Educational Psychology: Applied Developmental Science

The Educational Psychology and Applied Developmental Science (EP-ADS)  program focuses on the social and cognitive lives of children and adolescents, the contribution of school and out-of-school settings on learning and development, and the development and evaluation of interventions designed to alter and improve developmental pathways. Course work provides content in educational and applied developmental psychology as well as research design, methods and statistics. Faculty members in the EP-ADS program facilitate a learning community among students to foster productive and engaging learning.

Limited English proficiency, poverty, inadequate access to social supports and health care, and the presence of developmental or acquired disabilities pose significant challenge to children and youth and prevent their success in school and life. The EP-ADS program takes a strengths-based approach to understanding such complex challenges to society. Research conducted in EP-ADS examines the ways in which school settings, after-school programs, and families hold the potential to promote resilience and reduce school failure.

Our current students chose this program because...

Shannon Varga (Ph.D program)

"I became interested in the Educational Psychology - Applied Developmental Science program because the work that was being conducted by my mentor was in concert with my research interests and because of the interdisciplinary curriculum it offers its students. I realized it was the right program for me when I visited UVA during an internship and found that the people of Curry created a group dynamic that was unlike any other graduate program I visited; it was a community that was driven, structured, and supportive. I knew it was definitely an environment that I wanted to be in."

Mai Pham (M.Ed program)

“I chose Educational Psychology - Applied Developmental Science because I fell in love with the program’s focus on development, the flexibility to incorporate my interest in Asian American identity and motivation in education, as well as the incredible professors that comprise this knock out team. In addition, the Curry School offers wonderful and frequent opportunities and resources to get involved with research, the faculty, and local community. Lastly? It doesn’t hurt that Charlottesville has an abundance of character and charm to boot.”

Kaitlyn Washburn (M.Ed program)

Kaitlyn Washburn"I chose Educational Psychology- Applied Developmental Science because of the structure of the program, which allowed me to incorporate my own interests in physical activity, nutrition, and overall wellness and see how these factors are related to development across the life span. I fell in love with the Curry School and all it has to offer including a faculty that is so eager to help motivate and guide you to reach your goals, as well as provide research opportunities to enhance the learning experience. Charlottesville truly is the happiest place on earth!"



See what our alumni are doing.

More Information

Affiliated Research and Programs

Masters and doctoral students in the Educational Psychology - Applied Developmental Science program learn about schools, classrooms and other social settings as contexts critical to child and adolescent development. Research opportunities are available in relation to teacher professional development and teacher effects, preschool classroom quality, English Language Learners in early childhood, social and emotional learning interventions, youths’ perception of stigma, early childhood classroom quality, peer-mentoring programs, and positive youth development programs.

The Curry School of Education has several key, educationally-relevant research opportunities available.

And please follow these links for information about these related programs:


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