M. Kati Lear, Ph.D.

Dr. Lear is an associate investigator in the Portland Psychotherapy Research Lab. Her research interests include examining the roles played by chronic shame, self-criticism, and social exclusion in perceptions of belonging, social functioning, and psychological well-being. She is also passionate about psychotherapy process research and the development of contextual behavioral interventions aimed to enhance self-compassion, psychological flexibility, and social connectedness, including Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Psychedelic Assisted Therapy. She currently serves as a project manager on the Social Anxiety and MDMA-Assisted Therapy Investigation Trial (SAMATI) and works independently and collaboratively on other ongoing lab projects

Dr. Lear also serves as the continuing education director at Portland Psychotherapy Training, provides clinical supervision to doctoral students in psychology, and co-facilitates workshops related to ACT and working with self-criticism and shame in psychotherapy. 

Education and Training 

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical Research & Treatment 

Portland Psychotherapy, Clinic, Research & Training Center (2019 – 2020) 

Ph.D. Clinical Psychology, University of Wyoming (2019) 

M.S. Psychology, University of Wyoming (2014) 

B.A. Psychology, DePauw University (2013) 

Selected Publications 

Lear, M. K., Lee, E. B., Smith, S. M., & Luoma, J. B. (2022). A systematic review of self-report measures of generalized shame. Journal of Clinical Psychology. doi: 10.1002/jclp.23311 

Luoma, J. B., & Lear, M. K. (2021). MDMA-Assisted psychotherapy as a means to alter affective, cognitive, behavioral, and neurological systems underlying social dysfunction in social anxiety disorder. Frontiers in Psychiatry. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2021.733893 

Luoma, J. B., Shahar, B., Lear, M. K., Pilecki, B., & Wagner, A. (2021). Potential processes of change in MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for social anxiety disorder: Enhanced memory reconsolidation, self-transcendence, and enhanced therapeutic relationships. Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental. 

Lear, M. K., Luoma, J. B., & Chwyl, C. (2021). Psychological inflexibility prospectively predicts client non-disclosure in outpatient psychotherapy. Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science, 19, 26-41. Doi: 10.1016/j.jcbs.2020.11.004 

Lear, M. K., Penzenik, M., Forster, J. E., & Starosta, A., Brenner, L., & Nazem, S. (2021). Characteristics of non-suicidal self-injury among veterans. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 77, 286-297. doi: 10.1002/jclp.23027 

Lear, M. K., Luoma, J. B., Chwyl, C. (2020). The influence of self-criticism and relationship closeness on peer-reported relationship satisfaction. Personality and Individual Differences, 163, 110087. doi: 10.1016/j.paid.2020.110087 

Lear, M. K., Wilkowski, B. M., & Pepper, C. M. (2019). The defective self model of self-injury: A daily diary investigation among college students with recent self-injury. Behavior Therapy, 50, 1002-1012. doi: 10.1016/j.beth.2019.03.005 

For a complete list of my publications and to access publication pre-prints, visit my ResearchGate Profile 

Selected Workshops and Presentations 

Research Presentations 

Lear, M. K., & Luoma, J. B. (2020, July). Experiential avoidance and shame as predictors of client non-disclosure in outpatient psychotherapy. In M. K. Lear (chair), Therapeutic processes of change: How do psychological flexibility variables relate to important treatment outcomes. Symposium presented at the 18th annual world conference for the Association for Contextual and Behavioral Sciences, virtual. 

Lear, M. K., & Pepper, C.M. (2019, April). The association between characteristics of NSSI urge and behavior: A daily diary study of frequency, intensity, and duration. In M. Baer & T. Spitzen, Repeated Measures Designs in Risk for Self-injurious Thoughts and Behaviors. Panel presented at the 52nd annual meeting of the American Association of Suicidology, Denver, CO. 

Lear, M. K., & Pepper, C. M. (2018, April). Daily emotion in non-suicidal self-injury. Paper presented at the 51st annual meeting of the American Association of Suicidology, Washington, D.C. 

Lear, M. K., Bachtelle, S. E., & Pepper C. M. (2015, November). Self-concept clarity and emotion dysregulation in non-suicidal self-injury. In S. E. Bachtelle & M. K. Lear (co-chair), Non-suicidal Self-Injury and the Self: Exploring the Relationships among NSSI, Body Factors, and Identity. Symposium presented at the 49th annual meeting of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, Chicago, IL.  

Clinical Workshops Presented 

Pilecki, B. & Lear, M. K. (2021, December). De-mystifying self-as-context: practical strategies for clients. Workshop hosted by Portland Psychotherapy Clinic, Research, & Training Center. 

Luoma, J. B., & Lear, M. K. (2020, July). Working with overcontrolled and rigid behavior in clients: Insights from affective science and radically open dialectal behavior therapy. Workshop presented at the 18th annual world conference for the Association for Contextual and Behavioral Sciences, virtual. 

What Makes Us Unique

Portland Psychotherapy is a clinic, research & training center with a unique business model that funds scientific research. This results in a team of therapists who are exceptionally well-trained and knowledgeable about their areas of specialty.