The UNC CFAR Social and Behavioral Science Research Core seeks to facilitate and support new collaborative HIV-related research that is interdisciplinary and inter-institutional. We provide: Social and Behavioral Science Core logo

-Services and resources to support biomedical and social science researchers interested in exploring social, psychological, and structural factors affecting the HIV epidemic; and

-Scientific leadership, mentorship, and networking opportunities to junior faculty, international investigators, and scholars new to HIV research or from traditionally minority institutions.

Examples of services and support include assistance in the planning, development, and study design of research projects; survey development and programming; and data collection and analysis.

We also provide training in Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Interviewing, and data collection methods. Additional information is available on our Services tab.

Resources include our open source training materials; and the Social and Behavioral Instruments (SABI) database, an online, searchable, user-friendly database that enables researchers to search for instruments and scales to measure constructs relevant to social and behavioral HIV research. Additional information is available on our Resources tab.

The Core regularly hosts networking events and maintains a directory of social and behavioral researchers at UNC, FHI 360, and RTI International to promote networking and new collaborations in HIV research. Please see the Events tab or contact Breana Castonguay, Core Manager, for more information.

This Core Supports the UNC CFAR Office of Bioethics


For more information about the Social and Behavioral Sciences Research Core, contact the Core Manager, Breana Castonguay via email or at (919) 843-2532.

Carol E Golin, M.D.

Core Director

Dr. Carol Golin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education in the UNC School of Public Health and the Division of General Medicine and Epidemiology in UNC Department of Medicine. Dr. Golin is an experienced health services and behavioral researcher. She has been Principal Investigator and co-investigator of numerous federally funded studies of antiretroviral (ART) adherence and HIV prevention, including trials of the SAFETALK, STAR, and PACT interventions as well as the ADEPT cohort and the HIV Costs and Services Utilization Study (HCSUS). Dr. Golin has expertise in developing theory-based health behavior interventions, particularly incorporating Motivational Interviewing, and in conducting formative research to inform behavioral intervention development. She has been actively involved in developing and testing new ways to measure ART adherence.

725 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
CB# 7590 Chapel Hill, NC
Fax: 919-966-3811
Office Phone: 919-966-7939

William Zule, Dr.P.H.

Core Associate Director

William ZuleDr. William Zule is a Senior Health Research Analyst and Senior Fellow at RTI. He has been conducting ethnographic, epidemiologic, and prevention intervention research related to HIV among people who use injected or non-injected drugs since 1989. As a leading expert in these fields, he has been a Principal Investigator, Project Director, and ethnographer on multiple largescale HIV epidemiologic projects, such as his current project- Pilot Test of an Intervention to Change Syringes Used by Injecting Drug Users. He has extensive experience in substance abuse research, developing and integrating biomedical and behavioral interventions, and translating research into practice through implementation studies. In addition to his research, Dr. Zule also serves on the board of directors of the North Carolina Harm Reduction Association.

3040 East Cornwallis Rd. P.O. Box 12194
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194
Office Phone: 919-485-2797

Breana J. Uhrig Castonguay, M.P.H

Core Manager

Breana CastonguayBreana Castonguay is the Social and Behavioral Sciences Research Core Manager and oversees the day-to-day functioning of the Core. She provides consultations to HIV investigators on intervention design, survey development and programming, personalized retention strategies, and qualitative data collection methods. She brings extensive field experience particularly in correctional health where she was Clinical Field Supervisor for CARE+ Corrections, an RCT focused on understanding better strategies for HIV-infected returning citizens for medication adherence and HIV care. Her passion for public health and HIV/AIDS began as a community organizer and continued while completing her MPH at GWU where she won Best Thesis for her project, “A Formative Needs Assessment of Routine HIV Testing in Corrections.”

313 Rosenau Hall CB# 7440
Chapel Hill, NC
Phone: 919-843-2532
Fax: 919-966-2921


Randall Teal, M.A.

Qualitative Research/Health Behavior Intervention Development Specialist CHAI Core Liaison

Randall Teal Mr. Teal is a Qualitative Researcher, possessing a high-level knowledge of qualitative research methods; extensive experience managing and conducting health research projects; extensive experience organizing and conducting interview and focus group research; strong qualitative analytic understanding; and clear and effective communication skills in writing and presenting qualitative findings. In addition, Mr. Teal acts as a liaison between Core G and CHAI Core, a NIH-funded core facility at UNC, that offers state-of-the-art resources and techniques to the development of high-quality and rigorously-evaluated behavioral science interventions aimed at health promotion and disease prevention in populations at risk.

