Melissa Kimber

  • Assistant Professor, Psychiatry & Behavioural Neurosciences
  • Associate Member, Health Research Methods, Evidence & Impact
  • Member of McMaster Integrative Neuroscience Discovery & Study (MiNDS) Program

Dr. Kimber received her PhD (2015) in Health Research Methodology (Population and Public Health Specialization) from the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, & Impact at McMaster University and recently completed Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care and CIHR-funded postdoctoral fellowships at the Offord Centre for Child Studies under the mentorship of Dr. Harriet MacMillan. Informed by clinical and research training and experience, Dr. Kimber’s program of work examines the independent and intersecting antecedents, correlates, and outcomes of child maltreatment and mental disorders among children and adolescents; with a special interest in eating disorders, emotional abuse, emotional neglect, children’s exposure to intimate partner violence, as well as the implementation and evaluation of preventative interventions. Dr. Kimber is also interested in how the experiences of child maltreatment and mental disorders differ across children and adolescents who identify with various gender identities, as well as the extent to which these experiences differ between Indigenous and non-Indigenous (e.g. 1st generation, 2nd generation, and multi-generation Canadian) children and adolescents. A third and complementary area of focus is supporting health and social service providers to implement evidence-based interventions for child maltreatment, as well as child and adolescent mental disorders in their every-day practice.

Current Activities

  • Medical Education on Family Violence Project - This study is part of a project called VEGA (Violence Evidence Guidance Action), the goal of which is to develop evidence-based guidance and a curriculum to assist health and social service providers in responding to family violence. The primary goal of this project is to inform the VEGA project of the shortcomings, challenges and implementation issues of family violence education in medical schools from the perspective of the medical students
  • 2014 Ontario Child Health Study and School Mental Health Surveys – a large-scale epidemiological study of child and adolescent well-being
  • Youth-DEPth (Youth Disordered Eating Prevention) Project – a pilot project examining the acceptability and feasibility of an emotion processing intervention to reduce the onset of eating disorders among adolescents


  • Kimber, M., & Ferdossifard, A. (2020). Children’s exposure to trafficking, sexual exploitation, and community-based violence in Canada: A Narrative Summary and Policy Perspective. Child Abuse & Neglect. Doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2020.104790
  • Kimber, M., McTavish, J.R., Vanstone, M., Stewart, D., MacMillan, H. L. (2020). Child maltreatment online education for healthcare and social service providers: implications for the COVID-19 context and beyond. Child Abuse & Neglect. Doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2020.104743
  • MacMillan, H., Kimber, M., Stewart, D. (2020). Intimate partner violence: recognizing and responding safely. JAMA, 324(12), 1201-1202. Doi: 10.1001/jama.2020.11322
  • Kimber, M., Gonzalez, A., MacMillan, H.L. (2020). Recognizing and responding to child maltreatment: Strategies to apply when delivering Family-Based Treatment for Eating Disorders. Frontiers in Psychiatry – Psychosomatic Medicine. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2020.00678.
  • Stewart, D. E., MacMillan, H. L., Kimber, M. (2020). Recognizing and Responding to Intimate Partner Violence – An Update (A Position Paper for the Canadian Psychiatric Association’s Standing Committee on Professional Standards and Practice). Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. Doi: 10.1177/0706743720939676
  • Kimber, M., McTavish, J.R., Luo, C., Couturier, J., Dimitropolous, G., MacMillan, H. (2019). Mandatory Reporting of Child Maltreatment when delivering Family-Based Treatment for Eating Disorders: A framework analysis of practitioner experiences. Child Abuse & Neglect. doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2018.11.010 (online first, Nov 23, 2018)
  • Kimber, M., Dimitropoulos, G., Williams, E. P., Sing, M., Loeb. K. L., Hughes, E. K., Garber, A., Elliott, A., Vyver, E., & Le Grange, D. (2018). Tackling mixed messages: Practitioner reflections on working with adolescents with atypical anorexia and their families. Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment and Prevention. doi: 10.1080/10640266.2018.1542888.
  • Couturier, J., Kimber, M., Woodford, T., McVey, G., Findlay, S., Webb, C., Niccols, A., & Lock, J. (2018). Themes Arising During Implementation Consultation with Teams Applying Family-Based Treatment. Journal of Eating Disorders, 6 (32), doi: 10.1186/s40337-018-0218-y
  • McTavish, J. R., Kimber, M., Devries, K., Colombini, M., MacGregor, J.C.D., Wathen, N., MacMillan, H.L. (2019). Children and caregivers’ perspectives about mandatory reporting of child maltreatment: A meta-synthesis of qualitative studies. BMJ Open, 9 (4), 1-9. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2018-025741.
  • Kimber, M., MacMillan, H. (2017). Child psychological abuse. Pediatrics in Review, 38 (10), 4

For further publications click here.

Additional Information



Dr. Melissa Kimber

Contact Melissa


Research Interests

  • Epidemiology and prevention of child maltreatment, its recurrence and negative outcomes
  • Children and adolescents with gender-diverse, migrant and Indigenous backgrounds
  • Epidemiology and prevention of mental illness among children and adolescents
  • Mixed methods research

Education, Memberships & Certifications

  • PhD, McMaster University
  • MSW, York University
  • Grad. Diploma Health Services & Policy Research, York University
  • BSW, McMaster University
  • BA, McMaster University
  • Member, Eating Disorders Research Society
  • Registered Social Worker, OCSWSSW