Sally   Theran, Ph.D.

Sally Theran, Ph.D.

Wellesley College

Associate Professor of Psychology

Expertise: PsychologyDevelopmental PsychopathologyAbnormal Psychology

My research focuses on risk and resilience factors that protect against developmental psychopathology in childhood and adolescence, with a specific emphasis on gender issues. Within this broad rubric, my current area of research examines factors that put girls at risk for negative outcomes in adolescence. Specifically, I examined the construct of authenticity in relationships, which is a risk factor for developmental psychopathology, and may be manifested in subsequent psychopathology. However, authenticity in relationships can also be understood as a protective factor against developing psychopathology. My recent thesis students have examined authenticity in relationships as a risk factor for disordered eating, and early childhood trauma as a risk factor for lower levels of authenticity in relationships.

I teach a variety of courses, including Introduction to Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Child and Family Psychopathology, and Research Methods in Abnormal Psychology. I also supervise students who participate in our Psychology Department Practicum program; recently students have interned at Riverside Community Care and at Germaine Lawrence, among other sites. Our practicum program allows students to get intensive applied experiences in psychology.

I am a licensed clinical psychologist, and enjoy integrating material from my clinical work, teaching, and research.

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The Kryptonite of the “Superhero Ideal”

Sally A. Theran, associate professor of psychology at Wellesley College, has studied how young people can fight the depressive symptoms associated with the "superhero ideal" -- the pressure to be the best at everything they do -- by developing authentic and healthy relationships with peers, family members, and teachers.
11-Apr-2022 04:05:11 PM EDT

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