Social Media and Adolescent Health Research Team: SMAHRT


As the Social Media and Adolescent Health Research Team, or SMAHRT, we strive to advance society’s understanding of the relationship between media and adolescent health. Our goals include embracing innovation, advancing knowledge and supporting trainees towards improving the health and well-being of teens. We prioritize incorporation of diverse voices and perspectives in every aspect of our work.


SMAHRT’s core areas of work include: 1) providing education to adolescents and families towards safe digital media use, 2) developing tools to assess digital media use and understand beneficial and problematic internet use, and 3) both testing and interpreting messages within social media to promote healthy behaviors.


  • An interdisciplinary approach with emphasis on using rigorous and ethical research practices
  • Collaboration with critical stakeholders including researchers, clinicians, educators, technology professionals, youth and community members in the development and translation of our research projects
  • Diversity among our trainees, team members, colleagues and participants including racial, cultural, religious, sex, gender, sexual orientation and ability status


The majority of SMAHRT’s work focuses on three research cores:

Technology use and misuse

  • The purpose of the technology use and misuse research core is to explore how technology use interacts with health outcomes relevant to adolescents and young adults, and to develop innovative methods for assessing technology use which can be used in research and clinical settings.
  • Projects within this SMAHRT research core focus on the measurement of technology use in general and measurements and analyses of Problematic Internet Use (PIU) in particular.

Online safety

  • The purpose of these projects is to investigate key issues in online safety, and to provide adolescents and their families with sound and relevant education on safe internet use in a meaningful and appealing manner. Towards this goal, we apply a transdisciplinary approach, which combines elements of public health, education, and consumer science.
  • Projects within this SMAHRT research core include education and prevention approaches to internet safety and research on cyberbullying.

Social media

  • Projects within this SMAHRT research core share the common goal of understanding displayed health behaviors on social media sites, and considering new ways to provide prevention and intervention programs using social media.

Lab News

  • Department of Pediatrics Researchers Shine During AAP NCE 2020

    Seventeen members of the Department of Pediatrics presented work at the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) National Conference & Exhibition (NCE), which took place virtually October 2-5, 2020.  The annual NCE is a forum for discussion …

  • What We Published In May 2020

    Al Dhaheri N, Wu N, Zhao S, Wu Z, Blank RD, Zhang J, Raggio C, Halanski M, Shen J, Noonan K, Qiu G, Nemeth B, Sund S, Dunwoodie SL, Chapman G, Glurich I, Steiner RD, Wohler …

  • Pediatrics Research Week 2020 Abstract Book Now Available

    The Pediatrics Research Week 2020 Abstract Book is now available. University of Wisconsin Department of Pediatrics faculty, staff, fellows and residents submitted over 50 research abstracts for the virtual conference, which is taking place May 26-29, 2020. …

  • What We Published in April 2020

    1. Ascierto PA, Fox B, Urba W, Anderson AC, Atkins MB, Borden EC, Brahmer J, Butterfield LH, Cesano A, Chen D, de Gruijl T, Dillman RO, Drake CG, Emens LA, Gajewski TF, Gulley JL, Stephen …

  • Save the Date: Virtual Pediatrics Research Week Begins 5/26/20

    In response to COVID-19, the Department of Pediatrics’ annual Research Week will offer alternative programming to spotlight the scholarly work from its residents, fellows, faculty and staff. Through a mix of livestreamed lectures and interactive …

  • More News...

Megan Moreno

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