Professor of Psychology
and Cognitive Science
My research has focused on understanding how pretend
play is involved in child development and in child psychotherapy.
I have worked with my students to develop a measure of pretend
play that assesses both cognitive and affective processes. We
have also carried out a number of studies that have investigated
the relationship between pretend play and areas of adaptive functioning
such as creativity, coping, and emotional understanding. In addition,
we have developed play intervention procedures to help children
improve their play skills. Next steps are to investigate play
and the facilitation of play in clinical populations. We are also
working on a brief behavior rating system that assesses play.
A broad question that I have also worked on and written about
is how affect is involved in the creative process.