Susan Bluck, Ph.D. (University of California, Irvine, 1997). Professor. Dr. Bluck’s research focuses on autobiographical memory and reasoning (how people remember and think about the events of their own lives) across the adult life span, and especially in later life. Her specific research interests include age differences and continuities in: (a) the everyday uses of autobiographical memory, reminiscence, and the life story, and (b) the relation of autobiographical memory to self-conceptions and well-being.

Natalie C. Ebner, Ph.D. (Free University of Berlin, 2005). Dr. Ebner’s research adopts an aging perspective on emotion, motivation, and social cognition and thus is at the intersection of developmental, social, and cognitive psychology. Her research program focuses on examining the extent to which emotional and self-relevant information affect attention, decision making, and memory, how these effects change across the adult lifespan, and what the consequences are for emotion regulation, health, and well-being. She conducts experimental research using a multi-methods approach that combines convergent measures, including self-report, behavior observation, eye tracking, hormonal markers, and neuroimaging techniques. Some of Dr. Ebner’s recent work is interventional with a specific orientation towards improvement of functioning in aging such as via medicinal products (e.g., oxytocin administration) and neurofeedback training.

M. Jeffrey Farrar, Ph.D. (Emory University, 1985). Professor. Dr. Farrar’s research is focused on language development from a cognitive linguistic perspective. Current studies are examining connections between social-cognitive development, such as theory of mind, and language development in both toddlers and preschoolers. A second area of research is memory development with a special emphasis on autobiographical memory development.

Julia A. Graber, Ph.D. (Pennsylvania State University, 1991). Professor. Dr. Graber’s research focuses on the transitional aspects of adolescence with particular interest in the entry into adolescence. Her research examines the development of psychopathology across the adolescent decade; the impact of pubertal timing on psychosocial functioning during adolescence and beyond; stress reactivity and psychosocial development in childhood and adolescence; and improving social competence among young adolescents.

Darlene A. Kertes, Ph.D. (University of Minnesota, 2005). Associate Professor, Area Director. Dr. Kertes focuses on the antecedents and consequences of stress in health and development. Her research examines the role of biologically-based child factors and parenting on activity of a stress-sensitive neuroendocrine system. Dr. Kertes further studies the genetic and gene-environment interaction effects on stress-related emotional and health outcomes from childhood through adulthood, including effects on depression and alcohol dependence.

Lisa Scott, Ph.D. (University of Minnesota, 2004). Professor. The overarching goal of Dr. Scott’s research is to better understand the processes underlying human learning. She is particularly interested in the importance of experience in shaping how we learn to recognize people (i.e., faces) and objects as well as how language and visual perception interact and result in conceptual learning. She utilizes behavioral measures, eye-tracking, and brain recordings (event-related potentials (ERPs) to better characterize how infants, children, and adults learn about the surrounding world. Dr. Scott’s work lies at the intersection of developmental psychology, adult cognitive psychology, social perception and cognitive neuroscience.

Faculty in Developmental Psychology
Dr. Lisa Scott, Dr. Natalie Ebner, Dr. Darlene Kertes, Dr. Susan Bluck, Dr. Jeffrey Farrar, Dr. Julia Graber


Affiliated Faculty lecturers

Marina A. Klimenko, Ph.D (University of Georgia, 2013). Lecturer. Dr. Klimenko teaches regularly Developmental Psychology, Research Methods lab, and Psychology and Public Policy.  Dr. Klimenko’s developmental research focuses on moral development and intersubjectivity.  In addition, Dr. Klimenko is interested in effects of media and video games.

Feihong Wang, Ph.D (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 2011). Lecturer. Dr Wang regularly teaches General Psychology, Abnormal Psychology and Developmental Psychology. Her research focuses on infant attachment, family processes, and school dynamics as they relate to the mental and behavioral health of children at risk, using diverse samples of children and advanced statistical modeling. Another line of her research examines how child and family factors influence children’s task engagement in challenging puzzle tasks, and how task engagement in early childhood predicts children’s academic and social outcomes during elementary school years.