1700 MLK Jr. Blvd., Room 103 CB# 7294
Phone: 919-843-7830

David Rosen, M.D., Ph.D.

Epidemiology and Prison Database Project Specialist

David Rosen Dr. David Rosen is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases in the UNC School of Medicine. Much of Dr. Rosen’s research focuses on the intersection between incarceration and public health. Substantively, his research includes broad assessments of disease prevalence and use of healthcare and mortality among prison-involved populations. He has also conducted several studies examining the use of health services among HIV-infected prisoners and released prisoners. Methodologically, most of Dr. Rosen’s research utilizes the linkage and analysis of large administrative databases to address questions of public health significance for correctional populations and the communities to which they return.

130 Mason Farm Road CB #7030
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
Phone: 919-962-0752

Seth Noar, Ph.D.

Health Communication Specialist

Seth Noar, Ph.D.

Dr. Seth M. Noar is a Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the UNC – Chapel Hill. His work addresses health communication – specifically health behavior theories, message design and mass media campaigns, and eHealth applications. Dr. Noar has been an Investigator on several NIH-funded studies testing health communication strategies for health promotion and disease prevention, with a significant focus on both HIV and cancer prevention. In 2014, Dr. Noar was recognized by Thomson Reuters as among the top 1% most cited researchers in the social sciences.

382 Carroll Hall
Phone: 919-962-4075

Steve Bradley-Bull, M.A., M.Ed.

Motivational Interviewing Specialist

Steve Bradley-Bull, MA, MEdSteve Bradley-Bull has expertise in developing health behavior interventions, primarily focused on the use of Motivational Interviewing. He has conducted numerous MI sessions (including with incarcerated individuals living with HIV and who were about to be released), trained practitioners in how to conduct MI sessions, developed MI training curricula, created intervention materials for MI sessions, designed process evaluation instruments, and completed MITI coding. Steve holds a Masters of Education in Counseling and is a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT).


130 Mason Farm Road CB #7030
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
Phone: 919-812-9203

Stuart Rennie, Ph.D., M.A.

Biomedical Ethics Specialist

Stuart Rennie, PhD, MADr. Stuart Rennie is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Medicine and Core Faculty in the UNC Bioethics Centre. He helps run two NIH-funded bioethics training programs in Cape Town (South Africa) and Kinshasa (DR Congo), and has written extensively about the ethical issues in HIV research, treatment, prevention, surveillance and cure, mostly focused on low-income settings in Southern Africa.


333D MacNider Hall


Wendi Seiler

Administrative Assistant

As the Administrative Assistant for Core G, Wendi provides administrative support to ensure efficient operation of the Core.  She supports both the Manager and Director in relation to organization and communication.  She brings over 10 years of experience to CFAR in this support role.




Bianka Reese, Ph.D., MSPH

Graduate Research Assistant: Qualitative Support


Dr. Bianka Reese is a research assistant with the Social and Behavioral CFAR core. She supports CFAR researchers on qualitative data collection and analysis, as well as report generation. Dr. Reese earned her doctorate in Maternal and Child Health at the Gillings School of Global Public Health where her research focused on the implications of positive youth development for holistic sexual and reproductive health in young adulthood. She is currently an Evaluation Specialist at SHIFT NC (Sexual Health Initiatives For Teens), a non-profit in Durham, NC.


Christine Schalkoff

Graduate Research Assistant


Christine Schalkoff is a Health Behavior PhD student and research assistant in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She is also the project coordinator for an NIH opioid treatment service delivery grant in rural Ohio, which includes a focus on understanding risk for HIV and hepatitis C transmission among injection drug users and increasing harm reduction measures. Christine assists with systematic review planning, data extraction, and manuscript preparation for the Social and Behavioral Science Research Core. Her research interests include substance use and treatment services in rural populations.


Thi Vu

Graduate Research Assistant

Thi Vu is currently an MPH candidate in the Department of Health Behavior at Gillings School of Global Public Health. As a Graduate Research Assistant with the Social and Behavioral Science Core, she has been active in systematic reviews, networking events, SABI updates, and qualitative data analysis. Outside of the research core, she has also worked with UNC’s Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases on the SearcHIV project, looking at community engagement mechanisms in HIV clinical research.


Deshira Wallace

Graduate Research Assistant

Deshira Wallace is a doctoral candidate in UNC’s Department of Health Behavior and graduate research assistant supporting two CFAR projects: updating the Social and Behavioral Instruments (SABI) database and contributing to the development of the implementation of an HIV medication adherence measure as part of clinic care. Her work is focused on exploring how psychosocial stress affect chronic disease prevention and management behaviors for vulnerable populations.



