Carol Mertens is the Research Coordinator for Lane Strathearn in the Attachment and Neurodevelopment Laboratory in the Center for Disabilities and Development at the University of Iowa. She has many years of research and teaching experience at the University of Iowa, including the departments/colleges of Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Radiology, Public Health, Education, and Home Economics (Liberal Arts).
She holds a B.S.E. in Elementary Education from Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State) and was an elementary teacher prior to having children. After having children, she became very interested in families and parenting and earned her Master’s degree in Family Science from the University of Iowa in 1989. In 2000, Carol earned her doctorate in Education (Marriage and Family Therapy major) which included an internship with Dr. Scott Stuart in the department of Psychiatry at the University of Iowa.
After her internship, she was hired by Dr. Stuart and worked 12 more years as his research coordinator. This opportunity included conducting all the pilot psychotherapy for an NIMH grant application investigating Interpersonal Psychotherapy for depression during pregnancy. Currently, Dr. Mertens is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the State of Iowa.
Dr. Mertens’ entire academic career has focused on children and/or families. She has taught parenting and family related courses at the University of Iowa for more than 25 years. Since 1990, she has been designated as a Certified Family Life Educator by the National Council on Family Relations.