Research interests


Adolescence; Digital media; Gender; STEM engagement; Mental health; Peer influence; Sexual behavior

During the adolescent developmental period, mental health symptomatology spikes, sexual and romantic relationship initiation often occurs, and academic disparities solidify. Many of these outcomes--both good and bad--are shaped by gender socialization and other identity-based social processes that start early in childhood. These experiences are further influenced by growing up in the digital era, including the ubiquity of social media. Gendered processes become increasingly salient at the transition from childhood to adolescence--a time when biological, social, and psychological development rapidly transforms teens' bodies, minds, social roles, and relationships. Adolescents with minoritized identities, including those of marginalized racial/ethnic backgrounds and youth exploring sexual and gender minority identities, face unique challenges and opportunities during this period, shaped in part by stigma, prejudice, and oppression.

My work seeks to understand how gender and related sociocultural forces shape adolescent developmental trajectories. I aim to use multi-methodological investigations of developmental processes, including qualitative designs that center teen voices as well as complex statistical modeling approaches that capture between-person differences and within-person change, to understand how social, contextual, and interpersonal factors affect adolescents’ experience with sexuality and sexual behaviors, mental health experiences including body image and depression, and opportunities to succeed in gender-stereotyped STEM and HEED (health care, early education, domestic work) fields.


Current Projects

Well-being and Adolescents' Virtual Experiences (WAVE)

Principal Investigator: Anne Maheux

The purpose of the WAVE study is to move beyond “screen time” to address the specific online social experiences that promote character development and well-being. Data collection with high school students is planned for Spring 2024. Students and school administrators selected the WAVE study in a school-led matching experiment through the Character Lab Research Network. 

Adolescents' Math Attitudes and Social Media Experiences (AMASE)

Principal Investigator: Anne Maheux; Co-I: Sophia Choukas-Bradley

The purpose of the AMASE study, involving two cohorts and multiple waves of data collection, is to understand early adolescents' endorsement of gendered math stereotypes, social media use, appearance concerns, and academic engagement. Data collection for AMASE finished in Spring 2021 and data analyses are ongoing.

Project DAISY 

(Disordered Eating, Academics, Identity, and Sexual Experiences among Young Adults)

Funded by the Psi Chi Mamie Phipps Clark Diversity Research Grant

Principal Investigators: Anne Maheux, Savannah Roberts; Co-I: Sophia Choukas-Bradley

Project DAISY is a cross-sectional, self-report, anonymous online survey among emerging adults ages 18-25. The study examines a broad ranges of sociocultural experiences and beliefs, identity characteristics, mental health outcomes and behaviors, and relational experiences relevant to the developmental period of emerging adulthood. Data collection was completed in Spring 2021 and analyses are ongoing.

Black Adolescents' STEM Attitudes and Motivation (BALSAM)

Principal Investigator: Anne Maheux; Co-I: Sophia Choukas-Bradley

In the BALSAM study, we investigate STEM attitudes and experiences among racially/ethnically diverse 6th, 7th, and 8th grade adolescents. The purpose of the BALSAM study is to understand factors unique to the STEM engagement of Girls of Color, including STEM belonging, gendered racial microaggressions, and intersectional STEM stereotypes. BALSAM involves three waves of data collection across a one-year period; data collection completed in Spring 2022. Analyses are ongoing.

Prosocial Purpose and Adolescents' Gendered Experiences (PAGE)

Principal Investigator: Anne Maheux; Co-I: Sophia Choukas-Bradley

The purpose of the PAGE study is to investigate the unique contributions of gender typicality and gendered traits (i.e., stereotypically gender-typed behaviors) in the prosocial behavior and empathy development of adolescents in 7th and 11th grade. PAGE involves three waves of data collection across a one-year period; data collection completed in Spring 2022. Analyses are ongoing.




Structural Equation Modeling (SEM)

Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM)

Longitudinal SEM/HLM

Mixture Modeling

Qualitative Coding

Systematic Review/Meta-analyses