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Dr. Repacholi is a developmental psychologist and an Associate Professor in the UW Department of Psychology. She received a Master's degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Western Australia, and a Ph. D. from the University of California-Berkeley. She has a broad interest in children's early social-cognitive and social-emotional development. Her most recent research centers on infants' responsiveness to, and understanding of, other people's emotional states. She has also published research papers on topics including theory of mind, attachment, children's gender-typed beliefs and behavior, and the ontogeny of human disgust responses.
Ph.D., University of California-Berkeley
(Developmental Psychology, 1996)
Predoctoral Fellow, University of California-Berkeley, National Institute of Mental Health Training Grant in Emotion Research (1993-94)
Master of Clinical Psychology, University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia (1986)
Bachelor of Psychology, University of Western Australia (1984)
Associate Professor, 2007-present
University of Washington, Department of Psychology
Assistant Professor, 2002-2006
University of Washington, Department of Psychology
Research Associate, 2001-2002
University of Washington Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences, Seattle, WA
Lecturer (tenured), 1998-2001
Department of Psychology, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
Associate Lecturer, 1997
Department of Educational Psychology, Measurement & Technology, University of Sydney, Australia
Editorial Consultant, Child Development (1998, 1999)
Grant Proposal Reviewer, Australian universities and the Australian Research Council
Occasional Reviewer, Child Development, Developmental Psychology, British Journal of Developmental Psychology, Social Development, Developmental Science, Mind and Lanuage
Conference Organizer, in collaboration with Dr. V. Slaughter, international mini-conference on theory of mind and social functioning, Macquarie University, July, 2001, funded by the Macquarie Centre for Cognitive Sciences (MACCS)
Stevenson, R.J., Oaten, M.J., Case, T.I., REPACHOLI, B.M., & Wagland, P. (2010). Children’s response to adult disgust elicitors: Development and acquisition. Developmental Psychology, 46, 165-177.
REPACHOLI, B.M. (2009). Linking actions and emotions: Evidence from 15- and 18-month-old infants. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 27, 649-667.
REPACHOLI, B.M., Meltzoff, A.N., & Olsen, B. (2008). Infants’ understanding of the link between visual perception and emotion: “If she can’t see me doing it, she won’t get angry”. Developmental Psychology, 44, 561-574.
Toub, T., & REPACHOLI, B.M. (2007). Infants’ response to indirect emotional information: the role of the emotional referent. Published abstracts of the 5th biennial meeting of the Cognitive Development Society, Santa Fe, USA, October.
REPACHOLI, B.M., & Meltzoff, A.N. (2007). Emotional eavesdropping: Infants selectively respond to indirect emotional signals. Child Development, 78, 503-521.
Case, T.I., REPACHOLI, B.M., & Stevenson, R.J. (2006). My baby doesn’t smell as bad as yours: The plasticity of disgust. Evolution and Human Behavior, 27, 357-365.
Stevenson, R., & REPACHOLI, B. (2005). Does the source of an interpersonal odour affect disgust? A disease risk model and its alternatives. European Journal of Social Psychology, 35, 375-401.
Stevenson, R., & Repacholi, B. (2005). Does the source of an interpersonal odour affect disgust? A disease risk mdel and it's alternatives. European Journal of Social Psychology, 35, 375-401.
Repacholi, B., & Trapolini, T. (2004). Attahment and preschool children's understanding of maternal versus non-maternal psychological states. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 22, 395-416.
Stevenson, R., & Repacholi, B. (2003). Age-related changes in children's hedonic response to male body odor. Developmental Psychology, 39, 670-679.
Repacholi, B., & Slaughter, V. (Eds.). (2003). Individual differences in theory of mind: Implications for typical and atypical development. Hove, UK: Psychology Press.
Repacholi, B., Slaughter, V., Pritchard, M., & Gibbs, V. (2003). Theory of mind, Machiavellianism, and social functioning in childhood (pp. 67-98). In B. Repacholi & V. Slaughter (Eds.) Individual differences in theory of mind: Implications for typical and atypical development. Hove, UK: Psychology Press.
Slaughter, V., & Repacholi, B. (2003). Individual differences in theory of mind: what are we investigating? (pp. 1-12). In B. Repacholi & V. Slaughter (Eds.) Individual differences in theory of mind: Implications for typical and atypical development. Hove, UK: Psychology Press.
