Developmental Psychology Concentration

Concentration in developmental psychology at SFSU focuses on growth and development across the lifespan. It is designed for students with major interests in areas of social and emotional development, parent-child relationships, sex differences, development across cultures and ethnic minority groups, learning, cognition, and psycholinguistics. 

                                                                                       Developmental Psychology Faculty Advisors

Faculty Advisor

Contact Information


Cookston, Jeff
Joined SF State in 2002

Ph.D., University of Texas, Austin, 2000

Office: EP 503B
Office Hours: Fall 2023, 9-11am in EP 503B and by appointment

Phone: (415) 405-2132
Web: Family Interaction Research lab

Psychology Department Graduate Coordinator
Social Construction of Family
Marital/Family Conflict Divorce

Karras, Juliana
Assistant Professor
Joined SF State in 2020

Ph.D., City University of New York, 2018


Office Hours: Fall 2024, by appointment with link below
Schedule appointment
Phone: (415) 405-3417

Brown Bag Coordinator
Inequality and Social Development
Civic Engagement
Children’s Rights
Ethnic-Racial Identity
Immigrant-Origin Children and Youth

Paik, Jae
Joined SF State in 2006

Ph.D., Indiana University, 2004

Office: EP 305
Office Hours: Thursdays 8:30-10:30am & by appointment
Zoom Link
Phone: (415) 405-0577
Web: Learning and Developmental Lab

Developmental Concentration Coordinator
Social and Emotional Learning
Cognitive Development
Service Learning in Psychology
Culture and Development

Also, learn more about faculty members affiliated with the developmental concentration here!


Recent Research By Developmental Psychology Faculty

Dr. Karras recently collaborated in a youth participatory action research (yPAR) project to develop, implement and evaluate using migration narratives as a discrete intervention for promoting inclusive school climates for immigrant-origin students. Qualitative findings from this project will be published in a special issue of Cultural Diversity & Ethnic Minority Psychology regarding ‘Collaborative and Participatory Research to Promote Engagement, Empowerment, and Resilience for Immigrant and Refugee Youth, Families, and Communities’.

Cross-cultural patterns in mathematic and verbal skill acquisition among young children

Dr. Jae Paik has recently led and collaborated with her international colleagues from Netherlands, Peru, and Taiwan examining cross-cultural differences in the math abilities of preschoolers.  In another line of research, Dr. Paik examined the effects of contexts and comparison processes on U.S. and Korean 2- and 3-year-olds' verb acquisition.

Intervention programs that reduce conflict among divorced parents 

Dr. Jeffrey Cookston recently published an article in Family Court Review providing evidence that after participation in a divorcing parent education curriculum parents reported less conflict, anxiety, and depression. These results are important as they represent only the second time that a psychoeducational intervention program reduced conflict between parents after divorce. Incidentally, Dr. Cookston was also the lead author on that paper published in Family Processes.

2023 cohorts
Dev. Orientation 2022