Stephen Ceci
Helen L. Carr Professor of Developmental Psychology

Web Bio Page

Current Activities

Current Professional Activities
My current professional activities include juggling three main lines of research, generating 23 new research publications during 2009. These three lines are:  children & the law (suggestibility, competence, deception), women and science (sex differences in math, mentoring, stereotypes), and intellectual development (world-wide cognitive trends, schooling, achievement gaps).  I serve on several national and international scientific advisory boards, and sit on 7 editorial boards of journals, co-direct a NIH-funded institute at Cornell CIWS), and supervise a large group of graduate students. 

Current Research Activities
Conducting multiple experiments on children's testimonial competence; co-writing a new book. I am completing two large-scale integrative reviews with colleagues.

Current Extension Activities
Preparing curriculum for  judges to assist them in assessing children's competence; deliver workshops for judges, mental health and law enforcement professionals across the U.S. and Canada; doing translational research for the legal community on child witness issues. Gave all-day presentations at  to judges and mental health professionals. I am involved in a multi-year project with the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education to a series of webinars for judges on child witness issues.


Biographical Statement
Currently, with Wendy Williams, I am in the throes of a major project examining sex differences in cognitive performance, which has culminated this year in one authored book,  two chapters, and a review article (with Wendy Williams and Susan Barnett). We also received four years of new funding from NIH to pursue research on this topic and create the Cornell Institute for Women in Science (CIWS).

I continue to develop my bio-ecological theory of intelligence, with a major analysis published this year of the role of intellectual competence in national outcomes (with H. Rindermann). My lab continued to publish our findings on ecological models of cognitive development, including ; children’s testimonial competence; the accuracy of children’s memory, culminating in a major new theory that was accepted for publication in Psychological Review. And I also continued to publish articles dealing with professional issues (e.g., IRBs, academic freedom, authorship issues). Concerning the latter, Wendy Williams and I have a large-scale national analysis of authorship issues that is currently in preparation for submission; we also have published a large experimental survey on academic freedom.

I am the author of over 350 articles, books, commentaries, reviews, and chapters—many in the premier journals of the field--and I have given hundreds of invited addresses and keynote speeches around the world (Harvard, Cambridge University, Oxford, Yale, Princeton, University of Rome, University of Oslo, Max Plank Institutes in Munich and Berlin).  I have served on the Advisory Board of the National Science Foundation for seven years (the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences), and was a member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Board of Behavioral and Sensory Sciences. My major honors and scientific awards include:
•    In 2000 the American Academy of Forensic Psychology's Lifetime Distinguished Contribution Award,
•    The American Psychological Association's 2002 Lifetime Distinguished Contribution Award for Science and Society, and its 2003 Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award for the Application of Psychology (shared with Elizabeth F. Loftus), and
•    In 2005 I received the Association for Psychological Science's highest scientific award, the James McKeen Cattell Award at its annual meeting in L.A.
I have appeared frequently in the national and international media, including: ABC's 20/20 (twice), NBC’s Dateline (twice), ABC’s Nightline, ABC’s Good Morning America, ABC’s Primetime Live (twice), PBS’s Frontline (twice), CBS’s 48 Hours, PBS’s McNeil-Lehrer NewsHour, BBC (three times), CBC's Fifth Estate, and numerous magazines and newspapers including the Wall Street Journal (twice), The New York Times (four times), The  New Yorker (three times), The Washington Post (three times), Time Magazine (twice), Newsweek (twice), The London Times, and Reader's Digest.  I am past president of the Society for General Psychology, and I serve on 7 editorial boards, including Scientific American Mind; I am a senior advisor to two journals.


Administrative Responsibilities
I edit the journal, Psychological Science in the Public Interest, published by the American Psychological Society. I co-direct the NIH center: Cornell Institute for Women in Science (CIWS). I lead a large lab (chair 7 doctoral students and numerous undergraduate research assistants.

children and the law, intelligence, life in the academy, women in science, sex differences, authorship, 

Courses, Websites, Pubs

Courses Taught

Related Websites

Selected Publications
Ceci, S. J. &  Williams, W.M.  (2010). The mathematics of sex: How biology and society conspite to limit talented women and girls.  NY: Oxford University Press.

Ceci, S. J., Williams, W.M., & Barnett, S.M. (2009). Women’s underrepresentation in science:  Sociocultural and biological considerations.  Psychological Bulletin, 135, 218-261.

Ceci, S.J., Papierno, P.B., & Kulkofsky, S.C. (2007). Representational constraints on children's suggestibility.  Psychological Science, 18, 503-509.

