Joseph C. Viola

Professor of Professional Psycology
139 Old Main

Employment/private practice/past positions held outside of GW:

Prior to coming to GW, Dr. Viola worked in several large community mental centers in Boston, MA. These clinics afforded him the opportunity to spend several years working in a cognitive-behavioral program at the Bedford, MA VA, Boston Public Schools, and a large non-profit agency dedicated to the treatment of Autism (and other spectrum disorders). Immediately before moving to Washington, DC, his work was increasingly school-based, focused on both psychotherapy and assessment in schools, and working part-time in an outpatient clinic (focused predominantly on CBT and DBT). He also spent several years teaching in local universities in the Boston area and immersing himself in training programs (creating two externship programs at the May Institute Inc., volunteer supervising, etc.) His move to Washington, DC was centered on the decision to work full time in a school. As such, Dr. Viola is currently the Psychologist at St. Albans school in Washington, DC. Shortly thereafter Dr. Viola began volunteering my time supervising GW students, he picked up a class or two to teach (adjunct: both at GW and at Trinity University), and jumped at the opportunity to join the faculty when a position became available. His career up to this point has very much been about schools and the teaching/training of clinical psychology. Dr. Viola also has a small private practice in northwest DC.

Favorite Superhero: Batman, obviously

Current Research

Dr. Viola's research interests include spatial development in children (including the development of creativity, perspective taking, and related cognitive processes), addiction and motivational interviewing, outcome research in cognitive therapy, and the evolution of social media. Clinically, he works most often with children and adolescents in both psychotherapy and assessment though he also see many patients struggling with addiction (substance and non-substance based). More generally though, his graduate training was based in clinical-developmental psychology and he has since come to embrace the practice of both psychodynamic and nonpsychodynamic traditions in psychotherapy. Dr. Viola values and champions integration across disciplines and see psychodynamic theory as being the most valuable foundation one can have as an access point to other therapeutic modalities.


B.A., Georgetown University
M.A., Suffolk University
Ph.D, Suffolk University in Boston

Office Hours

T: 4:00 PM-5:00 PM
F: 2:00 PM-3:00 PM

Classes Taught

  • Child and Adolescent Psychopathology
  • Cognitive Bases of Clinical Psychology
  • Evidenced-Based Practice in Clinical Psychology
  • Psychological Assessment