Our Mission

The Center for Research on Culture, Education, and Development (CRCDE) at New York University is a research center and training site dedicated to the study of developmental processes, context, and culture in children and families from diverse cultural and economic backgrounds. The Center was founded in 2002 with support from the National Science Foundation, and continues to receive funding from various sources (mainly NSF) for continued research on children’s developmental transitions in cultural context. The activities of the Center are organized around two large, complementary projects: studies on early childhood (from infancy through age 6 years) and studies on middle childhood and adolescence (from middle school through high school). These two projects are directed by leading scholars in developmental and community psychology, who provide expertise across contexts, developmental stages, and research methodologies. Dozens of undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students have participted in the work of the CRCDE and have gone on to pursue further graduate training and recognized careers in psychology and related fields. Center members have published highly acclaimed work on infant and pre-schoolers’ learning, language, cognitive development, social competence, and emotion and self regulation; children and adolescents’ school performance, academic achievement, peer relations, and concepts of self; the roles of families, schools, peers, media, workplace, social policies, and culture on the developmental trajectories of young children and youth. This research and related outreach efforts are conducted in continued collaboration and partnerships with hospitals, school systems, and community agencies throughout New York City and beyond.

Scientific Mission

To accomplish this mission we seek to examine:

  1. trajectories of children's social, emotional, and cognitive development, particularly as children undergo major developmental and social transitions, such as the onset of language and literacy, starting of school, and entry into middle- and high-school
  2. children's experiences in home and school settings, and intersections among different experiences in the two settings
  3. the ways in which home and school settings jointly and interactively influence children's social, emotional, and cognitive development

For each aim, we explore ethnic and gender differences in children's developmental trajectories, home and school experiences, and the intersections between these, with a focus on the ways in which beliefs and practices within cultural communities shape these processes.


Educational Mission

The educational mission of the Center is to transmit research findings, through training and dissemination, to three communities:

  • A new generation of scholars from diverse backgrounds who are engaged in research on culture and its role in child learning, engagement, and performance.
  • The broader research community.
  • Policy makers and practitioners in education (including school administrators and teachers).