Yalda T. Uhls, MBA, Ph.D.
Yalda T Uhls, MBA, PhD, author and award winning child psychologist and researcher, spent over 15 years as a senior film executive at studios such as MGM and Sony, and then earned a PhD in psychology. Her expertise on how media content are created, along with the science of how media affect children, informs her unique perspective.
Yalda’s research, conducted with UCLA’s Children’s Digital Media Center, focuses on how traditional and newer media impact the social behavior of preadolescents. Her findings were featured in Time Magazine, the NY Times, USA Today, NPR and others, and cited in scholarly publications. In 2015, the 83 year old national organization of leading experts in child development, the Society for Research in Child Development, gave Yalda’s graduate school research its highest honor: Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation.
Yalda works with schools, companies and non-profits at the intersection of positive youth development, entertainment media and scientific research; she is passionate about translating science into useful knowledge and takeaways. Dr. Uhls has been invited to share her knowledge with the White House, Pixar, the NFL, Google, public school districts, Harvard Business School and others. She is frequently called upon to offer her expertise to many media outlets, including print, radio and TV and she strives not to give into the agenda of any “side” in the discussion, and instead speak to the facts while recognizing the perspective of all stakeholders (industry, parents, academics).
Yalda teaches at both the high school and college level. Her parenting book Media Moms and Digital Dads: A Fact not Fear Approach to Parenting in the Digital Age hit the bestseller list for Amazon new releases and Book Soup and is used as a textbook in college level psychology courses. She assists the national non-profit Common Sense Media on entertainment outreach and consults on children’s content such as Dot, awarded best new animated series at the KidScreen awards in 2017.
As the American-born child of Iranian immigrants, Yalda cares passionately about diversity and inclusion and looks to educate youth and adults about myriad ways that explicit and implicit biases affect development. Having benefited from the University of California system - her BA is from UCB, and her MBA and PhD are from UCLA - she believes in the value of public school education and works to pay it forward as an adjunct professor at UCLA and a tutor for homeless children at the non-profit School on Wheels. Most importantly, she is the mom of two digital teens, a boy and a girl.