Ph.D. Learning, Cognition, and Development

Learning, Cognition, and Development

The specialization in Learning, Cognition, and Development prepares scholars to carry out research in a broad range of areas related to cognition, teacher and student learning, human development, and teaching practice. The aim is to conduct research that fosters understanding of learning and development of diverse populations, in a range of settings, across the lifespan.

Students in this specialization may examine topics such as learner motivation, individual differences in learning, child and adolescent development, learning and teaching in both P-20 school and out-of-school settings, cognitive processes in the content areas (e.g., mathematics, literacy), and teacher development and learning. To investigate these issues, research may focus on learning, cognition, and development of the individual, of different groups of individuals, or of groups as a collective, with attention to how context influences learning and development. To this end, students in the specialization will have the opportunity to develop expertise in a wide range of research methodologies, including analysis of large-scale data sets, randomized experiments, program evaluation, design research, discourse analysis, case studies, video and classroom-based research, and longitudinal studies.

Applicants typically have prior course work or experience in psychology, cognitive science, educational psychology, human development, social sciences, STEM fields, classroom teaching, or educational leadership. Graduates in this area seek academic positions or research appointments in a wide range of fields and departments, as well as non-academic positions in non-profit organizations, government agencies, and consulting firms.


Ph.D. Faculty in Learning, Cognition, and Development

School of Education Faculty

  • Penelope Collins - Cognition and Learning, Linguistic Diversity, Reading, Phonological Processing, Learning Disabilities
  • AnneMarie Conley - Motivation, Adolescent Development, Person-Centered Approaches to Studying Change
  • Jacquelynne Eccles - Academic Motivation and Achievement, School and Family Influences on Adolescent Development, Gender and Ethnicity in STEM Fields
  • Susanne Jaeggi - Cognitive Training Interventions, Working Memory and Cognitive Functions Across the Lifespan
  • Hosun Kang - Beginning Teacher Development in the Sciences, Formative Assessment and Learning from Students, URM Female Identity in the Sciences
  • Joseph Mahoney - Child/Adolescent Social Development, Out-of-school Time, Social/Educational Intervention and Policy
  • Stephanie Reich - Socio-emotional Development, Parent-child Interactions, Peer Networks
  • Judith Haymore Sandholtz - Teacher Professional Development, Teacher Education, School-University Partnerships
  • Rossella Santagata - Mathematics Education, Video and Multimedia in Teacher Learning, Culture and Learning
  • Tesha Sengupta-Irving - Mathematics Education, Classroom-based Reforms, Inequities in Schools and Communities, Teachers as Change Agents
  • Elizabeth van Es - Teacher Cognition, Professional Development, Learning Communities
  • Deborah Lowe Vandell - Developmental Processes and Educational Outcomes, Longitudinal Research Methods, Early Childhood Education, After-school Programs, Teacher-Child Relationships
  • Mark Warschauer - Digital Learning, Language and Literacy, STEM, Learning Analytics

Affiliated Faculty

  • Thomas Carew - Cellular and Molecular Mechanisam of Memory
  • Elizabeth Cauffman - Adolescent Development, Mental Health, Juvenile Justice
  • Chuansheng Chen - Cross-cultural Adolescent Development, Neural Bases of Language, Mathematical Learning
  • Wendy Goldberg - Family Context of Child Development, Parent School Involvement
  • Brad Hughes - Science Education, Environmental Public Health, Coastal Ecology, Ecotourism, Teacher Training
  • Virginia Mann - Phonological Awareness, Reading, Reading Readiness Intervention