Emeritus Faculty

W. Keith Berg, Ph.D. (University of Wisconsin, 1973). Professor. Dr. Berg’s primary research is on executive functioning processes, especially planning, problem solving, strategy use and working memory in childhood through later life. Brain, behavior and body processes related to executive functioning are assessed with psychophysiological measures including event related potentials, functional MRI, and heart rate changes as well as task performance.

Scott Miller, Ph.D. (University of Minnesota, 1971). Professor. Dr. Scott Miller’s research examines various aspects of children’s cognitive development. The most recent studies focus on developments that fall under the heading of theory of mind, including children’s understanding of false beliefs and the origins of knowledge.

Robin Lea West, Ph.D. (Vanderbilt University, 1980). Professor. Dr. West’s research focuses on practical aspects of memory and self-regulatory factors that affect memory. This includes: a) the relationship between test performance and self-evaluation of memory (especially self-efficacy), b) techniques for improving the everyday memory skills of older adults, and c) goal-setting and beliefs about memory.

Associate/Affiliate Faculty

Shari Ellis, Ph.D. (University of Utah, 1987). Affiliate Assistant Professor of Psychology. Development of mathematical and scientific reasoning; social and cultural influences on cognitive development; learning in school and informal settings.

Fonda Davis Eyler, Ph.D. (University of Florida, 1979). Professor of Pediatrics (Neonatology). Research on effects of perinatal as well as later risk and protective factors on long-term outcome, including the effects of prenatal cocaine exposure on cognitive/executive functioning and psychosocial development in a longitudinal cohort of children and adolescents.

Michael Marsiske, Ph.D. (Pennsylvania State University, 1992). Associate Professor of Clinical and Health Psychology. Cognitive aging, measurement of everyday/functional cognition in older adults, interventions to enhance elders’ cognitive performance; collaborative cognition; sensorimotor-cognition relations.


Current Graduate Students in Developmental Psychology (Graduate Advisor listed in parentheses)

Cheung, Zoe: Bilingualism; theory of mind, executive function, and language development (Farrar)

Daniels, Jaxene: Language and theory of mind development in childhood (Farrar)

Duan, Ke: Risk factors and protective factors of children’s internalizing and externalizing problems; impacts of parent-child relationship on adolescents’ development (Kertes)

Erhardt, Kaitlyn: Theory of mind and language development (Farrar)

Ferrell, Julia: Infant learning and development including face processing, perceptual learning, and early experience; Reciprocal relationships between perception and cognition in infancy and childhood (Scott)

Fisher, Daniel: Cumulative risk of poverty on the brain; impacts of childhood stress, trauma, social capital, community connectedness, and parent-child co-regulation on self-regulatory development (Kertes)

Horta, Marilyn: Age-related change in emotion processing, decision-making, and prosociality; Brain-behavioral effects of interventions in human aging, including intranasal oxytocin; fMRI functional connectivity (Dual specialization: DEV/BCN; Ebner)

Iyer, Arjun: Relationship between language, Theory of Mind, and moral development in children and adults (Farrar)

Liu, Peiwei: Intranasal oxytocin effects on human social and affective aging problem based on MRI technology including resting-state fMRI, structural MRI and real-time MRI (neurofeedback)(Dual specialization: Dev/BCN; Dr. Ebner)

Leri, John: Early life programming of the physiological stress system. Psychological stress, epigenetics; temperament. (Dual specialization: BCN/DEV; Kertes)

Mroz, Emily: Directive and social functions of autobiographical memory, memorializing; end of life issues and caregiving (Bluck)

Newland, Jamie: Perceptual narrowing, facial perception, the interaction of language and visual perception, and the effects of early book reading in infant development (Scott)

Polk, Becca: Social and emotional processing in the aging brain; the effects of oxytocin on mentalizing abilities (Dual specialization: DEV/BCN; Ebner)

Sharma, Shubam: Resilience in the face of late life challenges; life story approach to well-being in the second half of life (Bluck)

Sudo, Mioko: Theory of mind, executive function, and language development in childhood (Farrar)

Initial Job Placements of Developmental Psychology Ph.D Graduates

Montgomery, Derek: Assistant Professor, Bradley University, 1993

Forbes, James: Postdoctoral Fellow, Concordia University, 1993

Seier, Wendy: Assistant Professor, Georgia Southern University, 1993

Baron, Kristina: Assistant Professor, St. Michael College, 1994

Friend, Margaret: Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, Berkeley, 1994

