adult Protective Services Client Assessment and Risk Evaluation Form Validation Study (2006)
- Assessment of Depression Needs of Low-Income Older Adults: Informal Caregivers' and Social Service Providers' Perspectives (2005)
- Practitioners’ Perspectives on Retention Problems among Geriatric Mental Health Clients (2004)
Social Work BuildingRoom:3.122D
Mailing AddressThe University of Texas
School of Social Work
1925 San Jacinto Blvd D3500
Austin, TX 78712-0358