Rebecca J. Graves, Ph.D., NP-C
Director of Special Projects and Evaluation
Office of Research, Development, and Evaluation

Research Interests
  • Nursing college student wellness and obesity prevention
  • Social determinants of health for low-income individuals and families
  • Healthy nutrition, meal planning, and meal preparation interventions for families
  • Prevention of obesity and related chronic disease
  • Health and wellness of vulnerable populations including low-income individuals and families, adults with Down syndrome, and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Health-related quality of life of adults with Down syndrome

  • PhD in Nursing Sciences, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, 2014
  • Post-MSN Adult Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, University of South Alabama, 2009
  • MSN Family Nurse Practitioner, University of South Alabama, 2006
  • BSN, University of South Alabama, 2001
  • BS Journalism, emphasis Public Relations, University of Southern Mississippi, 1996

Selected Publications
  • Graves, R. J., Graff, J. C., Esbensen, A. J., Hathaway, D. K., Wicks, M. N., & Wan, J. Y. (2016). Measuring health-related quality of life of adults with Down syndrome. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 121(4), 312-326. PubMed PMID: 27351699
  • Dearmon, V., Graves, R. J., Hayden, S., Mulekar, M. S., Lawrence, S., Jones, L., Smith, K. K., & Farmer, J. E. (2013). The effectiveness of a simulation-based orientation on knowledge acquisition, anxiety, and self-confidence in baccalaureate nursing students preparing for the first clinical experience. Journal of Nursing Education, 52, 29-38. doi:10.3928/01484834-20121212-02
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Ongoing Research Support
  • University of South Alabama Grant to Enhance Interprofessional Education and/or Research Across the Medical Sciences
  • University of South Alabama interprofessional culinary medicine program
    The goal of this program is to teach health-professions students 1) the prevention and treatment of chronic disease through nutritional interventions, 2) how to educate patients on healthy, economical meal planning and preparation, 3) how to work in interprofessional teams to learn and teach patients.
    Role: PD
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Doctoral Courses
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice Project Planning
  • Evidence-Based Practice and Quality Improvement in Health Care Systems
  • Organizational Systems Analysis, Leadership and Change
  • Program Evaluation and Improvement of Clinical Outcomes Data Management and Decision Making in Complex Health Care Systems
  • Dr. Graves has also worked with students on their Doctor of Nursing Practice Project manuscripts for publication.
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Honors and Awards
  • Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities Traineeship
    Boling Center for Developmental Disabilities
    University of Tennessee Health Science Center
    Memphis, Tennessee