In this one-hour webinar, Carolyn McCarty, PhD, and Ashley Maliken, PhD, describe current research on the behavioral and neurological factors that contribute to vulnerability in adolescence. They discuss reward-seeking in adolescence, and how it can manifest in healthy versus problematic ways. Finally, the presenters discuss principles of prevention and intervention, and apply them to prevalent adolescent problem behaviors, such as substance use, depression, and risky sexual behavior.

This webinar is part of the Maternal and Child Public Health webinar series.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe behavioral and neurological factors that contribute to vulnerability in adolescence.
  • Distinguish healthy and problematic reward-seeking in adolescence.
  • Apply principles of prevention and intervention to prevalent adolescent problem behaviors.

Intended Audience

State public health personnel working with parents, women, children and youth, and families in Region 10, US Department of Health Services.


Carolyn McCarty, PhD, is a Research Associate Professor at the University of Washington, a licensed clinical psychologist, and a core faculty member for the University of Washington Leadership in Education and Adolescent Health (UW LEAH) training program. Dr. McCarty directs a research program focused on the interrelationships between, mental health, substance use and physical health throughout adolescence, as well as screening and intervening to reduce adolescent depression. Dr. McCarty has published over 60 papers and book chapters related to child and adolescent health and well-being.

Ashley Maliken, PhD, is a postdoctoral fellow in the Division of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Seattle Children's and the University of Washington LEAH. Dr. Maliken completed her training in child clinical psychology at the University of Washington, where her research focused on the development of emotion regulation abilities in children and adolescents from high-risk backgrounds. Her primary clinical interests include adolescent mood and anxiety disorders, and self-injurious behavior.

Photograph of several teens hanging out.
Air Date: 
Monday, October 20, 2014, 12:00 pm PDT to Thursday, October 30, 2014, 1:00 pm PDT
Maternal and Child Health
1 hour
Maternal and Child Public Health