Research Interests Former Students Publications


B.A.: University of Toronto
Ph.D.: Stanford University

Phone: (416) 978-7610
Fax: (416) 978-4811
Address: Department of Psychology
100 St. George St.
University of Toronto
Toronto, ON M5S 3G3
Lab Website:
Child Study Centre Web Site:



 Research Interests


In our lab my we study determinants of parenting and the impact of different kinds of parenting on children’s social and emotional outcomes. We want to know what makes parents effective in achieving their socialization goals. We are also interested in what makes some parents more effective than others at this task. Lack of knowledge about how to successfully help children learn to function well in society is one variable that determines parenting effectiveness. But there are other reasons for problematic parenting that are not so straightforward. Thus we are particularly interested in cognitions (both conscious and unconscious) and emotions that interfere with the ability of parents to apply their knowledge of how to raise children.


With respect to effective parenting, it is evident that this does not involve simply the application of specific strategies and techniques, or the adoption of specific styles of interaction. Outcomes for children depend on the interaction of parenting strategies and features of children (e.g., temperament, age, sex, mood). As well, children are operating in different domains relevant to socialization, that is, they are behaving in a given way for any number of reasons, and different parental responses are appropriate in different domains. For example, children could be acting badly because they are distressed and need comforting or because they lack knowledge and need information or because they are showing off and need to be ignored. My students and I are trying to identify the conditions that promote parents’ knowledge in these various areas and the successful application of that knowledge.

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 Former Students

Student Currently at...
Julia Vinik CAMH, University of Toronto
Megan Johnston University of Otago, Christchurch
Alisa Almas University of Maryland
Tsasha Awong Ryerson University
Leah Lundell Private Practice
Maayan Davidov Hebrew University
Norma D'Agostino Princess Margaret Hospital
Duane Rudy University of Missouri
Tanya Martini Brock University
Soula Homatidis CAMH, University of Toronto
Paul Hastings University of California at Davis
Rosemary Mills University of Manitoba
Theodore Dix University of Texas at Austin
Mary Konstantareas University of Guelph
Leon Kuczynski University of Guelph


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 Selected Publications

  Grusec, J.E., & Hastings, P.D. (Eds.) (2015). Handbook of Socialization. New York: Guilford Press (2nd edition).

Chaparro, M. P., & Grusec, J. E. (2014). Parent and Adolescent Intentions to Disclose and Links to Positive Social Behavior. Journal of Family Psychology. Early online publication, 15 December, 2014.

Grusec, J.E. (2014). Parent-child conversations from the perspective of socialization theory. In C. Wainryb and H. Recchia, (Eds.) Talking about right and wrong: Parent-child conversation as contexts for moral development. Cambridge University Press.

Grusec, J.E. (2014). The development of moral behavior and conscience from a socialization perspective. In M. Killen & J. Smetana (Eds.), Handbook of moral development. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum (2nd edition).

Johnston, M., Sherman, A., & Grusec, J.E. (2013). Predicting moral outrage and religiosity with an implicit measure of moral identity. Journal of Research in Personality, 47, 209-217.

Vinik, J., Johnston, M., Grusec, J.E., & Farrell, R. (2013). Understanding the learning of values using a domains-of-socialization framework. Journal of Moral Education, 42, 475-493.

Saritas, D., Grusec, J.E., & Gencoz, T. (2013). Warm and harsh parenting as mediators of the relation between maternal and adolescent emotion regulation. Journal of Adolescence, 36, 1093-1101.

Grusec, J.E., Chaparro, M.P., Johnston, M., & Sherman, A. (2012). Social development and social relationships in middle childhood. In R.M. Lerner, A. Easterbrooks, & J. Mistry (Eds.), Handbook of Psychology, Vol 6, Developmental Psychology, Wiley.

Almas, A., Grusec, J., & Tackett, J. (2011). Children's disclosure and secrecy: Links to parenting experiences and coping. Social Development, 20, 624-643.

Vinik, J. Almas, A., & Grusec, J.E. (2011). Maternal knowledge of what distresses and what comforts their children predicts children's coping, empathy and prosocial behavior. Parenting: Science and Practice, 11, 56-71.

Grusec, J. E., & Davidov, M. (2010). Integrating different perspectives on socialization theory and research: A domain-specific approach. Child Development, 81, 687-709.

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