Adolescent and Young Adult Interest Group


Adolescent/Young Adult Interest Group

Mission: The mission of the Adolescent and Young Adult (AYAs) Interest Group is to provide a structure for Society for Health Psychology Members to have an active role in the advancement of research, practice, policy, social justice and advocacy (e.g., access to care) for AYAs with chronic health conditions, and to raise awareness of the unique developmental needs and challenges that are commonly present in this population.

Primary Goals:

  1. Support training, best practices, and professional development needs of psychologists and allied professionals working with AYAs with chronic health conditions, such as:
    1. Psychosocial and physical health issues specific to AYAs
    2. Psychosocial and systemic issues that impact access to care and transition to adult care
    3. Promote development of standards, guidelines, competencies, and processes that strengthen and advance clinical and professional practice of those working with AYAs
  2. Promote research endeavors that contribute to the growing body of literature in AYA care
    1. Identify research priorities for AYAs with chronic health conditions
    2. Utilize research to address gaps in understanding and/or providing developmentally appropriate clinical care, including considerations of the unique developmental needs for AYAs
    3. Identify and promote the development of new theoretical models, measurement tools, methodological approaches, and interventions specific to AYAs and their unique developmental needs
  3. Boost networking and collaboration amongst AYA care providers
    1. Encourage research and professional partnerships between pediatric and health psychologists, adult-based health care societies, and professionals of other disciplines interested in AYAs
  4. Engage in advocacy efforts, including local and national policy initiatives, and address diversity, inclusion, equality, and social justice issues

Fact Sheets


Examples of Previous Activities

02/17/21 Webinar: Navigating Challenges in Healthcare Transition for Adolescents and Young Adults (AYAs) with Chronic Pain and Illness: Perspectives and Recommendations for Psychologists


Database of internship and post-doc training sites with AYA opportunities

Helpful Tips for Working in AYA Health Care

For more information, please email us at


Jennifer Allen, PhD

Chair of AYA Interest Group

Elise McKelvey, MA

Chair Elect

Lila Pereira, PhD

Past Chair

Megan McComas, PhD

Advocacy & Equity Chair

Rina S. Fox, PhD, MPH

Interventions Chair

Karly M. Murphy, PhD

Measurement Chair

R. Elyse Heidelberg, PsyD

Pediatric Representative

Samantha Burns Artherholt, PhD

Adult Representative

Laura Oswald, PhD

Early Career Psychologist Representative

Dominique Noelle Legros, MA

Trainee Representative