NAME CHANGE: Please note that we recently changed our division name from Child Development to Developmental Sciences to better reflect who we are and what we do.  As we work to update the website, you may see these names used interchangeably for a few weeks. Please be patient as we make the changes.  Thank you!


Developmental Sciences faculty and students are brought together by a deep interest in children and their development. Our faculty and students design research using empirical methodologies that are situated within the natural, actual settings in which children live their lives. From the early childhood years of preschool to the transitions of adolescence, Developmental Sciences faculty and students investigate core aspects of youth: language development in their verbal and signed manifestations; the impact of teachers as shepherds of developmental growth; the acquisition (or not) of academic motivation; bullying and peer harassment; the growth of cognitive and mathematical skills, identity formation with respect to gender, race, and ethnicity; the creation of small yet structured societies of youth; peer influence and social networks; the disruptive functions of aggressive and antisocial behavior; the positive connectedness of friendship and cooperation. Our faculty and students have diverse interests, but we share a commitment to improving children’s experiences with education through a creative and rigorous application of psychological theory and research.

Who should apply

Graduate level students who want to:

  • Study social and academic developmental and contextual influences on children and adolescents; investigate core aspects of development.
  • Investigate young students’ learning of mathematical concepts along with supports to teachers to aid in their students’ learning of mathematical concepts.
  • Examine ways in which the online space circumvents hurdles faced by students underrepresented in STEM as they navigate introductory online STEM college courses.
  • Examine psychological and physiological connections between emotion and learning.
  • Conduct cutting-edge empirical research based on a strong theoretical foundation.
  • Explore the personal, family, community, and educational predictors and outcomes associated with Positive Youth Development.
  • Improve children’s experiences with education through a creative and rigorous application of psychological theory and research.

Programs Offered