Deborah Best

Deborah Best

Email:  best at
William L. Poteat Professor of Psychology
(336) 758-5748
Greene Hall 471

Research Interests & Relevant Publications

My first research interest is in the development of gender stereotypes among young children in the United States and other countries. Studies have looked at the impact of stereotypes on adult behaviors and interactions (e.g., gender and occupations, compliance with exercise regimes, peer interactions). Current research is looking at children’s conceptions of gender and the effects of everyday activities on their concepts.

My second research interest is cognitive development during the preschool and school-age years, focusing upon age-related changes in memory strategies and knowledge base (semantic memory). Recent studies have examined applied aspects of memory, children’s misattributions about memory, their understanding of forgetting, and the effects of memory training.

Some Relevant Publications:

  • Best, D.L. (2010, in press). The Contributions of the Whitings to the Study of the Socialization of Gender. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, Special Issue, The contributions of Beatrice and John Whiting to the cross-cultural study of children and adolescents. (C.P. Edwards & T.S. Weisner, Eds.).
  • Smith, P.B., & Best, D.L. (Eds.). (2009). Cross-Cultural Psychology. Four Volume Set, Sage Benchmarks in Psychology Series. London: Sage Publications, Ltd.
  • Best, D.L. (2009). Another view of the gender-status relation. Sex Roles, 61, 341-351.
  • Best, D.L., & Thomas, J. J. (2004). Cultural diversity and cross-cultural perspectives. In A. H. Eagly, A. E. Beall, & R.J. Sternberg (Eds.), The psychology of gender (2nd ed., pp. 296-327). New York: Guilford Publications.
  • Best, D.L. (2004). Varieties of college and university experience. In J.M. Darley, M.P. Zanna, & H.L. Roediger III (Eds.), The compleat academic: A career guide (2nd ed., pp. 345-359). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
  • R.B. Howse, D.L. Best, E.R. Stone. (2003). Children’s decision making: the effects of training, reinforcement, and memory aids. Cognitive Development, 18, 247-268.
  • Guajardo, N.R., & Best, D.L. (2000). Do preschoolers remember what to do? Incentive and external cues in prospective memory. Cognitive Development, 15, 75-97.
  • Intons-Peterson, M.J., & Best, D.L. (Eds..). (1998). Memory distortions and their prevention. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
  • Best, D.L., Davis, S.W., Vaz, R.M., & Kaiser, M. (1996). Testicular cancer education: A comparison of teaching methods. American Journal of Health Behavior, 20(4), 229-241.
  • Best, D.L., Hamlett, K.W., & Davis, S.W. (1992). Memory compliant and memory performance in the elderly: The effects of memory-skills training and expectancy change. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 6, 405-416.

Curriculum Vitae

Courses Taught

  • Developmental Psychology
  • Graduate Seminar in Developmental Psychology
  • Cross-Cultural Psychology
  • Honors Seminar

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