RWJF Health & Society Scholar:
Clinical Psychology, Psychiatric Epidemiology
Area(s) of Expertise:
Childhood Adversity, Stress and Psychopathology
Dr. Katie McLaughlin is a clinical psychologist with interests in how the childhood social environment influences brain and behavioral development in children and adolescents. She has a joint Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and in Chronic Disease Epidemiology from Yale University and is an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Washington. Her research examines how environmental experience shapes emotional, cognitive, and neurobiological development throughout childhood and adolescence. Dr. McLaughlin’s overarching goal is to understand how adverse environments alter developmental processes in ways that increase risk for psychopathology. Her research uncovers specific developmental processes that are disrupted by adverse environmental experiences early in life and determines how those disruptions increase risk for mental health problems in children and adolescents. Understanding these mechanisms is critical for the development of interventions to prevent the onset of psychopathology in children who experience adversity. Dr. McLaughlin’s overarching goal is to contribute to greater understanding of the role of environmental experience in shaping children’s development, so as to inform the creation of interventions, practices, and policies to promote adaptive development in society’s most vulnerable members.
Dr. McLaughlin's research has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Jacobs Foundation, the Charles H. Hood Foundation, the Brain and Behavior Foundation, and the IMHRO One Mind Institute. She has received early career awards from the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology, the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, and the Jacobs Foundation as well as the Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology from the American Psychological Association.