Ceci, S.J., Fitneva, S. A., & Williams, W. M. (in press). Representational Constraints on the Development of Memory and Metacognition: A Developmental-Representational-Theory. Psychological Review.

Ceci, S. J., Kahan, D. M. & Broman, D. (in press). The WEIRD Are Even Weirder Than You Think: Diversifying contexts is as important as diversifying samples.  Behavioral and Brain Sciences.

Ceci, S.J., Williams, W. M., & Mueller-Johnson, K. (2006). Is tenure justified? An experimental
study of faculty beliefs about tenure, promotion, and academic freedom . Behavioral & Brain Sciences, 29, 1-39.

Ceci, S.J. & Papierno, P.B. (2005). The rhetoric and reality of gap-closing: When the “have-nots” gain, but the “haves” gain even more. American Psychologist, 60, 149-160.

Rindermann, H. & Ceci, S. J. (2009). Educational policy and country outcomes in international cognitive competence studies. Perspectives in Psychological Science, 4, 551-577.

Ceci, S. J., Williams, W. M., & Barnett, S. M. (2009). The underrepresentation of women in science: Sociocultural and biological considerations. Psychological Bulletin, 135, 172-210.

Ceci, S. J. & Williams, W.M. (2009, Feb. 12). Commentary: Should scientists study race, gender, and IQ? Nature, 457, 788-789.

Brainerd, C. J., Reyna, V. F., & Ceci, S. J. (2008). Developmental Reversals in False Memory: A Review of Data and Theory.  Psychological Bulletin, 134, 334-375.

Brainerd, C., Reyna, V.F., Ceci, S.J., & Holliday, R.E. (2008). Developmental reversals in false memory: Reply to Ghetti (2008) and Howe (2008).  Psychological Bulletin, 134, xxx-xxx.

Ceci, S. J. & Williams, W. M. (Eds.) (2007). Why aren't more women  in science? Top researchers  debate the evidence. Washington, DC: APA Books.

Bruck, M. & Ceci, S. J. (2004). Forensic developmental psychology: Unveiling four common misconceptions.  Current Directions in Psychological Science, 13, 229-232.

Ceci, S.J. (2003). Lifetime Contribution Award: Cast in six ponds and you’ll reel in something: looking back on 25 years of research.  American Psychologist, 58(11).

Kanaya, T., Scullin, M. & Ceci, S. J. (2003). The Flynn Effect and U.S. Policies. The Impact of Rising IQ Scores on American Society.  American Psychologist, Vol. 58, No. 10, 778-790.

London, K., Bruck. M., Wright, D. B., & Ceci, S. J. (in press). Review of the contemporary literature on how children report sexual abuse to others: Findings, methodological issues, and implications for forensic interviewers.  Memory.

Kanaya, T. & Ceci, S. J. (2008). How much is one IQ point worth?  Perspectives in Child Development, 1, 62-63.

Kanaya, T. & Ceci, S. J. (2008).  Are All IQ Scores Created Equal? The Differential Costs of IQ Cutoff Scores for At-Risk Children.  Perspectives in Child Development, 1, 52-56.

Klemfuss, J.Z., Ceci, S.J., & Bruck, M. (in press). Normative Memory Development and the Child Witness. In Kuehnle, K. & M. Connell (Eds.), Child Sexual Abuse Allegations. NY: Wiley.

Barnett, S. M. & Ceci, S. J. (2002). When and Where do we apply what we learn? A taxonomy for far transfer.  Psychological Bulletin, Vol. 128(4), 612-637.

Ceci, S. J., Bruck, M., Kulkfsky, S. C., Klemfuss, J. Z., & Sweeney, C. (2008). Unwarranted Assumptions About Children’s Testimonial Accuracy.  Annual Review of Clinical Psychology.

Ceci, S. J. (1996). On Intelligence: A bio-ecological treatise on intellectual development. 2nd ed. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Ceci, S. J. & Konstantopoulos, S. (2009, Jan. 30). It’s not all about class size. The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Ceci, S. J. & Bruck, M. [1995]. Jeopardy in the courtroom: The scientific analysis of children’s testimony. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association. (Winner of the 2000 William James Book Award by APA)

Bronfenbrenner, U. & Ceci, S. J. (1994). Nature-nurture in developmental perspective: A bioecological theory.  Psychological Review, 101, 568-586.

Ceci, S. J., Loftus, E. F., Leichtman, M., & Bruck, M. (1994). The possible role of source misattributions in the creation of false beliefs among preschoolers.  International Journal of Clinical & Experimental Hypnosis. 42, 304-320.

Ceci, S. J. & Bruck, M. (1993). The suggestibility of children's recollections: An historical review and synthesis.  Psychological Bulletin, 113, 403-439.