Photo of Rachel Burns

Rachel Burns

Lab Director/ Assistant Professor


Education and Background

Bachelor of Arts & Science (Psychology & Biology), University of Guelph, 2008

PhD, Psychology, University of Minnesota- Twin Cities, 2014

Postdoctoral Fellow, McGill University & Douglas Mental Health University Institute, 2014-2017

Dr. Rachel Burns joined the Department of Psychology as an Assistant Professor in 2017. She received her Bachelor of Arts & Science (Psychology & Biology) in 2008 from the University of Guelph. She then moved to the University of Minnesota where she received her PhD in Psychology (Social) in 2014. She completed her training by pursuing a postdoctoral fellowship in mental health epidemiology at McGill University and the Douglas Mental Health University Institute in Montreal. Dr. Burns’ awards include a CIHR postdoctoral fellowship and being named an American Psychosomatic Society’s Young Investigator Colloquium Scholar. She has collaborated on grants that were approved by CIHR, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, and the Canadian Diabetes Association (now Diabetes Canada). In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, cross country skiing, and traveling.

Dr. Burns’ research interests are in health psychology. Her research examines associations between mental health and physical health outcomes, especially those related to type 2 diabetes, with an eye towards understanding how these processes unfold over time. A related line of research leverages psychological theory to identify the social and cognitive processes that shape health behavior. Dr. Burns employs a variety of methods, including observational studies and secondary data analysis of epidemiological datasets.