Anwesha Nandi

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Anwesha Nandi is an undergraduate student double majoring in Public Policy and Sociology with a minor in Urban Studies. She will be graduating in Spring 2020 from UNC-Chapel Hill. She supports the Social and Behavioral Science core with the NIH Progress Report and is responsible for core mailing announcements. Outside of the core, she also works with NC TraCS with the engagement of community stakeholders in research.




Noah Mancuso

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Noah Mancuso is a Research Assistant with the Social and Behavioral Research Core, where he assists with updates to the SABI Online Database and with domain systematic reviews. Noah will be graduating in spring of 2019 with a double major in Chemistry from UNC and in Global Health from Duke University. Outside of the Social and Behavioral Research Core, he has research experience working with the HIV/STD Laboratory Core of the UNC Center for AIDS Research. Noah is also currently gaining epidemiological research on breast cancer in the Troester Lab at the Gillings School of Global Public Health.




-Motivational Interviewing: a person-centered counseling style for addressing the common problem of ambivalence about change. For more information about MI and the services we offer, check out our MI Menu and MI Blog.

-Cognitive Interviewing: a strategy used to pre-test questionnaires and surveys to ensure that items are understood by respondents as intended by the developers.

-Quantitative and qualitative data collection methods, including survey administration, semi-structured interviewing, and focus group moderation

Research proposals/planning

-Grant proposal review and development, including guidance on study design

-Development of analysis plans

-Preliminary data analysis

-Letters of support

Intervention Development and Evaluation

We provide support for the development of:

-Theoretical models

-Intervention protocols, content, and materials

-Process evaluations

Data collection and analysis

We provide support for qualitative research, including:

-Focus group and interview guide development

-Support for data collection

-Data coding and analysis

For additional information about our services related to qualitative research, please see our menu. We also provide support for quantitative research, including:

-Questionnaire design, survey development, and scale development

-Qualtrics programming

-Assistance with database creation

-Support for data collection

Manuscript preparation

-Reviews, edits, and feedback on manuscript drafts

-Assistance selecting target academic journals (see Journal Selection Database under Resources tab)

-Assistance with manuscript formatting

-Guidance for submission to academic journals

Mentoring and Networking

We provide mentorship for new CFAR members, junior and minority investigators, and investigators new to HIV social and behavioral research. We facilitate inter-institutional and inter-departmental collaboration in HIV social and behavioral research, particularly through:

-Biannual networking events

-A resource directory of social and behavioral HIV researchers

-Assistance with topical working groups

-Regular networking events

Criminal Justice Related Support

-Consultation regarding recruitment and retention of incarcerated populations

-Access to large, administrative databases to answer research questions related to criminal justice and HIV

For more information about services or to request a service, please use the red service request button at the top of this website.   *Please note: Most of these services do not carry a charge for an initial 1-2 hour consultation. Subsequent fees, or percent effort, are determined from the estimated scope of work.  

Examples of Past Projects

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events at this time.

Past Events

Fall Networking Event

Friday, Nov. 2, 2018, 9:45 – 11:15 a.m., Bioinformatics 1131
The Social and Behavioral Science Core is hosting Seth M. Noar, PhD, a professor in the UNC School of Media and Journalism and a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. His work addresses health behavior theories, message design and mass media campaigns, and eHealth applications. Dr. Noar has published more than 175 articles and chapters in a wide range of outlets in the social, behavioral, health, and communication sciences, and he serves on the editorial boards of several leading communication journals. Dr. Noar has been an investigator on several NIH-funded studies testing health communication strategies for health promotion and disease prevention. He is the co-editor of two books, most recently “eHealth Applications: Promising Strategies for Behavior Change,” published by Routledge. Dr. Noar was recognized by Thomson Reuters and Clarivate Analytics as being in the top 1% most cited researchers in the social sciences in 2014 and again in 2018. In 2016, Dr. Noar received the Lewis Donohew and National Communication Association outstanding health communication scholar awards, and in 2017 he received the American Public Health Association’s Mayhew Derryberry Research award.

**If you missed this event, watch the recording here**

Spring 2015 Networking Event: “The Science of Community Engagement: Part I”Presentation from Spring 2015 Networking Event

Tuesday, May 3, 2016, 11:30am-1:00pm; Pagano Conference Room, Lineberger Cancer Center The SBSRC hosts a networking event each semester, usually geared around a theme to provide a forum for multidisciplinary researchers to meet and network with each other. At the Spring 2015 Networking Event, participants learned more about how community engagement can create increased support and collaboration for clinical and public health research. This event covered how to implement essential community engagement principles at various stages of research by providing successful research study examples.

