Judith A. Erlen

Professor Emeritus
Health & Community Systems


Dr. Judith Erlen has had a long history of funding from the NIH, as well as the Alzheimer’s Association, for her program of research that has focused on ethics, regimen adherence, and quality of life. Dr. Erlen has been recognized for her outstanding contributions to nursing research, having received the Distinguished Nursing Research award from the Eastern Nursing Research Society, as well as the Nightingale Award of Pennsylvania for Excellence in Nursing Research.

Her research has tested the effect of nurse delivered telephone and face-to-face interventions based on social cognitive and self-efficacy theories to improve adherence in persons with chronic disorders including individuals living with HIV infection who are prescribed combination antiretroviral therapy and type 2 diabetes. Dr. Erlen’s most recent work examined the effect of an in-home and telephone intervention on caregiver-mediated medication management when the patient has memory loss and lives in the community.

Dr. Erlen directed the NINR-funded T32 training grant, “Technology: Research in chronic and critical illness” for 10 years. She was the associate director of the School of Nursing’s NINR funded P30 grant, “Center for Research in Chronic Disorders”, and in that role, provided grant writing workshops for junior faculty and postdoctoral fellows. She also has been a visiting scholar at Michigan State University, the University of Connecticut, and West Virginia University.  Dr. Erlen’s teaching has focused on health care ethics, grant writing, manuscript development, and research. Her mentoring of PhD students, junior faculty, and postdoctoral fellows was recognized when she was named a recipient of the Provost’s Award for Excellence in Mentoring, University of Pittsburgh. She regularly facilitates ethics seminars for the third-year medical student clerkships.


Dr. Erlen is the elected Councilor at Large of the Council for the Advancement of Nursing Science and in that role serves on the Leadership Council of that organization and as the Program Committee Chair. She is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. She is a past president of the Eastern Nursing Research Society. She has served as the chair of the NINR Nursing Research Review Committee and chair of the NIH RFA Panel: Technologies for Healthy Independent Living. Her leadership has been recognized by the ENRS having been designated as an Outstanding Influential Leader.