top of page

New/Current Projects

The 3E Study: Economic and Educational Contributors to Emerging Adults’ Cardiometabolic Health  (2023-2027)

Hispanic-Serving Institutions are institutions of higher education that prioritize supporting low-socioeconomic position students of color through their educational experiences; these institutions’ efforts may also promote health among diverse young adult populations. The design of this study allows us to longitudinally examine the economic and educational determinants of cardiometabolic health among diverse emerging adults, which are not yet comprehensively understood. Our study will help identify modifiable risk and protective factors from the economic and education sectors that could be targets for interventions to promote positive health behaviors and reduce risk of negative cardiometabolic health outcomes among emerging adults. This study is funded by NHLBI (R01 HL160703-01A1; Co-PI Dr. Alison Cohen).

Visit our website and follow our Instagram @3E_Study!

The COVID-19 College Study (2020-present)

This study seeks to quantitatively and qualitatively understand the experiences of college students during the COVID-19 pandemic, develop survey measures that operationalize civic values, attitudes, and engagement, measure the prevalence of these constructs in a national sample of approximately 725 college students, analyze data from open-ended qualitative responses and also identify associations between different variables (including health experiences, civic variables, demographic factors, stress and coping mechanisms, prior health and civic experiences, and academic engagement). Additionally, serological testing for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies across a community-based sample facilitated by home-based testing can determine the level and distribution of prior infection in the community. Additional, qualitative data were collected via photovoice and Zoom interviews, with another round of interviews planned for Summer 2023 (lead by Ph.D. student Elena Maker-Castro). The first set of studies were published in the Journal of Adolescent Health (Cohen, Hoyt, & Dull, 2020; Hoyt et al., 2021). There are now almost a dozen (mostly student-led papers) that have come out of this project to date on stress, mental health, and civic engagement! This study is funded by the Adolescent and Young Adult Research Network, the USF Jesuit Foundation, and Fordham University (Co-PI Dr. Alison Cohen).

Puberty and Sociocultural Experiences Among Mexican American Boys (2019-present)

Puberty is a time of physical, social, and cognitive changes with direct implications for adolescents’ development and long-term well-being. Although scientific knowledge of puberty is growing, there remains little information about how puberty impacts the social and cultural experiences of Latino boys in the U.S. The goal of this project, El Proyecto Hijos de Tucson (The Tucson Sons Project), is to understand how biological and physical markers of puberty relate to everyday experiences of boys from Mexican-American families. The study will conduct interviews with 400 Mexican-American families who have a male adolescent between the ages of 12-16 years old. By following the families over two years, the project will investigate how boys’ pubertal development influences social interactions with their parents, teachers, and friends, and examine how these biological and social factors together impact their mental health and well-being. The research will provide critical information to families, community members, and health care providers about the ways in which puberty shapes the context and development of Latino boys. This study is funded by the National Science Foundation (Developmental Sciences #1917702; Co-PIs Dr. Katharine Zeiders, Dr. Ada Wilkinson-Lee)

Election Studies (2016-present)

Sociopolitical contexts can influence individuals’ daily experiences, but we know little about how particular issues salient to elections (e.g., immigration, religious freedom, marriage) are experienced physiologically. We hope to understand how individuals’ political affiliations, beliefs, thoughts, and attitudes relate to key election issues, and in turn, predict differential psychological and physiological responses. We completed two sets of studies during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, including a two-site study of college students (Hoyt et al., 2018; Hoyt et al., 2021; Grzanka et al., 2020) and a pilot study of Latinx youth and parents (Zeiders et al., 2020). Our most recent election project examined feelings, behaviors, and attitudes of college students across 10 universities during the 2020 U.S. presidential election (Ballard et al., 2022; Kornbluh et al., 2022). We are already planning for another round of data collection during the 2024 U.S. presidential election. 

Enacting Maturity (2018-2022)

In this line of work, we seek to understand the ways in which young people experience meaningful roles and autonomy - which we refer to as enacting maturity – across the pubertal transition. Guided by a literature review and drawing on data from focus groups and surveys with middle school and high school students, we created and validated a survey measure of enacting maturity and examined links to well-being (Ballard, Hoyt, & Johnson, 2022Hoyt et al., 2021). This year, we extended this work by considering how the contexts young people are embedded in and their various intersecting identities influence their experiences with enacting maturity, and we discuss how adults and organizations can promote young people enacting maturing in ways that are safe, worthwhile, and equitable (Ballard, Hoyt, & Johnson, in press). This study is funded by the Adolescent and Young Adult Research Network (Co-PI Dr. Parissa Jahromi Ballard)

EXERT Study (2018-2020)

This study, lead by 3D alum Dr. Natasha Chaku, examined how exercise affects cognition (executive functioning) in youth. This study was funded Fordham University, SRCD, and Psi Chi.

Secondary Data Analysis Projects

The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health)

This project, “Social and Biological Determinants of Adolescent Activity Behaviors and Young Adult Racial/Ethnic Health Disparities” was funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research (R21 NR017154 ; co-PI Dr. Mark Pachucki)

Sample papers

 The Adolescent Brain Cognitive DevelopmentSM (ABCD) Study

Sample papers coming soon.


The NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (SECCYD)

Sample papers

Developmental Psychology Research
Developmental Psychology Research

Youth in Action: Engaging Adolescents in Research and Policy

Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR)

We are working on a series of papers evaluating YPAR from a developmental perspective.

Collaborators: Dr. Parissa Ballard (Wake Forest School of Medicine), Dr. Ahna Suleiman (University of California at Berkeley), Dr. Emily Ozer, (University of California at Berkeley)

e.g., Applying a Developmental Lens to Youth-Led Participatory Action Research: A Critical Examination and Integration of Existing Evidence

STEP-YPAR (2015-current)

Dr. Hoyt and the 3D Lab run an annual summer course in psychology and research methods, based on the principles of Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR) for 10th grade students enrolled in the Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP) at Fordham University. 

Participatory Action Research: PSYC 3510 (2021-current)

Dr. Hoyt teaches a YPAR class every fall, where Fordham students partner with local high school students on a semester-long YPAR project. In 2021-2022, we partnered with All Hallows in the Bronx and completed research and action projects around boys' mental health, parent-child relationships in immigrant families, and COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy

bottom of page