School of Public Health
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Ken Ward
Dr. Ken Ward
Kenneth D. Ward, Ph.D.
Director and Professor, Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences
Contact information:
Phone: 901-678-1702
Robison Hall 201
Curriculum Vitae


  • Residency, Clinical Health Psychology, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, University of Memphis
  • M.S., Clinical Psychology, University of Memphis
  • A.B., Psychology, Brown University

Research Interests:

  • Tobacco use epidemiology and intervention
  • Global health
  • Childhood obesity prevention
  • Physical activity, bone health, and osteoporosis prevention

Recent Publications:

  • Bloodworth, R., Ward, K.D., Relyea, G., & Cashion, A. Food availability as a determinant of weight gain among renal transplant recipients. In press, Research In Nursing and Health.
  • Martinasek, M.P., Ward, K.D., & Calvanese, A. Carbon monoxide exposure in waterpipe bar patrons. In press, Nicotine & Tobacco Research.
  • Asfar, T., Al Ali, R., Rastam, S., Maziak, W., & Ward, K.D. (2014).Behavioral cessation treatment of waterpipe smoking: the first pilot randomized controlled trial. Addictive Behaviors, 39, 1066-1074.  
  • Ward, K.D., Asfar, T., Al-Ali, R., Vander Weg, M.W., Eissenberg, T., & Maziak, W. Randomized trial of the effectiveness of combined behavioral/ pharmacological smoking cessation treatment in Syrian primary care clinics. In press, Addiction.
  • Collins, C., Ward, K.D., Mirza, B., Slawson, D.A., McClanahan, B.M., & Vukadinovich, C.M. (2012). Comparison of nutritional intake in U.S. adolescent swimmers and non-athletes. Health, 4, 873-880.doi:10.4236/health.2012.410133.
  • Ward, K.D., Kedia, S., Webb, L., & Relyea, G. Nicotine dependence among clients receiving publicly funded substance abuse treatment. (2012). Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 125, 95-102.
  • Mzayek, F., Khader, Y., Eissenberg, T. Al Ali, R., Ward, K.D., & Maziak, W. Patterns of waterpipe and cigarette smoking initiation in school children: Irbid Longitudinal Smoking Study. (2012). Nicotine & Tobacco Research, 14, 448-454.
  • Mzayek, F., Khader, Y., Eissenberg, T., Ward, K.D., & Maziak, W. (2011). Design, baseline results of Irbid Longitudinal, School-based Smoking Study. American Journal of Health Behavior, 35, 746-755.
  • Asfar, T., Al-Ali, R., Ward, K.D., Vander Weg, M.W., & Maziak, W. (2011). Are primary health care providers prepared to implement an anti-smoking program in Syria?  Patient Education and Counseling, 85, 201-205.
  • Maziak, W., Rastam, S., Shihadeh, A.L., Bazzi, A., Ibrahim, I., Zaatari, G.S., Ward, K.D., & Eissenberg, T. (2011). Nicotine exposure in daily waterpipe smokers and its relation to puff topography. Addictive Behaviors, 36, 397-399.
  • Rastam, S., Maziak, W., al Ali, R., Ward, K.D., & Eissenberg, T. (2011). Comparative analysis of waterpipe and cigarette suppression of abstinence and craving symptoms. Addictive Behaviors, 36, 555-559.
  • Kilzieh, N., Rastam, S., Ward, K.D., & Maziak, W. (2010). Gender, depression, and physical impairment: an epidemiologic perspective from Aleppo, Syria. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 45, 595-602.
  • Cobb, C., Ward, K.D., Maziak, W., Shihadeh, A.L., & Eissenberg, T. (2010). Waterpipe tobacco smoking: an emerging health crisis in the United States. American Journal of Health Behavior, 34, 275-285.
  • Maziak, W., & Ward, K.D. (2009). From health as a rational choice to health as an affordable choice. American Journal of Public Health, 99, 2134-2139.

Courses Taught:

PUBH 7130/8130: Social Determinants of Health (syllabus)
PUBH 7450/8450: Randomized Clinical Trials (syllabus)
PUBH 7992: Master’s Project Seminar
PUBH  8161:  Advanced Psychosocial Theories of Health and Behavior
PUBH 8901: Doctoral Professional Development Seminar (syllabus)

Kenneth D. Ward, PhD is Professor and Director of the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences. He also serves as Adjunct Professor of Preventive Medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and Intervention Director of the Syrian Center for Tobacco Studies. Trained as a clinical health psychologist, Dr.Ward is interested in community-, healthcare system-, and population-level approaches to reducing the burden of tobacco use, other addictive behaviors, and chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. Current research projects include: (1) an“mHealth” child obesity prevention tool that links parents, community organizations, and healthcare providers; (2) a web-based continuing education curriculum to help K-12 teachers incorporate physical activity into their classrooms; (3) effects of sports participation and diet on children’s bone accrual; (4) use of tobacco and other substances in the aftermath of a disaster; (5) physical activity to aid smoking cessation; (6) prevention of post‐cessation weight gain; (7) waterpipe (“hookah”) use both in the U.S. and Middle East; and (8) improving delivery of lung cancer treatment services (with Baptist Cancer Center). Dr. Ward’s research has been funded by more than 35 grants from the National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association, American Legacy Foundation, FedEx Institute of Technology, Tennessee Department of Health, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, and The Urban Child Institute.

Current Professional Service:
Senior Editor, Addiction
Senior Associate Editor, Health Behavior and Policy Review
Editorial Board Member, American Journal of Health Behavior and Journal of Addiction

Sigma Xi and Phi Kappa Phi honor societies
Fellow, American Academy of Health Behavior (elected 2007)
Fellow, Society of Behavioral Medicine (elected 2011)
Faudree Professorship, University of Memphis (2010-2013)
Willard R. Sparks Eminent Faculty Award (2014)



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