Psychology Today
Cover of January 2021 issue
Editor in ChiefKaja Perina
PublisherJohn Thomas[1]
Total circulation250,000[2]
Year founded1967; 54 years ago (1967)
CompanySussex Publishers
CountryUnited States
Based inNew York City

Psychology Today is a media organization with a focus on psychology and human behavior. The Psychology Today website features therapy and health professionals directories[2] and hundreds of blogs written by a wide variety of psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, medical doctors, anthropologists, sociologists, and science journalists. Psychology Today also publishes a bimonthly magazine, which first appeared in 1967.

Online presence and magazine circulation

Psychology Today is among the oldest media outlets with a focus on behavioral science. Its tagline is “Here to Help”[3] and its mission is to cover all aspects of human behavior so as to help people better manage their own health and wellness, adjust their mindset, and manage a range of mental health and relationship concerns.

Psychology Today content and its therapist directory are found in 20 countries worldwide.[4] Psychology Today's therapist directory is the most widely used[5] and allows users to sort therapists by location, insurance, types of therapy, price, and other characteristics. It also has a Spanish-language website.[6]

The print magazine's circulation is 250,000, with 15.02 readers per copy, totaling an audience of 3.75 million.[2]

Psychology Today has a social media presence with 7.5 million Facebook followers, nearly 900,000 Twitter followers, more than 550,000 Instagram followers, and more than 600,000 LinkedIn followers as of November, 2021.

History and mission

Founded in 1967[7] by Nicolas Charney, Ph.D., to make the burgeoning psychology literature accessible to the general public, Psychology Today features reportage and information that looks inward at the workings of the brain as well as outward to the bonds between people. It draws on research reports and interviews with experts on topics ranging from human motivation to personality development, from intelligence to child development and parenting practices, from schizophrenia to sexuality, from leadership to addiction, from anxiety to politics—the vast range of the human behavior, with coverage of animal behavior as well.

With articles on groupthink by Irving Janis, Ph.D., learned helplessness by Martin Seligman, Ph.D., and management by Peter Drucker, Psychology Today earned a wide readership among professionals and the public. Psychologist Abraham Maslow described his ideas on peak experiences and self-actualization in Psychology Today. Other articles explored biofeedback, brain imaging, body language, and the halo effect of beauty.[8]

The magazine was among the bestselling general interest periodicals on the market: In 1976 Psychology Today sold 1,026,872 copies.[7] The circulation of the magazine was 1,171,362 copies in 1981 and 862,193 copies in 1986.[7]

In 1992, after several changes in ownership and a publishing hiatus of two years, Psychology Today resumed publication as a general magazine, adding distinguished science journalism to cover a rapidly expanding field of human knowledge. Culturally relevant articles on bullying, bias, and behavioral economics join the now-famous Hare checklist of psychopathy and portraits of perfectionism. The magazine has won numerous awards from the Society of Publication Designers.[9] The current editor-in-chief is Kaja Perina. The Creative Director is Edward Levine.

From June 2010 to June 2011, it was one of the top ten consumer magazines by newsstand sales.[10] In 2013 Adweek noted a 36 percent increase in the number of readers of Psychology Today, while many magazines suffered readership declines.[11]

The Psychology Today website, in addition to archiving magazine articles since 1992, features a continuous stream of blogs by laboratory researchers, clinical practitioners, and writers with a broad range of expertise. Daily reports of the findings of new research on human behavior accompany accounts of common concerns and explorations of the impact of current events on mental health. The website is also the primary portal to a comprehensive directory of psychologists, psychiatrists, and other mental health professionals in the U.S. and around the world. The New York Times recommends this therapist finder when considering the costs involved in seeking therapy.[12]


From 1983 to 1987, Psychology Today was owned and managed by the American Psychological Association.[13] It is currently owned by Sussex Publishers and endorsed by the National Board for Certified Counselors, which promotes subscriptions and offers professional credit for a small fee and assigned assessment for each article read.[14]

Content and standards

The magazine is not peer-reviewed. Independent review of articles can help ensure content is factual, trustworthy, and scientifically valid.[15] Likewise, much of the editorial team lack formal training in the behavioral sciences (e.g. editor-in-chief Kaja Perina). However, many of Psychology Today's contributors are experts in their fields who hold advanced degrees.[16]

A 2013 content analysis of both Dr. Phil and Psychology Today reported that approximately 56% of articles in the latter outlet highlighted a specific mental health disorder.[17] Psychology Today mentioned major depressive disorder (26.7% of items) and generalized anxiety disorder (10% of articles) the most in these articles.

