Dr. Kevin Montes

College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences

Department of Psychology

Associate Professor

(310) 243-2299




Ph.D.University of North Dakota2013
M.AUniversity of North Dakoka2011
B.ACalifornia State University, Dominguez Hills 2008



My research involves investigating correlates and consequences of substance use (e.g., alcohol, marijuana, tobacco use) as well as behavioral addictions such as gambling. To support one component of my research program, I secured funding from the National Institutes of Health (~$866,000) to examine alcohol recovery identity as a mechanism of behavior change in alcohol recovery. Related to this program of research, I have developed measures to assess recovery identity (e.g., explicit measures as well an implicit association test of alcohol recovery) via the collection of data from heavy drinkers as well as from individuals seeking treatment for an alcohol use disorder.

My research has also focused on investigating moderation as a viable treatment goal in substance use recovery. In addition, I am also interested in exploring the viability of targeting individuals’ treatment seeking self-efficacy as a mechanism to reduce the treatment gap and increase treatment seeking for a substance use disorder. I am also a site investigator on two large multi-site studies that seek to elucidate predictors and mechanisms of college student substance use. For students who are interested in analyzing data and writing up research findings in my lab, I have access to many secondary datasets that can be used to examine the constructs below:
  1. Substance use (alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, gambling)
  2. Drinking identity and alcohol recovery identity (explicit/implicit measures)
  3. Protective behavioral strategies (alcohol and marijuana)
  4. Drinking motives
  5. Outcome expectancies
  6. Norms (e.g., descriptive and injunctive norms)
  7. Health disparities related to substance use


  1. Dr. Montes' Google Scholar Page: Google Scholar
  2. Dr. Montes' ResearchGate Page: ResearchGate



Are you interested in joining the Psychology of Addiction Lab (PAL)? Please fill out the PAL Application by clicking the link below. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis




Montes, K. S. & Pearson, M. R. (2021). I am what I am: A meta-analysis of the association between substance user identities and substance use-related outcomes. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 35(3), 231-246.

Montes, K. S., Richards, D. K., Pearson, M. R., & Marijuana Outcomes Study Team (2021). A novel approach to assess descriptive and injunctive norms for college student marijuana use. Addictive Behaviors, 117.

Montes, K. S., Dela Cruz, M.*, Weinstein, A. P., Pearson, M. R., Lindgren, K. P., Neighbors, C., & Marijuana Outcomes Study Team (2021). Alcohol and marijuana protective behavior strategies mediate the relationship between substance use identity and use-related outcomes: A multi-sample examination. Addictive Behaviors (112).

Witkiewitz, K., Wilson, A. D., Roos, C. R., Swan, J. E., Votaw, V. R., Stein, E. R., Pearson, M. R., Edwards, K. A., Tonigan, J. S., Hallgren, K. A., Montes, K. S., Maisto, S. A., & Tucker, J. A. (2020). Can individuals with alcohol use disorder sustain non-abstinent recovery? Non-abstinent outcomes 10 years after alcohol use disorder treatment. Journal of Addiction Medicine.

Witkiewitz, K., Montes, K. S., Schwebel, F. J., & Tucker, J. A. (2020). What is recovery? A narrative review of definitions of recovery from alcohol use disorder. Alcohol Research: Current Reviews.



PSY 415: Advanced Research Methods in Cognitive Psychology
PSY 416: Research Seminar in Cognitive Psychology