People » Melanie Sberna Hinojosa

Melanie Sberna Hinojosa ‘s research interests center on the role of social institutions in shaping individual behavior. Her substantive areas of research interest are in the sociology of medicine, health, families, caregiving, racial and ethnic disparities in health, child health, mental health, educational outcomes, community based participatory research, long term care issues, and quantitative methods.

She obtained her Master’s degree in Applied Sociology here at the University of Central Florida (1999) before going on to the University of Illinois at Chicago where she received her PhD (2005). As part of a post-doctoral fellowship, Dr. Hinojosa also obtained a Master’s degree in epidemiology (2009) at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Most recently, she worked at the University of Florida at the Institute for Child Health Policy where she examined disparities in the health outcomes of children with mental health disorders.

Dr. Hinojosa’s current work focuses on a) examining the relationship between adverse childhood events (abuse, neglect, divorce, drug use) and the health outcomes of children; b) exploring the school-related outcomes (attendance, engagement, grade retention) of white, black and Latino children with special health care needs; and c) exploring how family members negotiate the caregiving role when providing care to people with mental and physical health disorders.

Research Interest: 

Families and Health
Health Disparities
Race & Ethnicity
Child Health
Health Outcomes
Health Policy as it relates to Health Outcomes
Mental Health
Behavioral Health
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
Parental Strain/Family Stress as it relates to Child Health
Family Caregiving
Caregiver Strain
Long Term Care
Community Based Participatory Research

Fall 2018

SYD 4020.0W59 – Birth, Death & Population Trend – Online Course

SYO 4400H.0201 – Honors Medical Sociology – T, R 1:30 – 2:45 – Main Campus



Fall 2018

T, R 11:00 – 1:00

UCF Sociologists Encourage Social Activism

Melanie Sberna Hinojosa, Ph.D., and Ramon Hinojosa, Ph.D, assistant professors in the Department of Sociology, were selected to give a presentation on the role of civic engagement in undergraduate leadership. T... Read more

Examining Veterans’ Musculoskeletal Health

Two researchers in the Department of Sociology at the University of Central Florida recently had their paper accepted to the peer-reviewed open access journal Public Library of Science (PLOS ONE). Assistant ... Read more

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