Pickering, S., & Repacholi, B. (2002). Modifying children's gender-typed musical instrument preferences: The effects of gender and age. Sex Roles, 45, 623-643.
Meltzoff, A., Gopnik, A., & Repacholi, B. (1999). Toddlers' understanding of intentions, desires and emotions: Explorations of the dark ages. In P. Zelazo, J. Astington, & D. Olson (Eds.), Developing theories of intention: Social understanding and self-control (pp. 17-41). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Repacholi, B. M. (1998). Infants' use of attentional cues to identify the referent of another person's emotional expression. Developmental Psychology, 34, 1017-1025.
Repacholi, B. M., & Gopnik, A. (1997). Early reasoning about desires: Evidence from 14- and 18-month-olds. Developmental Psychology, 33, 12-21.
Watson, J. S., Umansky, R., Marcy, S., Johnston, C., & Repacholi, B. (1996). Behavioral competition in a case of Rett syndrome. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 17, 553-575.
Watson, J. S., Umansky, R., Marcy, S., & Repacholi, B. (1996). Intention and preference in a 3-year-old girl with Rett Syndrome. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 17, 69-84.
Lyons-Ruth, K., Alpern, L., & Repacholi, B. (1993). Disorganized infant attachment classification and maternal psychosocial problems as predictors of hostile-aggressive behavior in the preschool classroom. Child Development, 64, 572-585.
Lyons-Ruth, K., Repacholi, B., McLeod, S., & Silva, E. (1991). Disorganized attachment behavior in infancy: Short-term stability, maternal and infant correlates and risk-related sub-types. Development and Psychopathology, 3, 207-266.
The Baby Human (2003). Discovery Health Channel.
Media coverage in 2002 regarding publication about children's gender-typed musical insturment preferences: Reuters Health, BBC World Service, National Public Radio (KUOW - local affiliate), The Sunday Times, Sunday Telegraph (both UK) and Child magazine.
Life matters. (2000, May 2). Washington, DC: National Public Radio [Radio broadcast].
Kiddy thinks. (2000, February 3-9). Guardian Weekly, p. 24.
Baby steps. Do our first three years of life determine how we'll turn out? (2000, January 10). The New Yorker, pp. 80-87.
Go on then, have the broccoli if you must. (1997, February 22). New Scientist, p. 18.
Repacholi, B., & Meltzoff, A. N. Other people's perceptual and emotional states influence infant imitation. Symposium presentation at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Atlanta, USA, April.
Repacholi, B., & Meltzoff, A. N. The effect of attentional and indirect emotional cues on infants' actions. Poster presentation at a mini-conference on New Approaches to Infant Learning and Cognition, Duke University, USA, May.
Repacholi, B., & Trapolini, T. Individual differences in preschool children's social understanding. Paper presented at the XI European Conference on Developmental Psychology, Milan, Italy, August.
Repacholi, B. (2002, August). Infants' use of emotional signals to regulate object-directed behavior. Symposium on Affective and Linguistic Meaning from infancy through early childhood conducted at the biennial meeting of the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Development, Ottawa, Canada.
Repacholi, B., & Slaughter, V. (2002, April). Autistic children's responses to other people's emotional signals. Paper presented at the International Conference on Infant Studies, Toronto, Canada.
Repacholi, B., & Slaughter, V. (2001, July). Theory of mind, Machiavellianism, and peer relationships in childhood. Paper presented at the Macquarie Centre for Cognitive Science (MACCS) workshop: Mind-reading and behaviour: Individual differences in theory of mind and implications for social functioning, Sydney, Australia.
Repacholi, B. (2001, April). Do emotional signals influence infant imitation? Poster session presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Minneapolis, MN.
Repacholi, B. (2000, November). Can infants learn anything from emotional signals? Lecture presented as part of the Social-Developmental Seminar Series, Department of Psychology, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.
Slaughter, V., & Repacholi, B. (2000, July). Autistic children's understanding of emotion. Invited talk given at the Institute of Psychiatry, University College, London, England.
Repacholi, B. (1999, August). Infants' responses to other people's emotional expressions: Mindful or mindless? Invited talk given at the Australian Research Council workshop: Empathy, ethics and emotion. The Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.
Cuming, S., & Repacholi, B. (1999, July). Is there a link between children's peer relationships and their theory of mind? Poster session presented at the 11th Australasian Human Development Association Conference, Sydney, Australia.