Boyer, Michelle: Assistant Professor, Middle Tennessee State University, 1995

Holmes, Heather: Assistant Professor, Southeastern Louisiana State University, 1996

Mark McManis, Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University, 1996

Welch-Ross, Melissa: Assistant Professor, Georgia State University, 1996

Coyle, Tom: Assistant Professor, University of Texas, San Antonio, 1997

Garner, Elizabeth: Visiting Assistant Professor, University of North Florida, 1997

Fasig, Lauren: APA Policy Fellow, APA, Washington, D.C.,1998

Slawinski, Jennifer: NICHD Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Pittsburgh/Penn State & Adjunct Instructor Carnegie Mellon University, 1998

Welch, Duana: Assistant Professor, California State University, Fullerton 1998

Yassuda, Monica: Grant Project Manager, Georgia State University, 1999

Brown, Veda: Assistant Professor, Prairie View College, Texas, 2000

VanVoorhis, Frances: Network Facilitator and TIPS Coordinator, National Network of Partnership Schools, Johns Hopkins University, 2000

Sabatinelli, Dean: Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Florida, 2001

Abraham, Sara: Assistant Professor, St. Edward’s University

Alea, Nicole: Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina, Wilmington, 2004

Curry, Laura: Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute of Child Health Policy, University of Florida, 2004

Benigno, Joann: Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota, 2004

Byrd, Dana: Postdoctoral Fellow, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, 2004

Semegon, Angi: Clinical Research Coordinator, Gutstein Shelley and Associates, 2006

Maag, Lisa: Assistant Professor, East Carolina University, 2007

Lynne, Sarah: NIMH Postdoctoral Fellow, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 2008

McNamara, Joe: Fellow, Department of Psychiatry, University of Florida, 2008

Ahn, Sung-hee: On Leave, 2009

Dark-Freudeman, Alissa: Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, 2009

Sontag, Lisa: NRSA Research Fellow, Division of Adolescent Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, 2009

Tompkins, Virginia: Visiting Assistant Professor, Ohio State University at Lima, 2009

Cordell-McNulty, Kristi: (graduate of Co-Major program) Assistant Professor of Psychology, Angelo State University, 2009

Anderson, Kim: Study Coordinator with the Institute on Aging, University of Florida, 2010

Clemans, Katherine: NIMH Postdoctoral Fellow, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 2010

Demiray, Burcu: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Koc University, Istanbul, 2010

Marshik, Tesia: (graduate of Co-Major program) Assistant Professor of Psychology, University of Wisconsin La Crosse, 2010

DeLucca, Teri: Research Scientist, Nemours BrightStart Initiative, 2010.

Hastings, Erin: Clinical Trials Research Coordinator, The Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration, College of Medicine, University of Florida, 2011.

Baron, Jacqueline: Research Coordinator, Institute for Child Health Policy, University of Florida, 2011.

McKay-Easters, Molly: Adjunct Instructor, Florida State College at Jacksonville, 2013

Tamargo, Jennifer: Adjunct Research Associate, RAND Corporation, 2013

Hill, Julie: Assistant Professor of Psychology, University of Wisconsin Platteville, 2015

Diaz, Vanessa: Research Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech University, 2016

Mary Saczawa: Visiting Instructor, Gustavus Adolphus College, 2016

Aylin Tasdemir-Ozdes: Assistant Professor, Abant Izzet Baysal University, Turkey, 2017

Hsiao-wen Liao: Postdoctoral Fellow, Life-span Development Lab, Stanford University, California, 2017

Jingwen Liu: Research Analyst for T1DExchange, Boston, Mass., 2017

Tian Lin: Post-doctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology, University of Florida, 2017

Carla Strickland-Hughes: Assistant Professor, University of the Pacific, California, 2017

Guan, Yao: Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology and Brain Sciences, University of Iowa, 2018

Metz, Allison: Research Project Coordinator, Department of Family, Youth, and Community Sciences, IFAS/University of Florida, 2018

Désirée Lussier-Lévesque: Postdoctoral Fellow, SIMEXP Laboratory for Brain Stimulation and Exploration, Université de Montréal, Montréal,  Québec, 2019