Skip to Main Content
Dean Beth Angell, PhD

Beth Angell, Ph.D.

Dean and professor


Phone: (804) 828-1036


  • Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • M.S.S.W., University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • B.A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Dr. Beth Angell is dean and professor at the VCU School of Social Work. Prior to assuming the deanship in 2018, Dean Angell served as a faculty member at the Rutgers University School of Social Work (2008-2018) and the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (2000-2008), and she completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania School of Policy and Practice from 1999-2000.

Dean Angell’s research focuses on behavioral health, particularly on serious mental illness and its intersection with substance abuse and criminal justice involvement. Some of the topics of her research studies have related to treatment seeking, treatment engagement and adherence; consumer-provider interactions and relationships; sources and consequences of stigma; and mandated or involuntary treatment.

Her projects have been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the NARSAD Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Mandated Community Treatment, the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, and the Chicago Community Trust.

Dean Angell was inducted as a Fellow in the Society for Social Work and Research (2018 class) and recently served on a consensus study for the National Academies of Engineering, Science, and Medicine, entitled the Committee on the Science of Changing Behavioral Health Norms.

  • 2018 Fellow, Society for Social Work and Research
  • 2016 Council on Social Work Education Summer Leadership Scholarship Program Award
  • 2014-2016 Appointed Member, Standing Committee on Changing Behavioral Health Social Norms, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
  • 2012 Society for Social Work and Research Fellow, Roundtable on Science and Social Work, Bainbridge Island, WA
  • 2001-2003 Young Investigator Award, NARSAD Foundation
  • 1994-1997 National Institute of Mental Health National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Training Fellowship
  • 1991-1993 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Clinical Traineeship in Severe Mental Illness, University of Wisconsin

Grants, contracts and fellowships

2014-2018 Co-Investigator
Improving Patient Safety in Nursing Home Dementia Care, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality R18HS023464 (Stephen Crystal, PI)

2014-2017 Principal Investigator
Evaluation of Involuntary Outpatient Commitment in New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Department of Human Services, State of New Jersey

2012-2015 Co-Investigator
Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Department of Human Services, State of New Jersey (Allison Zippay, PI)

2009-2014 Principal Investigator
Subaward, Illinois Institute of Technology/National Institute of Mental Health Developing Center for Intervention and Services Research (DCISR) P20MH085981 (Patrick Corrigan PI)

Selected publications

Bolden, G., Angell, B., & Hepburn, A. (2019). How clients solicit medication changes in psychiatry. Sociology of Health and Illness, 41, 411-426.

Barrenger, S.L.*, Draine, J., Angell, B., & Herman, D. (2017). Reincarceration risk among men with mental illnesses leaving prison: A risk environment analysis. Community Mental Health Journal, 53(8), 883-892.

Mikesell, L., Bolden, G.B., Mandelbaum, J., Robinson, J.D., Romaniuk, T., Bolaños-Carpio, A., Searles, D., Wei, W., DiDomenico, S., & Angell, B. (2017). At the intersection of epistemics and action: Responding with I know. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 50(3), 268-285.

Bolden, G., & Angell, B. (2017). The organization of the treatment recommendation phase in routine psychiatric visits. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 50(2), 151-170

Kelly, B.L., Barrenger, S.L.*, Watson, A.C., & Angell, B. (2017). Forensic assertive community treatment: Recidivism, rehospitalization, and the role of housing and support. Social Work in Mental Health, 15(5), 567-587.

Angell, B. (2016). Clinician attitudes, experiences, and use of coercion. In Andrew Molodynski, Jorun Rugkåsa, and Tom Burns (Eds.), Coercion in Community Mental Health Care: International Perspectives. Oxford University Press.

Angell, B., & Bolden, G. (2016). Team work in action: Building grounds for psychiatric medication decisions in Assertive Community Treatment. In M. O’Reilly & J. Lester (Eds.), The Palgrave Handbook of Adult Mental Health.

Angell, B., Matthews, E., Stanhope, V., & Rowe, M. (2015). Shared decision making. In P. Corrigan (ed.), Person-Centered Care for Mental Illness: The Evolution of Adherence and Self-Determination for People with Mental Illness. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. Barrenger, S., Kriegel, L., Angell, B., & Draine, J. (2015). Role of context, resources, and target population in the fidelity of Critical Time Intervention. Psychiatric Services, 67(1), 115-118.

Strong, J.*, Findley, P., McMahon, S., & Angell, B. (2015). What is war?: Female veterans’ experiences of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. Affilia, 30 (4), 489-503.

Angell, B., & Bolden, G. (2015). Justifying medication decisions in mental health care: Psychiatrists’ accounts for treatment recommendations. Social Science and Medicine, 138, 44-56.

Angell, B., Matthews, E.B., Barrenger, S., Watson, A.C., & Draine, J. (2014). Engagement in model programs for community reentry from prison for persons with serious mental illness. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 37, 490-500.

Watson, A.C., & Angell, B. (2013). The role of stigma and uncertainty in moderating the effect of procedural justice on cooperation and resistance in police encounters with persons with mental illnesses. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 19(1), 30-39.

  • Member, VCU Health Equity Steering Committee, 2019-present
  • Member, VCU Advance-IT Steering Committee, 2019-present
  • Member, Smart Decarceration Grand Challenge Practice Working Group, 2018-present
  • Chair, Search Committee for Executive Director, online@VCU, 2019
  • Member, Strategic Priorities Planning Committee, VCU Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation, 2019
  • Editorial Board, Social Work in Mental Health


Want to learn more about the program and application process? Get in touch with the form below.

Please enter your first name.
Please enter your last name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Please enter a valid phone number (numbers only).
Please enter a valid postal code.
Bachelor’s degree is required to attend.
By providing my information and clicking the “Submit” button, I consent to be contacted via telephone (including a cell phone, if provided), email, and text message.

Thank you!

A program representative will be reaching out to you shortly.