Jessica Dym Bartlett conducts applied research with infants, young children, their parents, and the prevention and intervention programs with which they interact (e.g., home visiting, early care and education, child welfare, mental health, primary care). Specifically, her interest is in the mental health, well-being, and care of young children who experience or who are at risk for experiencing trauma and adversity, with a focus on identifying individual, family, and contextual factors that contribute to resilience and the prevention of poor life outcomes. She has been interviewed and quoted by U.S. News & World Report, U.S.A. Today, The Economist, The Christian Science Monitor, and Teen Vogue, among other publications, and her research has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals.
Dr. Bartlett oversees Child Trends’ Massachusetts office and is co-director of the early childhood program area. She has strong expertise in a range of research and evaluation methodologies, including randomized controlled trials, mixed method studies, parent-child observational studies, participatory action research, and analysis of large administrative datasets. Her current work includes serving as principal investigator on a 15-state longitudinal randomized controlled trial (RCT) study of resilience to child abuse and neglect in Early Head Start, as well as an RCT examining the effects of the Newborn Behavioral Observations on parent-child relationships and parental mental health at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. In addition, Dr. Bartlett is the lead evaluator for the Child Trauma Training Center at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and serves as the co-chair of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Child Traumatic Stress Network Evaluation Community of Practice. She also provides evaluation technical assistance and consulting to policymakers, programs, and federal grantees, with a focus on supporting populations facing multiple adversities, including Native American and Alaskan Native communities.
Dr. Bartlett also has a broad applied background, having worked for over a decade as a child and family psychotherapist, infant and early childhood mental health consultant, Early Intervention educator, and adoption placement worker for abused and neglected children. She completed her undergraduate (BA), Master’s (MA), and Doctorate (PhD) degrees in child study and human development at Tufts University, as well as a Master’s degree in Social Work (MSW) from Simmons School of Social Work.