Some articles by Psychology Today bloggers have promoted the idea that ADHD does not exist.[18][19] These articles highlight that ADHD may be overdiagnosed in the North American population[20] and debate regarding the classification of mental disorders as a whole.[21][22] Some authors have argued that, although they may work for some, stimulants can be addictive.[23] Thus they support non-pharmacological therapies as the best or only way to treat ADHD. Although there may be an association between ADHD and substance use disorder (SUD), correlational relationships do not indicate that ADHD or treatment leads to SUD. Moreover, there is a belief that the relationship may be a form of self-medication.[24] When individuals take medications to treat their ADHD as prescribed, they are not at greater risk for SUD.[25][26][27]



  1. ^ "About Psychology Today". Psychology Today. John Thomas. Retrieved 15 November 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "Advertising Media Kit" (PDF). Psychology Today. Retrieved 3 February 2021.
  3. ^ "About Psychology Today | Psychology Today". Retrieved 2021-03-22.
  4. ^ "Find a Therapist, Psychologist, Counselor - Psychology Today". Retrieved 2021-02-09.
  5. ^ "How to find a therapist who is right for you". Los Angeles Times. 2020-12-23. Retrieved 2021-03-22.
  6. ^ "Psychology Today en español - España: salud, ayuda, felicidad + encuentra un psicólogo". (in Spanish). Retrieved 2021-03-04.
  7. ^ a b c Bruce V. Lewenstein (1987). "Was There Really a Popular Science" Boom"?". Science, Technology, & Human Values. 12 (2): 29–41. doi:10.1177/016224398701200204. hdl:1813/13731. S2CID 141385150. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
  8. ^ "25 Big Ideas That Began Here". Psychology Today. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  9. ^ "SPD Gold & Silver Medal Winners". Society of Publication Designers. Retrieved 2021-11-08.
  10. ^ Ives, Nat (9 August 2011). "Top 10 Consumer Magazines by Single Copy Sales (chart)". AdAge.
  11. ^ Bazilian, Emma (29 May 2013). "Magazine Readership Growing, Survey Shows Digital readership up more than 80% in past year". Adweek.
  12. ^ "The Online Therapy Services We'd Use". The New York Times. Retrieved 2021-11-08.
  13. ^ Dougherty, Phillip H. (February 23, 1983). "Advertising: Psychology Today Sale To Group Completed". The New York Times.
  14. ^ "Certification Benefits". NCC Service Center. National Board for Certified Counselors and Affiliates, Inc. Retrieved 27 February 2014.
  15. ^ Kelly, Jacalyn; Sadeghieh, Tara; Adeli, Khosrow (October 2014). "Peer Review in Scientific Publications: Benefits, Critiques, & A Survival Guide". EJIFCC. 25 (3): 227–243. ISSN 1650-3414. PMC 4975196. PMID 27683470.
  16. ^ "Meet Our Contributors | Psychology Today". Retrieved 2021-03-02.
  17. ^ Rasmussen, Eric; Ewoldsen, David R. (May 2013). "Dr. Phil and Psychology Today as Self-Help Treatments of Mental Illness: A Content Analysis of Popular Psychology Programming". Journal of Health Communication. 18 (5): 610–623. doi:10.1080/10810730.2012.743630. ISSN 1081-0730. PMID 23402283. S2CID 29241316.
  18. ^ "No, There Is No Such Thing as ADHD". Psychology Today. Retrieved 2021-02-28.
  19. ^ "ADHD Does Not Exist". Psychology Today. Retrieved 2021-02-28.
  20. ^ Paris, Joel; Bhat, Venkat; Thombs, Brett (July 2015). "Is Adult Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Being Overdiagnosed?". The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. 60 (7): 324–328. doi:10.1177/070674371506000705. ISSN 0706-7437. PMC 4500182. PMID 26175391.
  21. ^ Khoury, Bassam; Langer, Ellen J.; Pagnini, Francesco (2014-06-17). "The DSM: mindful science or mindless power? A critical review". Frontiers in Psychology. 5: 602. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00602. ISSN 1664-1078. PMC 4060802. PMID 24987385.
  22. ^ Sorboro, John (2010). "Prognosis Negative" (PDF). Skeptic. 15 (3): 44–49.
  23. ^ "ADHD Does Not Exist Part 2". Psychology Today. Retrieved 2021-02-28.
  24. ^ Zulauf, Courtney A.; Sprich, Susan E.; Safren, Steven A.; Wilens, Timothy E. (March 2014). "The Complicated Relationship Between Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Substance Use Disorders". Current Psychiatry Reports. 16 (3): 436. doi:10.1007/s11920-013-0436-6. ISSN 1523-3812. PMC 4414493. PMID 24526271.
  25. ^ Chang, Zheng; Lichtenstein, Paul; Halldner, Linda; D'Onofrio, Brian; Serlachius, Eva; Fazel, Seena; Långström, Niklas; Larsson, Henrik (August 2014). "Stimulant ADHD medication and risk for substance abuse". Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 55 (8): 878–885. doi:10.1111/jcpp.12164. PMC 4147667. PMID 25158998.
  26. ^ Wilens, T. E.; Faraone, S. V.; Biederman, J.; Gunawardene, S. (2003-01-01). "Does Stimulant Therapy of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Beget Later Substance Abuse? A Meta-analytic Review of the Literature". Pediatrics. 111 (1): 179–185. doi:10.1542/peds.111.1.179. ISSN 0031-4005. PMID 12509574. S2CID 29956425.
  27. ^ Quinn, Patrick D.; Chang, Zheng; Hur, Kwan; Gibbons, Robert D.; Lahey, Benjamin B.; Rickert, Martin E.; Sjölander, Arvid; Lichtenstein, Paul; Larsson, Henrik; D’Onofrio, Brian M. (September 2017). "ADHD Medication and Substance-Related Problems". American Journal of Psychiatry. 174 (9): 877–885. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2017.16060686. ISSN 0002-953X. PMC 5581231. PMID 28659039.
  28. ^ Contact

Further reading