Kristen Fay

Kristen Fay Poston

Research Scientist, NIOST

Ph.D. and M.A., Tufts University, B.A., Wellesley College
kfay@wellesley[dot]edu
Link to CV

Research interests include youth and adolescent development with a focus on physical activity, healthy eating, and out-of-school time.


Kristen Fay Poston, Ph.D. is a research scientist at the National Institute of Out-of-School Time (NIOST), and a visiting lecturer in the psychology department at Wellesley College where she teaches courses in adolescent and adult psychology. Her research has focused primarily on identifying and describing the individual and contextual factors that influence developmental trajectories of positive psychological and physical health among adolescents, most specifically with regard to weight regulation and perception, dietary habits, eating attitudes and behaviors, and patterns of physical activity. She uses an interdisciplinary approach that integrates psychological theories with nutrition science, education, public health, and psychiatric perspectives. Methodologically, Poston has worked with a variety of longitudinal and cross-sectional data sets.

Education

Poston earned her bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Wellesley College and earned her Master’s degree and doctorate in applied child development from Tufts University.

Background

Prior to joining NIOST, Poston held research appointments at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University and at the Massachusetts General Hospital Eating Disorders Clinical and Research Program in Boston. She has also taught courses in adolescent psychology at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education.

Selected Publications

  • Hall, G., Fay, K., & Dennehy, J. (in press). Summer learning programs: Investigating strengths and challenges. Advances in Child and Family Policy and Practice: Special Issue on After-School Programs to support Positive Youth Development.
  • Fay, K. & Lerner, R.M. (2013). Weighing in on the issue: A longitudinal analysis of the influence of selected individual factors and the sports context on the developmental trajectories of eating pathology among adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 42, 33-55.
  • Becker, A.E., Fay, K., Agnew-Blais, J., Khan, A.N., Striegel-Moore, R.H., & Gilman, S. (2011). Mass media exposures and increased risk for adolescent eating pathology in Fiji. British Journal of Psychiatry, 198, 43-50.
  • Fay, K., Economos, C., Lerner, R.M., Becker, A.E., & Sacheck, J. (2011). The association between sports participation and athletic identity with eating pathology among college-aged males and females. Eating and Weight Disorders, 16, 102-112.
  • Lerner, R.M., Leonard, K., Fay, K., & Isaac, S. (2011). Continuity and discontinuity in development across the life span: A developmental systems perspective. In K. Fingerman, Cynthia Berg, T. Antonucci,and J. Smith (Eds.), Handbook of Lifespan Development (pp.141-160). New York: Springer.
  • Lerner, R.M., Leonard, K., Fay, K., & Isaac, S. (2011). Continuity and discontinuity in development across the life span: A developmental systems perspective. In K. Fingerman, Cynthia Berg, T. Antonucci,and J. Smith (Eds.), Handbook of Lifespan Development (pp.141-160). New York: Springer.
  • Becker, A.E., Fay, K., Agnew-Blais, J., Guarnaccia, P., Striegel-Moore, R.M. & Gilman, S. (2010). Development of a measure of “acculturation” for ethnic Fijians: Methodologic and conceptual considerations for application to eating disorders research. Transcultural Psychiatry, 47(5), 754-788.
  • Lewin-Bizan, S., Doyle Lynch, A., Fay, K., Schmid, K., Lerner, J.V., McPherran, C., & Lerner, R.M.(2010). Trajectories of positive and negative behaviors from early- to middle-adolescence. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39, 751-763.
  • Zarrett, N., Fay, K., Caranno, J., Li, Y., Phelps, E., Lerner, R.M. (2009). More than child’s play: Variable- and pattern-centered approaches for examining effects of sports participation on youth development. Developmental Psychology, 45(2), 368-382.
  • Lerner, R.M., Brittian, A., & Fay, K. (2008). Mentoring: A Key Resource for Promoting Positive Youth Development. Research in Action, Issue 1, 3-15.