Amanda  Howard
Associate Professor of Psychology
Howard College of Arts and Sciences
Psychology Department
Office: 211 Ingalls Hall
Email: ahoward6@samford.edu
Phone: 205-726-2118

Amanda Hiles Howard specializes in developmental science, action research, and social psychology.  Her scholarly work focuses on understanding the effects of adversity on vulnerable children and their families and  improving the quality of practice being provided by the communities, organizations, and governments that serve them.   Her most recent research includes a multi-national study that examines the factors leading to resilience in adults who spent time in alternative care during childhood (i.e. foster care, orphanages, etc.).  Hiles Howard is deeply committed to translating research to on-the-ground practice. To this end, she has done extensive speaking about care reform and improving public policy both nationally and internationally.  Some of her major engagements include addressing Australian Parliament and meeting with the Prime Minister, speaking at the internationally simulcasted Empower to Connect Conference, and training professionals and government officials in multiple states and countries.  She is also the Senior Scholar for the Christian Alliance for Orphans, where she helps support faith-based organizations in providing the best care for at-risk children around the world. When she is not working, Hiles Howard enjoys camping and hiking with her husband, John, and their sons, Elias and Silas. 

Degrees and Certifications

• B.A., The Ohio State University
• M.S., Texas Christian University
• Ph.D., Texas Christian University

Research

• Developmental Psychology
• Action Research
• Systems Change
• Adversity
• Resilience

Recent Publications

  • Domoff, S., Borgen, A., Wilke, N., & Howard, A.R.H. (2021). Adverse Childhood Experiences and Problematic Media Use in High-Risk Youth. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(3), 6725. Doi: 3390/ijerph18136725

  • Howard, A.R.H., Roberts, M., Gustafson, J., & Wilke, N. (2021). The Best Intentions: An Examination of Current Practices in Short-Term International Service Trips Intended to Benefit Vulnerable Children and Youth, Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment.  Doi: 1080/10911359.2020.1866732

  • Copeland, R.J., Howard, A.R.H., & Razuri, E.B. (2021). Understanding the Impact of Childhood Adversity on Social Work Students. Journal of Social Work Education, 57(2), 398-404 Doi: 1080/10437797.2019.1671262

  • Wilke, N.G. & Howard, A.R.H. (2021). Data-Informed Recommendations for Faith Communities Desiring to Support Vulnerable Children and Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic, Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Social Work, 1-16. Doi: 1080/15426432.2021.1895957

  • Wilke, N.G., Howard, A.R.H., & Goldman, P.  (2020). Rapid Return of Children in Residential Care to Family as a Result of COVID-19: Scope, Challenges, and Recommendations, Child Abuse and Neglect, 110, 104712. Doi: 1016/j.chiabu.2020.104712

  • Wilke, N.G., Howard, A.R.H., & Pop, D. (2020). Data-Informed Recommendations for Service Providers Working with Vulnerable Children and Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic, Child Abuse and Neglect, 110, 104642. Doi: 1016/j.chiabu.2020.104642

  • Copeland, R., Howard, R.H., Stearns, L. & Call, C. (2020). Investigating the Relationship Between Number of Years of Service in Child Welfare and Attachment Classification in a Sample of Child Welfare Professionals.  Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 30, 621–634. Doi: 10.1080/10911359.2020.1732256

  • Wilke, N., Howard, R.H., Morgan, M., & Hardin, M. (2020). Adverse Childhood Experiences and Problematic Media Use: The Roles of Attachment and Impulsivity.  Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies, 15, 1-12. Doi: 10.1080/17450128.2020.1734706

  • Wilke, N., Pop, D., Oswald, E., Morgan, M., & Howard, R.H. (2020). Moving Toward Family Solutions: An Introduction to An Immersive Simulation Experience. Institutionalised Children: Explorations and Beyond (ICEB): An International Journal on Alternative Care, 7(1), 21-28. Doi: 10.1177/2349300319894499

  • Howard, R.H., Lynch, A., Call, C.D., & Cross, D. (2020). Sensory processing in children with a history of maltreatment: an occupational therapy perspective. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies, 15(1), 60-67. Doi: 10.1080/17450128.2019.1687963

  • Zeanah, C. H., Wilke, N. G., Shauffer, C., Rochat, T., Howard, A.R.H., & Dozier, M. (2019). Misguided altruism: the risks of orphanage volunteering. The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health, 3(9), 592. Doi: 1016/S2352-4642(19)30213-5

  • Call, C.D., Razuri, E.B., Howard, A.R.H., DeLuna, J.H., Ito-Jaeger, S., & Cross, D.R. (2019). More than words: computerized text analysis of child welfare professionals’ Adult Attachment Interviews. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 29, 1-15. Doi: 1080/10911359.2019.1617819

  • Howard, A.R.H., Dandy, K., Martino, M., Howard, J.D., & Cross, D.R. (2019). An Evaluation of the Psychometric Properties of the Attachment Behavior Checklist. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 52(3), 171-190. Doi: 1080/07481756.2019.1595815

  • Cross, D., Call, C., Howard, A., & Lynch, A. (2019). Sensory Processing in Children With a History of Maltreatment. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 73(4_Supplement_1), 7311505163p1-7311505163p1. DOI: 5014/ajot.2019.73S1-PO6012

  • Howard, R.H., Lindaman, S., Copeland, R., & Cross, D.R. (2018). Theraplay impact on parents and children with autism spectrum disorder: Improvements in affect, joint attention, and social cooperation. International Journal of Play Therapy, 27, I56-68. Doi: 10.1037/pla0000056

  • Howard, R.H., Razuri, E., Copeland, R., Call, C.D., Nunez, M., & Cross, D. (2017) The role of attachment classification on disclosure of self and rater-reported adverse childhood experiences in a sample of child welfare professionals. Children and Youth Services Review, 83, 131-136. Doi: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2017.10.041

  • Ito-Jaeger, S., Howard, R.H., Purvis, K.B., & Cross, D. (2017).  Attention focus and self-touch in toddlers: The moderating effect of attachment security. Infant Behavior and Development, 48, 114-123.  Doi: 10.1016/j.infbeh.2017.05.001

  • Razuri, E., Howard, R.H., Purvis, K.S., & Cross, D.R. (2017). Mental state language development: The longitudinal roles of attachment and maternal language. Infant Mental Health Journal, 38 (3), 329-342. Doi: 10.1002/imhj.21638

  • Howard, R.H., Razuri, E.B., Call, C., DeLuna, J.R., Purvis, K.B., & Cross, D.R. (2017).  Family drawings as attachment representations in a sample of post-institutionalized adopted children. The Arts in Psychotherapy, 52, 63-71. Doi: 10.1016/j.aip.2016.09.003

Book Chapters 

  • Purvis, K.S., Howard, R.H., & Call, C.D. (2017). Trust-Based Relational Intervention. In K. Buckwalter and D. Reed (Eds.), Attachment Theory In Action: Building Connections Between Children and Parents (143-156). Washington, D.C.: Roman and Littlefield.