David A. Perna, PhD, PhD, Psychologist in Newton
Dr. Perna is a licensed psychologist who primarily treats patients who suffer from anger disorders and learning challenges. Dr. Perna maintains an academic appointment at Harvard Medical School and is a Clinical Associate at McLean Hospital, the medical school's largest psychiatric teaching facility. Dr. Perna is the former Director of the Child/Adolescent Anger Management Program at McLean Hospital where he worked with children/adolescents in a variety of clinical settings (outpatient and inpatient units as well as an acute residential treatment program).
Dr. Perna's approach to anger management is guided by his understanding of learning disabilities and an understanding of how to promote change in his patient's lives, their family systems, as well as the academic programs in which they are enrolled.
Dr. Perna's training and work with children, adolescents, and adults has allowed him to understand the developmental markers/challenges that are associated with healthy (positive) development. He strives to promote holistic solutions that allow his patients to become independent and resilient by the conclusion of treatment.
Call or Email David A. Perna, PhD for a free phone consultation now - (617) 762-5419


  • Years in Practice: 25 Years
  • School: California School of Professional Psychology
  • Year Graduated: 1995
  • License No. and State: 7172 Massachusetts


  • Avg Cost (per session): $140 - $260
  • Sliding Scale: Yes
  • Accepts Insurance: Yes
Accepted Payment Methods: ACH Bank transfer, American Express, Cash, Check, Discover, Health Savings Account, Mastercard, Paypal, Visa

Accepted Insurance Plans

  • 1 Dr. Perna works with a variety of insurers. He
  • 2 is able to see patients who have a PPO option or
  • 3 Out-of-Network benefits. He and his staff also
  • 4 facilitate single-case agreements with multiple
  • 5 insurers for patients who are unable to find an
  • 6 acceptable specialist within their network.
  • Out of Network
Verify your health insurance coverage when you arrange your first visit.

Additional Credentials

  • License No. and State: 7172 Commonwealth of Massachusetts
  • Membership: Harvard Medical School / Lecturer in Psychology
  • Member Since: 1991

David A. Perna, PhD's Groups

Middle School Anger-Management/Social Skill Group

The Middle School Anger Management Group is designed to prevent younger adolescents from escalating to higher levels of interpersonal conflict within their home, school, and larger community settings. Members are more likely to have social skill challenges and commonly struggle in their school placements. Most members have identified learning challenges that have been exacerbated during the transition to a complex middle school learning environment. Group time is generally focused more on activities and cooperative group interactions.

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Adolescent Anger Management Group

The Intensive Adolescent Anger Management Group is designed to meet the needs of older adolescents who have struggled with anger management issues for an extended period of time. Most group participants have required a hospital placement and/or a specialized school placement and struggle with mood instability, social skill development and at times substance use issues. Participants require time to "Peel Away" the layers of prior treatment frustrations and engage with peers and CCS staff in an attempt to develop a new pathway through high school..

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College-Vocational Transition Group

This group meets in Newton on Tuesdays at 6pm. The group orients participants to the organizational and emotional challenges that are typically encountered during their transition to a successful post-high school phase of life. Topics that will are covered in this group include the negotiation of relationships with family members, organizational skill enhancement/use of technology, vocational stability/success, integration of clinical skills into multiple life domains, substance use, and the movement to an increased level of social/familial/financial independence.

More about this group


  • Anger Management
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Child or Adolescent


  • ADHD
  • Adoption
  • Asperger's Syndrome
  • Autism
  • Behavioral Issues
  • College Transition
  • Depression
  • Dual Diagnosis
  • Family Conflict
  • Internet Addiction
  • Oppositional Defiance
  • Peer Relationships
  • School Issues
  • Substance Abuse
  • Suicidal Ideation
  • Teen Violence
  • Video Game Addiction

Mental Health

  • Impulse Control Disorders
  • Mood Disorders

Client Focus


  • Children (6 to 10)
  • Preteens / Tweens (11 to 13)
  • Adolescents / Teenagers (14 to 19)

Treatment Approach

Treatment Orientation

  • Anger Management
  • Change Theory
  • Family / Marital
  • Family Systems
  • Holistic
  • Motivational Interviewing
  • Multicultural
  • Psychodynamic


  • Individuals
  • Family
  • Group


  • Video Counseling
Last Modified: 06 Oct 2017
David A. Perna, PhD, PhD, Psychologist in Newton

David A. Perna, PhD

Psychologist, PhD