Wadiya Udell (she/her)


Wadiya Udell

B.A. Psychology, Wheaton College
Ph.D. Developmental Psychology, Columbia University

Office: UW2-324
Phone: 425-352-3672
Email: wau2@uw.edu
Mailing Box: 11136 NE 180th, Bothell, WA 98011-1713


My teaching philosophy can be broadly described as “Education for Thinking”. My goal is for students to not only examine what is currently known, but to also discover and dissect the theoretical and epistemological frameworks under which the alleged facts have been discovered. I believe it is important for students to view information within a framework of alternatives so that they can evaluate the strength of claims for themselves. To guide students towards this end, I engage students in actively understanding and critiquing presented knowledge, and in constructing new knowledge. In am continually aware of the diversity in people’s experiences, and therefore attempt to create a learning atmosphere where students with a variety of learning and assessment styles can benefit. My teaching consists of a variety of mediums, including lecture, small group discussion, debate, and group projects. Throughout all of these formats, I try to get students to connect what is being learned to their lives. It is my hope that students in my class not only leave with a broad understanding of the content being taught, but also of the ways in which social science affects the world in which we live.

Recent Courses Taught

BIS 220 Developmental Psychology
BIS 337 Risk and Resilience
BIS 343 Community Psychology
BIS 364 Realities and Representations of Adolescent Development
BIS 499 Portfolio Capstone


Much of my research has been dedicated to developing a developmentally appropriate and comprehensive approach to health promotion and risk prevention among adolescents. Specifically, my interest has focused on the factors that place adolescents at risk for a lifetime of health disparities. For the past several years, I have worked on identifying factors influencing sexual health risks among youth in the juvenile justice system. Ultimately, my goals are to a) understand both individual-level and structural factors influencing health risks among marginalized youth, b) incorporate these insights into effective interventions to promote health and wellness, and c) work toward ensuring that effective interventions are adopted and implemented by creating interventions that consider, respect and reflect the values of the various communities for which they are created.

Selected Publications

  • Jarrett, S., Udell, W., Sutherland, S., McFarland, W., Scott, M., & Skyers, N. (2018 e-pub ahead of print). Age of sexual initiation and subsequent sexual and health risk behaviors among Jamaican youth. AIDS and Behavior. DOI: 10.1007/s10461-018-2058-9
  • Udell, W., Hotton, A., Donenberg, G., & Emerson, E. (2017). Does parental monitoring moderate the impact of community violence exposure on probation youth’s substance use and sexual risk behavior. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(9), 2556-2563. DOI: 10.1007/s10826-017-0769-6
  • Udell, W., Mohammed, S., & Breland, D. (2017). Barriers to independently accessing care among detention youth. Journal of Adolescent Research, 32(4), 433-455. DOI: 10.1177/0743558416653219.
  • Walters, K., Simoni, J., Evans-Campbell, T., Udell, W., Johnson-Jennings, M., Pearson, C., MacDonald, M., Duran, B. (2016). Mentoring the mentors of underrepresented racial/ethnic minorities: Beyond cultural competency. AIDS and Behavior. 20 (Suppl 2), 288-203.
  • Udell, W., & Donenberg, D. (2015). Remembering the basics: African American Youth and HIV knowledge. Journal of the National Medical Association, 107 (3), 20-24.
  • Udell, W., & Donenberg, G. (2014). Parental discussion about sexual risk with African American sons: The role of religiosity. Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice, 7 (6), 121-129.
  • Udell, W., Donenberg, G., & Emerson, E. (2011). Parents matter in HIV-risk among probation youth. Journal of Family Psychology, 25 (5), 785-789.
  • Udell, W., Donenberg, G., & Emerson, E. (2011). The impact of mental health problems and religion on African-American girls’ HIV-risk. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 17, 217-224.
  • Udell, W., Sandfort, T., Reitz, E., Bos, H., & Dekovic, M. (2010). The relationship between early sexual debut and psychosocial outcomes: A longitudinal study of Dutch adolescents. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 39 (5), 1133-1145.