Alexander T. Vazsonyi
Professor of Family Sciences, Professor of Psychology, Professor of Sociology

Professional Profile

Dr. Vazsonyi’s research focuses on child and adolescent development; more specifically, it examines the etiology of child and adolescent adjustment (achievement, problem behaviors, health-compromising behaviors, violence, and deviance). He is interested in socialization processes, ranging from family contextual experiences to larger cultural processes in understanding variability in adolescent development and adjustment. Following this line of research, he has published over 120 peer reviewed publications, book chapters, conference proceedings, editorials, and technical reports. He serves as the senior editor of the Cambridge Handbook of Violent Behavior and Aggression (2018) (see for more details about his work).

Dr. Vazsonyi serves as the Editor-In-Chief of the Journal of Early Adolescence and as a member of a number of editorial boards (e.g., Journal of Youth and Adolescence; Journal of Criminal Justice). He has served and continues to serve on a number of national and international review panels, both for grant reviews as well as professional conferences. Dr. Vazsonyi was honored for exceptional achievements by his alma mater, The University of Arizona, both in 2008 and in 2017. He was a Fulbright fellow in 2003 at The University of Maribor in Maribor, Slovenia, and in 2010, he was the inaugural recipient of the prestigious Fulbright-Masaryk Distinguished Chair in Social Studies at the Institute for Research on Children, Youth, and Family in the Psychology Department at Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. In 2014, he was invited as a Senior Scholar for the 2014 EARA-SRA (European Association for Research on Adolescence and the Society for Research on Adolescence) Summer School in the Netherlands, sponsored by the Jacobs Foundation, a forum that brings together leading researchers and scholars with the most promising doctoral students from around the globe. In 2017, he was invited to chair the Society for Research and Adolescence Thornburg Dissertation Award Committee. And in 2019, he received the Fulbright-Palacky Distinguished Chair award to spend a semester in Olomouc, Czech Republic.

In addition to classroom teaching, Dr. Vazsonyi identifies mentoring both undergraduate and particularly graduate students as one of the most important and rewarding things he does. Over the past two decades, he has chaired about twenty Ph.D. students, many of which hold postdocs or tenure-track positions at major universities as well as over a dozen M.S. students. 


Ph.D.,Family Studies & Human Development, University of Arizona, 1995
M.S., Family Studies & Human Development, University of Arizona, 1993
B.S., Biopsychology, Grand Valley State University, 1989