Skip to Content

College of Nursing

Faculty and Staff

Bernardine M. Pinto, PhD

Title: Associate Dean for Research and Professor
College of Nursing
Phone: 803-777-9272
Fax: 803-777-5935

College of Nursing 
University of South Carolina
1601 Greene Street, Room 302B
Columbia, SC 29208-4001 
United States

Office Hours:


Dr. Pinto received a PhD and a Masters (with honors) in Clinical Psychology from Western Michigan University in 1992 and 1987 respectively, and a Masters in Psychology in 1982 from Bangalore University.  


Dr. Pinto has extensive teaching experience.  In addition to classroom teaching and seminars, Dr. Pinto has served as supervisor for psychology interns, post-doctoral fellows, and junior faculty at W. Alpert Medical School of Brown University.


Dr. Pinto's research interests focus on the development of theoretically-based exercise interventions for adults, and in promoting healthy behaviors among cancer survivors with a special emphasis on exercise promotion among cancer survivors. As Principal Investigator, she has received funding from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institute on Aging, National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. She has received continuous federal funding for her research since 1996.


Dr. Pinto has published over 95 original articles and book chapters and lectures extensively both nationally and internationally.

Professional Service  

Dr. Pinto is a member of the following professional organizations:

  • American Psychological Association
  • Society of Behavioral Medicine (Fellow status a/o March 2006)
  • Member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine Cancer SIG Subcommittee on Mentoring
  • Member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine Cancer SIG Subcommittee on Awards 

Professional Practice

Dr. Pinto is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and has provided clinical services such as depression management, weight management and smoking cessation, to patients presenting with behavioral health issues.

Research Studies (Selected)

Peer Mentoring for Exercise Promotion among Veterans with Coronary Disease.  COIN Career Development Training, Providence Veterans Administration Medical Center-$27,693. Principal Investigator.

Health Behaviors Change in Colorectal Cancer Survivors. NCI (K07). 2009-2013. Mentor (E. Coups, Principal Investigator). 

Exercise and Relaxation Intervention for Young Adult Cancer Survivors. American Cancer Society Mentored Research Scholar Award-$723,000. 2009-2013. Mentor (C. Rabin, Principal Investigator). 

Community Volunteers Promoting Physical Activity among Cancer Survivors. NCI (R01)-$1.5 million. 2009-2014. Principal Investigator. 

Feasibility of Physical Activity and Relaxation Training for Cancer Survivors, Susan G. Komen Foundation - $242,334. 2005-2007.  Co-Investigator (with C. Rabin, Principal Investigator).                                   

Computerized Physical Activity Promotion in Primary Care. NHLBI (R01) - $52,468. 2005-2006. Co-Investigator (with B. Marcus, Principal Investigator). 

Social Cognitive Theory and Physical Activity after Endometrial Cancer. NCI (R01) - $91,817. 2004-2009. Co-Investigator (with K. Basen-Engquist, Principal Investigator). 

Promoting Physical Activity after Colorectal Cancer. NCI (R01) - $1.87 million. 2004-2011. Principal Investigator.

Maintaining Exercise after Cardiac Rehabilitation.  NHLBI (R01) - $2.31 million. 2004-2011. Principal Investigator. 

Translating Research-based Physical Activity Promotion among Cancer Survivors: A Pilot Study, Lance Armstrong Foundation - $150,000. 2004-2007. Principal Investigator.

Publications (Selected)

Pinto, B.M., Stein, K. & Dunsiger, S. (In press). Peer mentoring to promote physical activity among cancer survivors: Effects on quality of life. Psycho-Oncology. 

Pinto, B.M., Dunsiger, S. I., & Waldemore, M.  (in press).  Physical activity and psychosocial benefits among breast cancer patients.  Psycho-Oncology

Trunzo, J., Pinto, B.M. & Chougule, P. (in press). Smoking related cancers, problem solving, distress, and risk behaviors among patients and caregivers. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology

Pinto, B.M. & Dunsiger, S.I. (in press).  Mediators of exercise maintenance after cardiac rehabilitation.  Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation

Pinto, B.M., Waldemore, M. & Rosen, R. (2015).  A community-based partnership to promote exercise among cancer survivors: Lessons learned.  International Journal of Behavioral Medicine

Pinto, B. M., Stein, K. S. & Dunsiger, S. I.  (2015). Peers promoting physical activity among breast cancer survivors: A randomized controlled trial.  Health Psychology

Pinto, B.M., Goldstein, M.G., Papandonatos, G.D., Marcus, B.H., & Farrell, N. (2013). Home-based physical activity intervention for colorectal cancer survivors. Psycho-Oncology, 22, 54-64. 

