Directory Profile

Sandra M Branson

Sandra M Branson, PhD, RN

Assistant Professor
Nursing Systems

View Curriculum Vitae

Dr. “Sandy” Branson’s program of research explores the area of human-animal Interaction, with a specific emphasis on the biobehavioral factors that influence health outcomes in pet owners and the biobehavioral effects of animal-assisted activities. She specifically examines how human-animal interactions (e.g. companion pet ownership and animal-assisted activities) are related to/affect psychological responses, biological responses, behaviours, and health outcomes in a variety of populations. She is particularly interested in how attachment to pets and attitudes towards pets impact these biobehavioral effects and how the quality of human-animal interactions impacts outcomes. She is interested in collaborating with multidisciplinary researchers who are interested in animal-assisted activities and pet ownership and their effects on biobehavioral responses and health outcomes in a wide variety of populations.

Branson teaches a variety of leadership/management courses and is a community clinical instructor in the undergraduate and RN-to-BSN online programs. 

She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Houston and her BSN from Texas Woman’s University. She received her Master’s degree in Leadership and Administration and a post-Master’s certificate in Education from UTHealth School of Nursing. In 2013, Branson received her doctoral degree from UTHealth School of Nursing as the Hamill Foundation Scholar in the Accelerated PhD Program. 

Related News Items

Branson and co-authors publish study in Journal of Pediatric Nursing (Aug 2017)

TNA District 9 Foundation honors Branson and Otto at Nov. 10 “Nursing Celebration” dinner (Oct 2016)

Nursing Systems faculty members co-author in Journal of Nursing Education and Practice (Dec 2015)

Boss and Branson selected for NYU College of Nursing summer institute (Jun 2015)

Grant will support Branson’s pilot study of therapy dogs in ICU settings (May 2015)

Branson, Boss, Kang and Cron take blue ribbon for podium abstract at Research Day 2015 (Mar 2015)

Branson and Boss awarded $45,000 ISAZ Waltham grant for companion-animal study (Jul 2014)