Robert B. Noll, PhD

  • Professor of Pediatrics

Subsequent to receiving a bachelor’s degree with honors in business administration from Ohio University, Noll served 5 years in the US Navy as a naval aviator where he was awarded 2 Distinguished Flying Crosses, 5 Individual Air Medals, and 5 Navy Commendation Medals. After discharge, he returned to college first to obtain a psychology major at the University of California at Berkeley where he was Phi Beta Kappa, and then he received a PhD from Michigan State University in clinical child psychology.  

Since earning his PhD in 1983, Noll’s research has focused on gaining a better understanding of the impact of medical challenges for children, caregivers, and siblings, with a heavy emphasis on pediatric cancers. The fundamental premise for this body of work has been two-fold.  First, to identify specific domains of functional vulnerability so that clinical trials could be initiated with a specific target; and second, to utilize medical trauma/challenges in children as a metaphor to better understand the psychological impact of stressful life events on the functioning of children and families. He has published 150+ peer-reviewed papers in scientific journals.  While much of his work has been descriptive, Noll has been involved in 5 different multi-site randomized clinical trials of behavioral interventions involving pediatric cancers as a site Principal Investigator. Over 3 large multi-site randomized clinical trials with over 1400 caregivers of children with cancer, his research group has demonstrated that a behavioral intervention, Bright IDEAS Problem-Solving Skills Training could be provided and that it was effective at alleviating caregiver suffering. He is now working to translate and disseminate Bright IDEAS to caregivers of children with sickle cell disease, autism spectrum disorder, and children requiring inpatient pediatric rehabilitation. 

Along with this academic focus, he has been extremely involved in the mentoring of junior faculty and fellows.  He has been the primary or co-primary mentor for 12 career development awards, and 4 of his previous fellows currently have NIH funding.  He was a medical director for behavioral health and clinical director of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Fragile X center.  

NolI also served 10 years as the chair of the Behavioral Science Committee within the Children’s Oncology Group, and currently serves on the behavioral science, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and cancer control steering committees.  

Professional and Scientific Society Memberships

  • American Psychological Society - Fellow, 2001-Present
  • Children’s Oncology Group, 2000-Present
  • American Society of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, 1996-Present
  • Ohio Psychological Association, 1990-2003
  • Society of Psychologists in Addictive Behavior, 1987-1992
  • Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, 1986-Present
  • Association for the Advancement of Psychology, 1985-Present
  • American Orthopsychiatric Association Inc - Fellow, 1985-Present
  • Research Society on Alcoholism, 1984-1992
  • Children’s Cancer Group, 1982-2000
  • International Neuropsychological Society, 1981-Present
  • American Psychological Association, 1980-2000
  • Society for Research in Child Development, 1980-Present

Education & Training

  • BBA, Economics, magna cum laude, Ohio University, 1969
  • PhD, Clinical Child Psychology, Michigan State University, 1983
  • MA, Clinical Child Psychology, Michigan State University, 1980

Selected Publications

Devine KA, Willard VW, Hocking MC, Stapleton JL, Rotter D, Bukowski WM, Noll RB. PROMIS Peer Relationships Short-Form: How well does self-report correlate with data from peers? J Pediatr Psychol, 43(9), 1059-1067, 2018. DOI: 10.1093/jpepsy/jsy038.

Hardy KK, Gioia A, Kairalla JA, Winick N, Noll RB, Patel S, Sands S, Embry LM. Executive functioning in children and adolescents treated for high-risk acute lymphoblastic leukemia (HR-ALL): A report from the Children's Oncology Group (COG). Pediatr Blood Cancer, 65: S35-S36, 2018.

Saoji N, Baran J, Gerhardt CA, Vannatta K, Rotter D, Trauth JM, Noll RB. The psychometrics of the Children’s Depression Inventory when used with children who are chronically ill and matched community comparison peers. J Psychoeducational Assess, 37(5): 566-577, 2019.  DOI:10.1177/0734282918774963

Michel HK, Noll RB, Siripong N, Kim SC, Lipstein EA.  Shared decision making about starting anti-TNF’s: A pediatric perspective.  J Pediatr Gastr Nutr, 68: 339-342, 2019.

Nugent BD, Davis PJ, Noll RB, Tersak JM.  Sedation practices in pediatric ALL patients.  J Clin Oncol, 37, 2019 (suppl; abstr e21500).

D’Souza AM, Devine KA, Reiter-Purtill J, Gerhardt CA, Vannatta K, Noll RB.  Internalizing symptoms in AYA survivors of childhood cancer and matched controls. Psycho-Oncol, 28, 2009-2016, 2019.https://doi.org/10.1002/pon.5183. 

Seelisch J, Sung L, Kelly MJ, Raybin JL, Beauchemin M, Dvorak CC, Kelly KP, Nieder ML, Noll RB, Thackray J, Ullrich NJ, Dupuis LL, Robinson PD.  Identifying clinical practice guidelines for the supportive care of children with cancer.  A report from the Children’s Oncology Group.  Pediatr Blood Cancer, 2019; 66:e27471.https://doi.org/10.1002/pbc.27471

Nugent BD, Davis PJ, Noll RB, Tersak JM.  Sedation practices in pediatric patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Pediatr Blood Cancer, 2019. DOI: 10.1002/pbc.28037

Hocking MC, Noll RB, Kazak AE, Brodsky C, Phillips P, Barakat, LP. Friendships in pediatric brain tumor survivors and non-central nervous system survivors.  J Pediatr Psychol, 2020, in press. 

Phipps S, Fairclough DL, Noll RB, Devine KA, Dolgin MJ, Schepers SA, Askins MA, Schneider N, Ingman K, Voll M, Katz ER, McLaughlin J, Sahler OJZ. In-person vs. web-based administration of a problem-solving skills intervention for parents of children with cancer: Report of a randomized non-inferiority trial. EClinicalMedicine, Published by THE LANCET, in press.

Jacola LM, Baran J, Noll RB, Willard V, Hardy KK, Embry L, Hullman SE, Larsen EC, Winick N, Kairalla, JA.  Adaptive functioning and academic achievement in survivors of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia: A report from the Children’s Oncology Group.  Submitted for publication.  

Full Publication List via NIH PubMed »