Section Navigation

Laura Smith

Professional Background

Educational Background

1990   Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology

Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia


1988   M.S. in Counseling Psychology

Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia


1983  B.A. in English and Psychology with High Distinction

University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia

Scholarly Interests

Social class


Participatory action research

The development of socially-just community-based practice


Selected Publications


Smith, L. (2010). Psychology, poverty, and the end of social exclusion: Putting our practice to work. New York: Teachers College Press.



Smith, L. (2010). Poverty as Social Exclusion: Relational Dimensions of Social Class Stratification. Hanover, MA:  Microtraining Associates.

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

Underlined names indicate student co-authors.

Smith, L.., Mao, S., & Deshpande, A. (in press). “Talking across worlds”: Classist microaggressions and higher education. Journal of Poverty.


Smith, L., Beck, K., Bernstein, E., & Dashtguard, P. (in press). YPAR and school counseling practice: A school-wide framework for student well-being. Journal of School Counseling.


Goodwin, A.L., Smith, L., Souto-Manning, M., Cheruvu, R., Tan, M. Y., Reed, R., & Taveras, L. (in press). What should teacher educators know and be able to do? Journal of Teacher Education.

Smith, L.  (2013). Social class and social exclusion: So close, and yet so far away. American Journal of  Orthopsychiatry, 83, 11-16.

Smith, L., Baranowski, K., Allen, A., & Bowen, R. (2013).  Poverty, crime seriousness, and the “politics of disgust.” Journal of Poverty, 375-393.

Smith, L., Li, V. , Dykema, S., Hamlet, D., & Shellman, A. (2013).  “Honoring somebody that society doesn’t honor”: therapists working in the context of poverty. In Session: Journal of Clinical  Psychology, 69, 138-151.

Smith, L., Bratini, L., & Appio, L.M. (2012). “Everybody’s teaching and everybody’s learning”: Photovoice and youth counseling. Journal of Counseling and Development, 90, 3-12.

Smith, L. (2012). Counseling and poverty. In (D.W. Sue and D. Sue, Eds.) Counseling the culturally diverse, pp. 517-526. New York: Wiley.

Smith, L., Appio, L., & Chang, J. (2012). Feminist multicultural counseling psychology and poverty.  In (Enns, C. Z. & Williams, E. N., Eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Feminist Multicultural Counseling, pp. 155-168. New York: Oxford Press.

Smith, L. & Mao, S. (2012). Social class and psychology. In (Carter, J., Fouad, N., & Subich, L., Eds.) The  APA Handbook of Counseling Psychology. Washington, DC: APA.

Smith, L., Mao, S., Perkins, S., & Ampuero, M. (2011). The relationship of clients’ social class to early therapeutic  impressions. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 24, 15-27.

Smith, L. &  Redington, R. M. (2010). Lessons from the experiences of White antiracist activists. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice,  41, 541–549.

Smith, L., Davis, K., & Bhowmik, M. (2010). Youth participatory action research groups as school counseling  interventions. Professional School Counseling, 14, 174-182.

Smith, L., Rosenzweig, L., &  Schmidt, M. (2010). Best practices in the reporting of PAR: Embracing both the  forest and the trees. The Counseling Psychologist, 38, 1115-1138.

Smith, L., Bratini, L., Chambers, D., Jensen, R., & Romero, L. (2010). Between idealism and reality:  Meeting the challenges of participatory action research. Action Research, 8, 407-425.

Smith, L. & Romero, L. (2010). Psychological interventions in the context of poverty: Participatory action research as practice. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 80, 12–25.

Smith, L., Allen, A., & Bowen, R. (2010). Expecting the worst: Exploring the associations between poverty and misbehavior. Journal of Poverty, 14, 33 – 54.

Smith, L. (2009). Enhancing training and practice in the context of poverty. Training and Education in Professional Psychology, 3, 84-93.

Smith, L., Chambers, D. A., & Bratini, L. (2009). When oppression is the pathogen: The participatory development of socially-just mental health practice. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 79, 159-168.

Smith, L. (2008). Positioning classism within psychology’s social justice agenda. The Counseling Psychologist, 36, 895-924.

Smith, L. (2005).  Psychotherapy, classism, and the poor:  Conspicuous by their absence. American Psychologist, 60(7), 687-696.


CCPJ 4165: Consultation in community agencies and resources

Community services and programs in family and personal counseling, health and child care, mental health, career counseling, job placement, and service to the aged.

CCPJ 5025: Group Counseling

Prerequisite: Admission into the Ed.M. program in Psychological Counseling or Ph.D. program in Counseling Psychology; CCPJ 4064, CCPJ 5371. Students will explore the functions of group counseling in meeting client needs. Emphasis will be placed on theory and principles of group process and on the development of group skills through participation in class role-plays and in a group counseling experience. Attention to the practice of effective group leadership will also be addressed.

CCPJ 5165: Racial-cultural counseling laboratory

Permission and application required. Prerequisites: Admission into the Ed.M. program in Psychological Counseling or Ph.D. program in Counseling Psychology; CCPJ 4064, CCPJ 5371, CCPJ 5025, and either CCPJ 5020 or CCPJ 5164. An advanced experiential skill-oriented and didactic course with limited enrollment (30) intended to provide insights into the racial, social, and cultural factors in the development of relationships in counseling. The course uses a minimum competence model focused on self-exploration and the use of counseling skills.

CCPJ 6360: Practice in Psychologcal Counseling

Required: permission of the instructor. For advanced doctoral candidates in counseling psychology. Course involves a weekly seminar, client assignments with individual supervision, and exposure to a range of theoretical approaches to the clinical/counseling interview. Stu-dents register for 4 points each term.

Laura Smith appeared in the following articles:

First Edition: Putting Poverty on the Table (12/16/2011)

Seven Alumni Honored at 2011 Academic Festival (5/4/2011)

Winter Reading (12/17/2010)

Giving Youth a Voice (5/30/2010)

TC Faculty Question Education Secretary's Vision (1/11/2010)

New Faces (4/2/2008)