Biographical Statement

Jennifer L. Tanner, Ph.D. (The Pennsylvania State University, Human Development and Family Studies, 2001) is a Visiting Assistant Research Professor at The Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. (click here to learn more about Dr. Tanner’s training)

Dr. Tanner is an applied developmental psychologist. Using developmental theory and methods, her research is focused on clarifying the pathways to individual and family health, mental health, and life span adaptation. Prior to her fellowship years (National Institute for Mental Health, Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (2006-2008)), she was Research Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work at Simmons College in Boston, MA. Her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals, books, and Handbooks and presented in professional forums. Jennifer’s research program takes a multidisciplinary approach to developing theory of normal, abnormal, and optimal development from adolescence to young adulthood, roughly ages 12 to 35. Complementing theory design, her empirical work takes advantage of cutting-edge methodologies to examine ways in which different pathways taken from adolescence through emerging and young adulthood are associated with diverse experiences and outcomes (e.g., mental health, health, functioning). She is dedicated to translating her work and the work of others to inform programs, policies, and services that seek to enhance and optimize development and adjustment during the transition to adulthood.

Dr. Tanner balances her research career with teaching, consulting, advising, and writing for a wide-variety of audiences. She has taught undergraduate and graduate level courses since 1998 in departments of Psychology (Assumption College, Fairleigh Dickinson University), Human Development and Family Studies (The Pennsylvania State University), Child Development (Tufts University), and Counseling, Developmental, and Educational Psychology (Boston College). Established with the 1st Conference on Emerging Adulthood in 2003, Dr. Tanner is Co-Chair of the Society for Research on Emerging Adulthood dedicated to the goal of connecting an interdisciplinary, international network of scholars interested in and dedicated to the study of the lives of individuals between ages 18 and 29. She serves on the Board of Directors of Yellowbrick, Inc., a private, physician-owned psychiatric healthcare organization for emerging adults, and on the Editorial Boards of The Journal of Adolescent Research and The Journal of Youth and Adolescence.