Naomi Aldrich

Naomi Aldrich

Assistant Professor 
B.A. Psychology, University of Tennessee
M.A. Experimental Psychology, City University of New York 
Ph.D. Developmental Psychology, City University of New York
Office: 2137 Au Sable Hall
Phone: 616-331-2419

Office Hours


Developmental Psychology


Courses Taught

PSY 301 - Child Development


Research Interests

My primary research focus is in the area of children’s social-cognition. Specifically, my current research interests lie at the intersection of children’s narrative development and their socio-cognitive understanding (i.e., emotion understanding and perspective-taking ability) with a focus on how children’s socio-cognitive understanding influences children’s discourse about interpersonal rivalry and the resultant aggressive behaviors of those feelings (i.e., bullying behaviors). My work in this area has thus far focused on children’s comprehension of—and ability to talk about—jealousy (a ubiquitous complex emotion that fundamentally concerns social competition and potential loss of an important relationship), and the role of perspective taking in this development during middle childhood (5 to 12 years).

Within the development of children’s social-cognition, I am also interested in social engagement and early communicative behaviors (i.e., gesture use, imitation) during infancy. In collaboration with others, I have examined the mediating effects of prematurity (i.e., intrauterine growth restriction, neurological damage) and partner preferences within twin siblings’ and their caregivers’ social interactions and communication over the first two years of life. 

Current Research

Children’s differential understanding of situations involving jealousy (i.e., where a person perceives that they are in danger of losing an important relationship) and envy (i.e., where a person wants to possess something that another has)

Maternal reminiscing speech as a predictor of the quality of children’s individual autobiographical narratives of jealousy experiences

Effects of Maternal Mind-Mindedness on children’s socio-cognitive understanding during middle childhood

Meta-analytic investigation of differences between the experiences and expressions of jealousy versus envy across the lifespan

Research Publications

Powers, K.L., Brooks, P.J., Aldrich, N.J., Palladino, M.A., & Alfieri, L. (2013, March). Effects of video-game play on information processing: A meta-analytic investigation. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review. Advanced online publication.

Aldrich, N.J., Tenenbaum, H.R., Brooks, P.J., Harrison, K., & Sines, J. (2011). Perspective taking in children’s narratives about jealousy. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 29 (1), 86-109.

Alfieri, L., Brooks, P.J., Aldrich, N.J., & Tenenbaum, H.R. (2011). Does discovery-based instruction enhance learning? Journal of Educational Psychology, 103 (1), 1-18.

Aldrich, N.J., & Tenenbaum, H.R. (2006). Sadness, anger, and frustration: Gendered patterns in early adolescents’ and their parents’ emotion talk. Sex Roles, 55, 775-785.

Tenenbaum, H.R., & Aldrich, N.J. (2006). Gender differences. In Encyclopedia of Human Development (Vol. 2, pp. 557-563). Thousand Oaks,