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Xiaoling Xiang

Associate Professor of Social Work

Xiaoling Xiang

Dr. Xiang’s overall research aims to enhance the health of older adults — a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being. To achieve this goal, she conducts research in two interconnected areas. The first area is fundamental social science research, where she investigates the interplay between physical functioning, mental health and cognition. This aspect of her work often involves the analysis of secondary data, such as the HRS and NHATS, utilizing various statistical methods (e.g., survival analysis, SEM, GLMMs and quasi-experimental methods). In the second area, Xiang conducts applied intervention research, directing her efforts toward developing and implementing digital mental health interventions for home- and community-based settings. A significant aspect of this work involves cultivating community partnerships to ensure the relevance and impact of these interventions. A notable project under this umbrella is Empower@Home, a novel internet-delivered psychotherapy program. This program, designed with user-centered principles, stands out as one of the first explicitly designed for homebound older adults with depression. Additionally, Xiang has developed a keen interest in applying artificial intelligence in social work research. Her published article in the Journal of Gerontology, which utilizes topic modeling and classification techniques, investigates ageism during the COVID-19 pandemic, as reflected in tweets.

Research Interests/Focus

Aging and mental health, late-life depression, chronic disease, comorbidity, digital mental health intervention, implementation research and applied artificial intelligence.


Year Degree   School
2015 PhD Social Work University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
2015 MSW Macro University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
2011 MPhil Social Welfare Chinese University of Hong Kong, CHINA
2009 BA Social Work and Sociology Peking University, Beijing, CHINA

View all publications by Xiaoling Xiang »

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