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Kibler Professor of Sport Psychology
Contact Info
Curriculum Vitae

  • Ph.D. University of North Texas
  • M.A. University of Arizona
  • B.A. University of Arizona
Professional Experience
  • Certified Mental Performance Consultant® (administered by the Association for Applied Sport Psychology)
  • Member U.S. Olympic Committee Sport Psychology Registry
  • Licensed clinical psychologist, Commonwealth of Virginia
  • Licensed psychologist (inactive) in Arizona

Dr. Bob Harmison is the Kibler Professor of Sport Psychology in the Department of Graduate Psychology, the Director of Sport Psychology for JMU Athletics, and the Director of the Challace J. McMillin Center for Sport Psychology at JMU. In these roles he teaches courses and conducts scholarship in applied sport psychology, oversees and provides sport psychology services to JMU athletes and coaches, and directs educational sport psychology outreach programming to the athletic community in the surrounding region.

Dr. Harmison has been providing sport psychology consultation services to high school through elite level athletes and teams since 1993, including the 2002, 2006, and 2010 U.S. Olympic Snowboard teams. He was a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee sport psychology staff from 1997-1999, provided consultation within the Kansas City Royals minor league organization in 2004, and has worked with athletes and teams at four NCAA Division I universities.

Scholarly Interests / Research Topics

Mental toughness, peak performance, performance enhancement in sport, characteristics of effective sport psychology consultants, and sport psychology consultation-seeking behavior.

Selected Publications

Vealey, R.S., Galli, N., & Harmison, R.J. (in press). CMPC® certification as a milestone, not a millstone: A response to Scherzer and Reel. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology.

Beck, N., Petrie, T.A., Harmison, R.J., & Moore, W. (2017). Parent, coach, and peer created motivational climates: Relationships to goal orientations and mental toughness. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 48, 185-205.

Tonn, E., Gunter, K., & Harmison, B. (2016). Initial experiences in practica: Foundations, experiential learning, and insights. In M.W. Aoyagi, A. Poczwardowski, & J.L. Shapiro (Eds.), The peer guide to applied sport psychology for consultants in training (pp. 94-108). Taylor & Francis.

Petrie, T.A., Deiters, J., & Harmison, R. J. (2014). Mental toughness, social support, and athletic identity: Moderators of the life stress–injury relationship in collegiate football players. Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology, 3, 13-27. doi: 10.1037/a0032698

Harmison, R.J., & Casto, K. (2012). Optimal performance: Elite level performance in “the zone.” In S. Murphy (Ed.), The Oxford handbook of sport and performance psychology (pp. 707-724). New York: Oxford University Press.

Petrie, T. A., & Harmison, R.J. (2012).  Sport psychology. In E. Altmaier & J. I. Hanson (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of counseling psychology (pp. 780-806).  New York: Oxford University Press.

Harmison, R.J. (2011). A social-cognitive framework for understanding and developing mental toughness in sport. In D.F. Gucciardi & S. Gordon (Eds.), Mental toughness in sport: Developments in theory and research (pp. 47-68). London: Routledge.

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