NASA-Johnson Space Center Study


Stress- and anxiety-related problems are some of the most common and costly behavioral health problems in society. For those working in operational environments (i.e., astronauts, flight controllers, military), stress- and anxiety-related problems before, during, or after missions can seriously compromise efficiency, safety, and performance. To address behavioral health issues like stress, it is important to maximize the privacy, validity, and acceptability of the program used.

SMART-OP (Stress Management and Resilience Training for Optimal Performance) is a six-session evidence-based (i.e., cognitive behavioral therapy) program that is brief (30-45 min each) and private (can be used in office or home settings). SMART-OP includes education about stress and interactive training exercises that teach users to monitor stress, regulate emotions, relax, think flexibly, be realistic, and take effective action to deal with stressors. The content of the program can be modified to target different populations who work in challenging and stressful environments (e.g., astronauts, military, flight controllers) and could be disseminated widely via computer, Internet, tablet, or smart phone device.

The current project will evaluate SMART-OP in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) with a sample of flight controllers at NASA-Johnson Space Center (JSC).

Principal Investigator