78611 Faculty Detail -Gina Mercer: Phoenix - Argosy University
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  • Arizona School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University

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Gina Mercer

Associate professor




  • Houston Veterans' Affairs Medical Center. Postdoctoral Fellowship in Geropsychology. 1997
  • Ph.D. Counseling Psychology. University of Houston, Department of Educational Psychology. 1996
  • M.S. Family Studies. University of Tennessee, Department of Child & Family Studies. 1989


Dr. Gina Touch Mercer completed her PhD in Counseling Psychology at the University of Houston in 1996. Her clinical and research interests include assessment and treatment of dementia, anxiety and eating disorders, prevention and early intervention in clinical disorders, health and family issues, bereavement, creativity, music and the arts in therapy, and development of personal and family strengths. Dr. Mercer is an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology at the American School of Professional Psychology (ASPP) at Argosy University, Phoenix. She teaches courses in Family & Couples Theory and Therapy, Geropsychology, Cognitive Assessment and Personality Assessment, and all levels of practicum training. She provides mentoring and supervision of research and clinical work with doctoral students and prepares them for competency exams and professional practice with a variety of clients. She leads 37-week practicum seminars focusing on professional development, self-assessment of strengths and training goals, ethical assessment and treatment of clients, development of diagnostic skills, and development of "bedside manner" in sharing professional opinions and diagnoses. Dr. Mercer has over 15 years of psychotherapy, assessment and consultation experience. She maintains a private practice where she conducts individual and family therapy, personality assessment, forensic assessment of guardianship for vulnerable older adults, and family enhancement workshops. She was formerly a Psychologist and Clinical Director of Geriatrics at the St. Louis Behavioral Medicine Institute, and Director of Behavioral Health in an interdisciplinary health practice in Nashua, New Hampshire. Dr. Mercer has presented nationally and internationally on such topics as dementia, eating disorders, and positive psychology. She was invited to Romania to present a 4-day training conference on family and couples therapy. She has made numerous contributions to the specialties of assessment and aging as a consultant, editor, and reviewer. Most recently, she co-authored an instructor's manual to accompany the Sattler & Ryan (2009) textbook Cognitive Assessment with the WAIS-IV. Dr. Mercer is professionally affiliated with the Gerontological Society of America, the American Society on Aging, and the National Council on Family Relations.


  • Geropsychology/Dementia
  • Family Systems
  • Positive Psychology

Selected Publications

  • Sattler, J., Ryan, J. & Mercer, G.T. (2009) Instructor's Manual to accompany Cognitive Assessment with the WAIS-IV by Sattler, J. and Ryan, J. (2009). Made significant editorial contributions to, reviewed, and proofread the textbook; created Powerpoint slides and devised teaching strategies for the fourth edition of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale.
  • Book review of "Awakening to Aging", co-edited by Myrtle Heery and Gregg Richardson, 2009. University of the Rockies Press. Published in the Journal of Transpersonal Psychology
  • Travis, L. and Mercer, G.T. in Lewis, D., Wechsler, F., Sideman, L., & Clemente, L. (Eds.). (2007) Chapter on Laws and statutes concerning older adults. The Arizona psychologist's sourcebook: State specific practice issues.
  • Schneider, J. K., Mercer, G. T., Herning, M., Smith, C. A., & Prysak, M. Using a Cognitive Behavioral Intervention to Promote Exercise Behavior in Older Adults. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 30.
  • Touch Mercer, G., Molinari, V., Kunik, M., Orengo, C.; Snow, L. & Rezebak, P. (1999). Rehospitalization of older psychiatric inpatients: An investigation of predictors. The Gerontologist, 39, 591-598.


  • Gerontological Society of America (GSA). 1997, 2004-2007
  • American Society on Aging (ASA). 1997-1999
  • American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT). 1993-1995
  • American Psychological Association (APA). 1986-2003, 2007-2008


  • Mercer, G.T., Molinari, V., Pinnell, C., Sadek, R, Amin, K., Wright, K., & Virden, T. (2010). A proposed model of Alzheimer's dementia and PTSD: Pathophysiological processes in coping with negative affect. Presented at the International Alzheimer's Association Conference, Honolulu, Hawaii.
  • 7/07 Touch Mercer, G., Pinnell, C., Swartout, I. and Toma, J. Presented four- day intensive training on Family and Couples' Theory and Therapy at Casa de la Culture in Romania.
  • 7/98 Touch Mercer, G., Molinari, V., Kunik, M., Orengo, C.; Snow, L., Rezebak, P. (1998). Rehospitalization of older psychiatric inpatients: An investigation of predictors. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, San Francisco, California.
  • 4/97 Touch, G. (1997). Counseling the Elders: Group therapy for aging couples. Houston Psychological Association, Houston, TX.
  • 11/95 Touch, G. (1995). Measuring TRIO success. Presented at annual meeting of the Southwest Association of Student Assistance Programs, El Paso, Texas.

Selected Lectures

  • Hospice Volunteer staff (Oct. 2009). Using Positive Psychology in Caregiving.