Heidi Adams Rueda, Ph.D.

Title Assistant Professor

Phone Number 210-458-2309

Email heidi.rueda@utsa.edu

Room FS 4.408

Department Social Work;


Dr. Heidi Adams Rueda research focuses on adolescent dating and sexual relationships within ecodevelopmental contexts, particularly among understudied youth populations. Within a holistic approach to dating health, her work aims to prevent teen dating violence and to foster strong foundations for healthy adolescent and lifelong partnering. She utilizes mixed methods to inform the design and evaluation of effective preventative interventions and social work practice with adolescents. She graduated as a Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work and with her Masters in Social Work degree from Arizona State University. Her Bachelors of Art degrees in Spanish and Psychology are from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Dr. Rueda is a consulting editor of the journal Children & Schools, and holds a number of professional memberships including of the Society of Research on Adolescence where she will serve as a co-organizer of the 2016 pre-conference on Romantic Relationships.

Dr. Rueda is currently involved in a number of collaborative research projects:

  1. The Partnering Project for Pregnant and Parenting Teens. This community based participatory research seeks to understand the unique risks and resiliencies associated with relationship violence among pregnant and parenting youth in residential foster care.
  2. Sexual Health Needs and Experiences of Children and Adolescents with Disabilities. This project has sought social workers’ experiences in serving youth with disabilities using in-depth interview methods. Dr. Rueda is writing chapters on these topics as part of a book contract through NASW Press.
  3. MSW Students’ Knowledge of Teen Dating Violence. Graduating students’ experiences and knowledge concerning service provision to adolescents having experienced dating violence were assessed via online surveys at two universities.
  4. The Mexico and San Antonio Health and Dating Study. Focus group and survey methodologies were utilized to assess the health and dating lives of adolescents in San Antonio and Morelia, Mexico for this comparative study.

She may be reached at Heidi.Rueda@utsa.edu.

Research Interests

Adolescent dating and sexuality; domestic abuse and teen dating violence; minority and at-risk youth populations (e.g., Latino youth, adolescents with disabilities); the design and evaluation of developmentally- and culturally-grounded preventative interventions; teen pregnancy prevention and healthy relationships programming with pregnant and parenting teens


Ph.D. 2013, Arizona State University

M.S.W. 2007, Arizona State University

B.A., Spanish, Psychology 2004, University of Nebraska-Omaha