Faculty and Staff Profiles

Professor, Psychology
Email: rcohen@memphis.edu
Office Location: 340 Psychology Bldg
Office Hours:

Educational Background

Ph. D. in Psychology, Miami University, Oxford, OH, December 1975.
M. A. in Psychology, Miami University, Oxford, OH, June 1972.
B. A. in Psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, June 1970.

Teaching and Research Interests

My interests are in the general area of children’s social development including the following:

  • Culture and child development
  • Aggression and victimization
  • Sociometric Status and friendship relationships
  • The role of respect in children's peer relations
  • Contextual analysis of social development
  • Family and peer relations

Additional Information


  • Dunavant Faculty Professorship, Awarded for Exceptional Achievement in Teaching, