Dr. Peter Lichtenberg

Director and Distinguished Professor,
Wayne State University

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Wayne State University
Detroit, MI

Dr. Peter Lichtenberg

Director and Distinguished Professor,
Wayne State University


Peter A. Lichtenberg, Ph.D., ABPP is the Director of The Institute of Gerontology and the Merrill Palmer Skillman Institute. He is also a Professor of Psychology at Wayne State University. He received his bachelor’s degree from Washington University in St. Louis, and his Master’s and doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Purdue University. After his internship he completed a post doctoral fellowship in geriatric neuropsychology at the University of Virginia Medical School where he also became a faculty member. A clinician and researcher throughout his career Dr. Lichtenberg, one of the first board certified Clinical Geropsychologists in the nation, has made contributions to the practice of psychology across a variety of areas including in Alzheimer’s disease,  medical rehabilitation and with those suffering from late life depression. He is particularly interested in the area of intersection between financial capacity and financial exploitation; finding ways to balance autonomy and protection for older adults. His work in this area led him to be a contributor to the 2008 Assessment of Diminished Capacity of Older Adults: A Handbook for Psychologists published jointly by the American Bar and American Psychological Associations. In 2013 he published the first nationally representative study on predictors of older adult scam victims. In 2015 he published the Lichtenberg Financial Decision Making Rating Scale, and the Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale, and has contributed several empirical studies on the scales since then. These tools can be used to assess major financial decisions and/or transactions of older adults. He has authored 7 books and over 180 scientific articles in Geropsychology including being the senior editor for the American Psychological Association’s Handbook of Clinical Geropsychology.


Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana, United States
Ph.D., 1986
Clinical Psychology
1981 To 1986
Dissertation: Physical and mental health factors relate to chronic pain in older adults with osteoarthritis
Advisor: Clifford Swensen

Washington University
St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Bachelors degree, 1981
1977 To 1981

Job History

Wayne State University Institute of Gerontology
Detroit, MI, United States
January 1999 - present

Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan
Associate Chief and Training Director, Neuropsychology
Detroit, MI, United States
January 1991 - January 1999

Western State Hospital
Director, Geriatric Psychology
Staunton, VA, United States
August 1986 - January 1991

Areas Of Expertise

  • Crime: Elder Victim


  • Psychology