Dr. Michele Kerulis, Online Faculty

Dr. Michele Kerulis is a professor of counseling with Counseling@Northwestern She is certified through the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, a member of the United States Olympic Committee Sport Psychology Registry, and a content expert in counseling ethics and sport and exercise psychology. She is a Past President of Illinois Counseling Association and holds leadership within the American Counseling Association. 

Dr. Kerulis is an active public speaker, private practice clinical therapist, and blogger for Counseling@Northwestern, American Counseling Association, Association for Applied Sport Psychology, and Psychology Today. Her work with the Counseling@Northwestern blog was recognized as one of the Top Counseling Blogs of 2017.

Dr. Kerulis has received recognition for her work including Illinois Mental Health Counseling Association Distinguished Service Award and Illinois Counselor Educators & Supervisors Innovative Counselor Educator of the Year award. 

Dr. Kerulis clinical areas of expertise include general mental health, sport & exercise psychology, and lifestyle & wellness. Her years of experience as an athlete, fitness professional, and therapist have created the foundation for her belief that the skills necessary to achieve success in sport and performance are the same skills necessary to achieve excellence in life. 

Recent Presentations and Publications:

Kerulis, M. & Shinitzky, H. (2019, October). Ethical Media Interactions in Sport Psychology: Analyzing Ethical Decision Making in Modern Media. Presented at the meeting of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, Portland, OR. 

Shinitzky, H., Kerulis, M., Karen, C., & Steidinger, J. (2019, August). Unique perspectives of the impact of media on sport psychology. Presented at the meeting of the American Psychological Association, Chicago, IL. 

Kerulis, M. (2018, February). The psychology of horror and cults: An analysis of ‘On Clover Road.’ Presented at the American Blues Theater Town Hall, Chicago, IL.

Kerulis, M. (2018, December). Showing up. Presented atTEDxChicago, Chicago, IL.

Kerulis, M. (2018, May). Analysis of Buddy: The Buddy Holly story: Celebrities’ personal lives, public lives, and the trend of premature death. Presentation at the American Blues Theater Town Hall, Chicago, IL.

Kerulis, M. (2018, April). Getting into the creative zone. Presented at the Savvy Women in Marketing (SWIM) Salon, Chicago, IL.

Kerulis, M. (2018). Sport & exercise in families. In J. Lebow, A. Chambers, & D. Breunlin (Eds.), Encyclopedia of couple and family therapy.New York, NY: Springer.

Kerulis, M. (2019). Experiment in sport. In J. Taylor (Ed.), Comprehensive applied sport psychology: From attitude to athletic success and everything in between and beyond. New York, NY: Routledge.

Kerulis, M. (2016). Strengths based practice of clinical sport psychology. In J. K. Edwards, A. Young, & H. J. Nikels (Eds.),Handbook of strengths-based clinical practices: Finding common factors(pp. 227–237). New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.

Kerulis, M., Goodman, S., & Pinsler, S. (2015) Exercise addiction. In R. Smith (Ed.), Strategies and techniques for substance and process addictions(pp. 263–274). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

Kerulis, M. (2012). Aiding student-athletes with identity development. Journal of Counseling in Illinois, 2(1), 39–51.


Youth and Concussions: Insight on Prevention and Protocol from Athletic Trainer Amanda Khor

Fall is in the air, and that means football season is here. Along with the tailgates and touchdowns come concussions. A form of a traumatic brain injury (TBI), concussions are common in many sports and have received more attention lately as former professional athletes have come forward with their stories about long-term struggles that resulted from multiple concussions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that between 1.6 million and 3.8 million sports- and recreation-related concussions happen annually in the United States. People who have concussions can experience headaches, personality changes, motor control problems, depression, and insomnia, to name a few symptoms.

Back to School Stress: How to Mentally Prepare for Tryouts

Summer is coming to an end, students are heading back to school, and sports tryouts are right around the corner. Athletes of all ages experience jitters when it comes to tryouts or being scouted. No matter your level of play, these four tips can help you prepare your mind so that you can confidently perform under pressure during tryouts.

Four Steps for Creating a Healthy Body Image During Summer Months

The pressure to look good and show off our bodies is high during summer. Developing a healthy body image and being confident from the inside out takes concentrated effort and practice. Rejecting the body-shaming trend and speaking positively to yourself are ways you can practice developing a healthy body image. External factors, such as properly fitting clothing, eating well, and exercise, can bolster your body-to-mind confidence and include benefits like feeling healthier and lowering risk for disease.

Kellogg's David Jay Collins Discusses the Process Behind His Debut Novel Gaybash

Chicago is known as a center of creativity, and we are lucky to have fantastic, original authors who write about real issues and raw emotions. I had the pleasure of talking with one such author, David Jay Collins, program manager at Kellogg Executive Education at Northwestern University. We discussed the process of writing his first novel, Gaybash, and the social implications of searching for one’s self in an uncertain world.

2016 Counseling Awareness Month: Better Together with Counseling

April is counseling awareness month and the American Counseling Association (ACA) is working with more than 56,000 counselors to break stigma related to seeking mental health services. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that only 25 percent of adults with mental health issues believe that other people are sympathetic toward people who have mental illness, and that 57 percent of adults believe that people would be sympathetic toward people who have mental health issues. This is a clear indicator that we must educate the public about need for support and encouragement for people of all ages to seek assistance from counselors.

The Death of the Date and the Hook-Up Culture: 10 Tips to Resurrect Relationships

The death of the date and the hook-up culture have shifted the way heterosexual couples connect, whether it’s for a random or regular hook-up or when two people are looking for a relationship. Whatever the case, the following tips can be applied as a reminder about how to be open about your intentions during, between, and after dates. These tips include gender roles that some people find important in relationships, and they also carry ideas about how to be romantic in an age of impersonal assumptions crafted through dating websites and apps.