Megan A. McVay, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Health Education & Behavior

  • PhD in Psychology, Louisiana State University (2012)
  • MA in Psychology, Louisiana State University (2012)
  • BA in Psychology, University of Puget Sound (2004)

McVay CV

Megan McVay Lab Website:


Megan McVay, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Education and Behavior. She completed her PhD in Psychology (Clinical and Biological areas) at Louisiana State University and completed her clinical internship and postdoctoral training at Duke University Medical Center and Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Dr. McVay conducts research on behavioral aspects of weight management, and is particularly interested in strategies to increase the reach of evidence-based approaches to weight loss. This focus stems from recognizing that the majority of adults with obesity do not initiate evidence-based weight loss treatments. To address this, she is focused on (1) developing and testing strategies that mobilize non-treatment seeking adults with obesity to enroll in empirically supported weight loss interventions and on (2) identifying or developing weight loss interventions (including preventive interventions) that are more likely to be initiated and sustained by adults with obesity. This work includes a focus on using digital health tools to address these and other aspects of weight management.

Dr. McVay is a member of several professional organizations including The Obesity Society (TOS) and Society of Behavior Medicine (SBM), where she previously served as chair of the Publication Council. She has received awards for research presentations from the Society of Behavior Medicine, The Obesity Society, and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. She has published in leading journals, including American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Annals of Internal Medicine, Genetics in Medicine, and Translational Behavioral Medicine. She has also been selected for competitive, specialized NIH-funded training institutes in mhealth and behavioral randomized clinical trials.

Research interest:

  • Behavioral weight management
  • Initiation and engagement in weight loss interventions
  • Digital health interventions for weight management


  • Perceived barriers and facilitators of initiation of behavioral weight loss interventions among adults with obesity: a qualitative study (Link)
  • A web-based intervention to increase weight loss treatment initiation: Results of a cluster randomized feasibility and acceptability trail (Link)
  • Dose-response research in digital health interventions: Concepts, considerations, and challenges (Link)