Profile page for: Heather Sears | UNB

Heather Sears

Professor

PhD

Psychology

Keirstead Hall 217

Fredericton

hsears@unb.ca
1 506 458 7122



My research focuses on various aspects of adolescents' development. My primary interest is adolescents' help-seeking behavior, particularly how adolescents' gender and individual and relational characteristics combine to predict this behaviour, and how parents, siblings, and peers socialize adolescents to use help seeking to manage problems. I am also interested in families with adolescents, particularly how parents and youths work through normative events (e.g., talking about sexual health) and non-normative events (e.g., a parent's illness with cancer).

Education

  • BSc (Hons), Acadia University;
  • MA & PhD, University of Victoria;
  • Licensed Psychologist, New Brunswick

Selected publications

Sears, H.A. (2020, online first). Adolescents' first choice for help: Distinguishing characteristics of youth who select a friend, a parent, or no one. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. doi: 10.1007/s10964-020-01241-x

Sears, H.A., Robinson, B.S., & Byers, E.S. (2020). Young adolescents' responsiveness to sexual communication with their mother: Distinguishing diverse intentions. Journal of Adolescence, 80, 136-144.

Byers, E.S., Sears, H.A., & Hughes, K. (2018). Predicting mother-adolescent sexual communication using the integrative model of behavioral prediction. Journal of Family Issues, 39, 1213-1235.

Sears, H.A., & McAfee, S.M. (2017). Seeking help from a female friend: Adolescent girls' competencies, friendship features, and intentions. Personal Relationships, 24, 336-349.

Presentations

Sears, H.A., & MacIntyre, L.J. (2019, June). Adolescent girls' and boys' help-seeking intentions: Conformity to masculine and feminine gender norms transcends gender. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Psychological Association, Halifax, NS.

Halamay, T., & Sears, H. (2018, May). The contributions of parent-adolescent relationship features to adolescents seeking help from each parent. Poster presented at Development 2018 - A Canadian Conference on Developmental Psychology, St. Catharines, ON.

Halamay, T., & Sears, H.A. (2017, September). Factors distinguishing how actively adolescents seek help from their father and mother. Poster presented at the European Conference on Developmental Psychology, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Sears, H.A., & Halamay, T. (2017, August). Adolescents who choose no one, a friend, or a parent for help. Poster presented at the European Conference on Developmental Psychology, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Sears, H.A., & Halamay, T. (2017, June). Predictors of adolescents' reluctance to seek help from others. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Psychological Association, Toronto, ON.

Teaching

  • Undergraduate courses: Adolescent Development, Child and Adolescent Psychopathology, Social Development
  • Graduate courses: Lifespan Psychopathology; Clinical and Developmental Issues in Families