Prof. Saralyn Ruff

Saralyn Ruff

Assistant Professor

Full-Time Faculty

(415) 422-4376 Kalmanovitz Hall G43


Professor Ruff received a Master in Education, a Master in Couples and Family Therapy, and a doctorate in Human Development and Family Studies. She worked in Solano County at a nonprofit clinic as a Program Supervisor and Lead Clinician serving at-risk youth, and at A Home Within as Program Director. She maintains a small private practice, focused on the treatment of adolescents and maltreated youth. 

Saralyn’s research agenda is largely rooted in her clinical experiences, focused on mental health interventions for maltreated youth. She is the Director of the Foster Care Research Group (FCRG), a lab examining best practices supporting the wellbeing of current and former foster youth. She teaches courses on general psychology, abnormal psychology, child development, child maltreatment, psychology practicum, and advanced research methods.

Director, Foster Care Research Group
Director of Research, A Home Within
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Adjunct Faculty Mentor, University of San Francisco Psychology Department
MEd, Counseling, Family and Human Services, University of Oregon
MEd, Couples and Family Therapy, University of Oregon
PhD, Human Development and Family Studies, Purdue University
Mental health interventions
Child maltreatment
Sibling relationship quality
Selected Publications

Ruff, S. C., Heineman, T. V. & Clausen, J. M. (Under contract). Treating the trauma of ambiguous loss. New York, NY: Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Company.

Ruff, S. C., Aguilar, R., & Clausen, J. M. (In Press). An exploratory study of mental health interventions with infants and young children in foster care. Journal of Family Social Work

Heineman, T. V., Clausen, J. M., & Ruff, S. C. (Eds.). (2013). Relationship-Based Therapy: Treating traumatized children and youth: Stories from A Home Within. Lanham, Maryland: Jason Aronson Publishing.