Dr. Christopher Hurt, Dr. Allison Mathews, Caressa White, and Dr. Carol Golin spoke about essential community engagement principals and illustrated evidence-based practices for initiating community engagement at various stages in the research process. The CFAR SBSRC seeks to stimulate and promote new research and support ongoing collaborative HIV-related social and behavioral research at UNC, FHI, RTI, and other related institutions.

“Motivational Interviewing for Public Health Professionals: A Person-Centered Approach to Achieve Healthier Outcomes”Screen Shot 2016-04-10 at 3.42.20 PM

February 17, 2016, 1:00-2:30pm; Virtual During the presentation, participants learn the fundamentals of Motivational Interviewing and how to apply it in a variety of public health settings. This webinar was hosted by the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE) featuring presenters from the Social and Behavioral Science Core.

Fall 2015 Networking Event: “Building and Sustaining Partnerships between Researchers and Community Based Organizations (CBOs)”

Invitation to Networking EventNovember 19, 2015, 12-1:30pm; Room 508, Koury School of Dentistry  At this lunch-and-learn event, guest speakers Dr. Geni Eng, Dr. Jennifer Schaal, and Ms. Neda Pedilla provided strategies for engaging community partners to strengthen research and improve the health of populations most at need using the “Greensboro Health Disparities Collaborative” as an example of a successful researcher-CBO partnership. People talking at networking event

Spring 2015 Networking Event: “Meet the Core”

May 1, 2015, 12-1:30pm; Pagano Conference Room, Lineberger Cancer Center This event provided an opportunity for researchers from UNC, RTI, FHI 360, and other institutions to learn more about the services that our core offers and to meet and mingle with colleagues!

Charlotte AHEC 2-Day Motivational Interviewing Workshop

Motivational Interviewing and Medication Adherence: A Person-Centered Approach to Achieve Healthier Outcomes March 10-11, 2015; Charlotte AHEC This two-day workshop focused on learning the fundamentals of Motivational Interviewing and how to apply it specifically to medication adherence in a variety of settings and with diverse individuals. Instructors: Dr. Carol Golin, Dr. Kemi Amola, and Steve Bradley-Bull

i-Engage Motivational Interviewing Booster Training

February 5-6, 2015; University of Alabama at Birmingham This two-day training for iEngage clinicians from 4 sites across the United States featured a review of motivational interviewing skills and discussions about the successes and challenges of MI in practice. Using skill building exercises, videos, demonstrations, role plays, and discussions, the clinicians left with a better understanding of MI and how to more effectively conduct MI sessions with their clients.

CFAR World AIDS Day 2014

The Social and Behavioral Science Core, in partnership with the Criminal Justice WorkingGroup, organized and presented an afternoon session on “HIV and Criminal Justice: Thinking Inside and Outside the Box.” Dr. Robert Fullilove discussed the interconnected epidemics of HIV and mass incarceration and the potential of people considered “the problem” to, in fact, be an underutilized, inspiring solution; Dr. Becky White introduced the nature of HIV and the North Carolina prison system; and Dr. Carol Golin spoke about the research history of the Criminal Justice Working Group. This was followed by a moderated discussion among stakeholders including representatives from the state prison system, jail system, academia, mental health advocacy, and harm reduction advocacy sector. Watch the session here.

More Past Events


Please listen to our most recent webinar on the Introduction to the Social and Behavioral Instruments (SABI) Database: A One Stop Shop for Valid and Reliable HIV Measures to learn more about how the SABI database was created and to see a live demo on how to use SABI.

Past Webinars

Fundamentals of Motivational Interviewing – click here for the slides about Motivational Interviewing and how to apply it in a variety of public health settings.


The Social and Behavioral Sciences Core holds regular trainings for research professionals. Please access our open source training materials here.


The Social and Behavioral Instruments (SABI) Database is a user-friendly database of instruments (also called measures or scales) measuring social and behavioral constructs relevant to HIV research that researchers can use to find and compare measures.  The database presents a comprehensive list of instruments have been used to measure certain domains in HIV research.  To use the SABI database, please visit our website.


This database includes information about the journals most frequently publishing UNC CFAR-assisted articles. This information can be used to 1) assist researchers in selecting a target journal for their manuscripts, and 2) provide researchers with an overview of journal submission requirements. Data include a description of the journal, impact factor, acceptance rate, length limitations, costs associated with submission and publishing, details about formatting requirements, and supplementary materials required for submission. In addition to the Journal Selection Database available here, the CFAR Social and Behavioral Sciences Core also offers in-person consultation services to supplement online resources. If you are interested in additional guidance regarding journal selection, please request this service here.