Developmental Psychology (PhD)

Department Website

Program Description

The PhD program in Developmental Psychology emphasizes intersections among biology, culture, and context in developmental processes across areas of social, cognitive, language, and emotional development. Students apply a variety of methods (e.g., experimental, quasi-experimental, survey, observational, semi-structured interviews) to the study of individual and environmental influences on the development of infants, preschoolers, children, and adolescents at multiple, nested levels. Students take classes in developmental content areas and analytic methods and research, and advanced seminars on theories of change and theories of culture.

Students engage in community and/or laboratory-based research for the entire length of their studies under the supervision of primary and secondary faculty mentors. Research is conducted in laboratories at New York University and the homes, daycares, schools, hospitals, neighborhoods, and community settings of the multi-ethnic and richly diverse city of New York. Additionally, international research is a cornerstone of the program, with faculty and students engaged in studying developmental processes and contextual influences across countries such as China, India, South Africa, Korea, and Peru, and with affiliated global faculty at NYU Shanghai and NYU Abu Dhabi campuses.


Admission to graduate programs in the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development requires the following minimum components:

  • Résumé/CV
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Transcripts
  • Proficiency in English

See NYU Steinhardt's Graduate Admissions website for additional information on school-wide admission. Some programs may require additional components for admissions.

See How to Apply for admission requirements and instructions specific to this program.