Rabin, C., Simpson, N., Morrow, K., & Pinto, B.  (2013).  Intervention format and delivery preferences among young adult cancer survivors. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 20, 304-310.

Pinto, B.M., Papandonatos, G.D., & Goldstein, M.G. (2013).  A randomized trial to promote physical activity among breast cancer patients. Health Psychology, 32, 616-626. 

Pinto, B. M., Dunsiger, S.I., Farrell, N., Marcus, B.H., & Todaro, J.F. (2013). Psychosocial outcomes of an exercise maintenance intervention after Phase II cardiac rehabilitation.  Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation, 33, 91-98. 

Zhou, E., Dunsiger, S. I. & Pinto, B.M. (2013). Proactive versus reactive recruitment in a physical activity intervention for breast cancer survivors: Does it matter? Clinical Trials, 10, 587-592. 

Basen-Engquist, K., Carmack, C.L., Perkins, H.Y., Hughes, D.C., Serice, S., Scruggs, S., Pinto, B.M., & Waters, A. (2011). Steps to Health: A study of social cognitive theory and physical activity in survivors of endometrial cancer. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 12, 27-35. 

Rabin, C., Simpson, N., Morrow, K., & Pinto, B. M. (2011). Behavioral and psychosocial program needs of young adult cancer survivors.  Qualitative Health Research, 21, 796-806. 

Pinto B.M., Goldstein, M.G., Papandonatos, G.D., Farrell, N., Tilkemeier, P., Marcus, B.H., & Todaro, J.F. (2011).  Maintenance of exercise after Phase II cardiac rehabilitation.  American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 41, 274-283. 

Schmitz, K.H., Courneya, K.S., Matthews, C.M., Demark-Wahnefried, W., Galvao, D. A., Pinto, B. M., Irwin, M. L., Wolin, K.Y., Segal, R.J., Lucia, A., Schneider, C.M., Von Gruenigen, V., & Schwartz, A.L. (2010). American College of Sports Medicine roundtable on exercise guidelines for cancer survivors. Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise, 42, 258-266. 

Other Peer-Reviewed Publications (Selected)

Pinto, B. M., Wahnefried, D.M, Rowland, J. & Aziz, N. (2014).  Accelerometer determined lifestyles behaviors over time-Letter. Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention

Pinto, B. M. & Ciccolo, J.  (2010). Physical activity motivation and cancer survivorship. Recent Results in Cancer Research, 186, 367-387. 

Pinto, B. M. & Floyd, A.  (2008). Theories underlying health promotion interventions among cancer patients. Seminars in Oncology Nursing, 24, 153-163.

Book Chapters 

Pinto, B. M.  & Frierson, G.M. (2013). Physical activity and health. In M. Gellman & J.R. Turner (Eds.),   Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine. Springer Publishing. 

Pinto, B. M. & Ciccolo, J. (2011). Motivation for lifestyle changes after cancer. In J. Lester & P. Schmitt (Eds.), Cancer Rehabilitation and Survivorship: Transdisciplinary Approaches to Personalized Care (pp.285-293).  ONS Publishing Division. 

Pinto, B. M.  & Hartman, S. J. (2010). Exercise and cancer. In J. C. Holland, W. Breitbart, P. B. Jacobsen, M. S. Lederberg, M. Loscalzo, & R. McCorkle, Psycho-Oncology (2nd Edition, pp.28-42). Oxford Press.   

Pinto, B. M., Rabin, C., & Frierson, G. M. (2008).  Interventions to modify physical activity. In S.M. Miller, D.J., Bowen, R. T. Croyle and J. Rowland (Eds.), Handbook of cancer control and behavioral science: A resource for researchers, practitioners and policymakers (pp. 237-250),American Psychological Association, Washington D.C.