Pickering, S., & Repacholi, B. (1999, April). The effects of musician gender on children's musical instrument preferences. Poster session presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Albuquerque, NM.
Repacholi, B. (1999, January). The emergence of joint attention and social referencing: Developmental precursors to a theory of mind? Invited talk given at the Cognitive Science Colloquia, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.
Pickering, S. & Repacholi, B. M. (1997, December). The effect of gender role models on children's musical instrument preferences. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Australian Association for Research in Education, Brisbane, Australia.
Repacholi, B. (1997, October). Beyond social referencing: New insights into emotion understanding in late infancy. Invited talk given at the Department of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.
Repacholi, B. M. (1997, April). Infants' understanding of the referential nature of emotions. Poster session presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Washington, D.C.
Repacholi, B. M. (1995, June). Components of children's early emotion understanding. Poster session presented at the annual workshop of the National Institute of Mental Health Postdoctoral Training Program on Emotion Research, Berkeley, CA.
Repacholi, B. M. (1995, April). Understanding the link between emotions and desires: Evidence from 18-month-old children. Poster session presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Indianapolis, IN.
Lyons-Ruth, K., Repacholi, B., Alpern, L., & Connell, D. (1991, April). Disorganized attachment behavior in infancy: Short-term stability, maternal correlates and the prediction of aggression in kindergarten. Symposium conducted at the Biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, WA.
Betty Repacholi heads the Social and Emotional Development Lab (SEDL). SEDL research is concerned with infants' responses to other people's emotional signals and determining what they understand about these communications. In addition, Dr. Repacholi’s research interests include the relationship between theory of mind and children's social functioning; the effects of early social experience (e.g., attachment) on children's social-cognitive and emotional development; and the ontogeny of human disgust responses.
Ashley is a doctoral student in Developmental Psychology working under the direction of Dr. Betty Repacholi. Ashley first discovered infant research in a language development lab at Duke University. Her honors thesis was an interdisciplinary project that examined how infants learned labels for emotional expressions. This challenging, yet fun, study prompted Ashley to continue research as a lab manager before joining I-LABS in 2014. The primary goal of Ashley’s graduate research is to bridge gaps between the affective science and developmental psychology literatures. Currently, she is examining how emotion processing develops throughout infancy and how factors such as perception, cognition, and language influence this process.
Former Lab Members
Theresa Hennings is a graduate student in Dr. Betty Repacholi’s Social and Emotional Development Lab. Theresa received her Bachelor’s in Psychology from Lewis & Clark College, where she worked as a research assistant in a study looking at preschoolers’ understanding of other people’s emotions. After college, she continued child development research in a language and cognition lab at Stanford University. Now at UW, Theresa is working with Repacholi to examine how infants’ understanding of other people’s emotions influences their behavior, social interactions, and trait attributions.
Berit Olsen is a graduate student supervised by Dr. Betty Repacholi in the Social and Emotional Development Lab. Berit received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Religion from Pacific Lutheran University. After graduating, she spent a year in Norway studying the Norwegian paternity leave system on a Fulbright Grant. Her interests center on emotional development in very young children. Currently, Berit and Repacholi are collaborating with Andrew Meltzoff in a study examining children's understanding of the emotional content of adult's behavior and how that affects their imitative learning.
Ms. Scott graduated from the University of Washington in 2011, with a bachelor’s degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences. As a research assistant and lab manager for Dr. Betty Repacholi’s Social and Emotional Development Lab she is currently helping with research that centers on infants' responsiveness to, and understanding of, other people's emotional states. She is also part of the I-LABS staff as a Program Assistant, helping the Assistant Director, Ms. Stevens with day-to-day operations as well as managing the front desk.
Tamara Spiewak Toub
Tamara Spiewak Toub is a doctoral candidate working with Dr. Repacholi in the Social and Emotional Development Lab. Tamara has been pursuing two lines of research while in graduate school. The first line of work focuses on infants' understanding of other people's emotions and how these emotions influence infants' behavior. In her second line of work, Tamara is examining possible developmental benefits of pretend play. Her dissertation research examines the relation between pretend play and executive function (e.g., self-control) in preschoolers. More generally, Tamara's interests include early peer and family relationships, the influences of those relationships on children's social and emotional development, and ways in which developmental psychology research can inform parents, educators, and policy-makers in their work with children. Prior to coming to I-LABS, Tamara earned her Bachelor's degree in Psychology at Harvard University, and then worked in NYC as a research assistant.