Portrait of Ai Bo (asian woman), social work assistant professor

Ai Bo, PhD

  • Assistant Professor, Social Work

Dr. Ai Bo is an assistant professor in the Social Work Department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Dr. Bo's current research focuses on three interrelated areas of intervention research: advancing intervention theories for understanding structural and behavioral determinants of youth substance use and mental health problems; evaluating and synthesizing intervention effects and mechanisms of substance use prevention programs; and enhancing clinical trial design and evaluation methods.

Dr. Bo is a recipient of the GADE 2019 student award for social work research and has published her work in top-tier interdisciplinary journals. She is on the editorial board of Research on Social Work Practice and an early career reviewer for the Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research. Over the years, she has developed strong applied methodological and statistical skills with an expertise in meta-analysis and structural equation modeling.

Dr. Bo was a Kuralt Postdoctoral Scholar for Quantitative Intervention Research at the School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill before joining the Helen Bader School of Social Welfare. She was an adjunct lecturer at NYU where she taught substance abuse courses in the BSW Program and a guest lecturer for MSW research methods courses.


  • Ph.D, New York University, Silver School of Social Work, 2019
  • MSW, University of Southern California, Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, 2014

Professional Interests:

  • Social determinants of health
  • Evidence-based practice for behavioral and mental health problems
  • Adolescent development and substance use prevention
  • Adolescent alcohol use decision making

Recent Publications:

  • Bo, A., Wu, S., Chen, D., Marsiglia, F., Zhu, Y., Zhang, L., & Zhu, B. (2020). Understanding alcohol-specific antecedents among Chinese vocational school adolescents. Addictive Behaviors, 110, 106483doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2020.106483
  • Bo, A., & Jaccard, J. (2020). Parenting as an inhibitor of gender disparities in alcohol use: The case of early adolescents in China. BMC Public Health, 20, 1098. doi:10.1186/s12889-020-09195-2
  • Huang, X., Liu, J., & Bo, A. (2019). Living arrangements and quality of life among older adults in China: Does social cohesion matter? Aging & Mental Health. Advance online publication. doi:10.1080/13607863.2019.1660856
  • Jaccard, J., & Bo, A. (2018). Prevention science and child/youth development: Randomized explanatory trials for integrating theory, method, and analysis in program evaluation. Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research9, 651–687. doi:10.1086/701388
  • Bo, A., Hai, A. H., & Jaccard, J. (2018). Parent-based interventions on adolescent alcohol use outcomes: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Drug and Alcohol Dependence191, 98–109. doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.05.031
  • Chi, X., Bo, A., Zhang, P., Liu, T., & Chi, I. (2018). Effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction on youth depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Frontiers in Psychology9, 1034. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2018.01034
  • Cai, Y., Bo, A., & Hsiao, S. C. (2018). Emerging social work field education trends in China. Journal of Social Work Education54, 324–336. doi:10.1080/10437797.2017.1350233
  • Bo, A., Mao, W., & Lindsey, M. A. (2017). Effects of mind–body interventions on depressive symptoms among older Chinese adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry32, 509–521. doi:10.1002/gps.4688

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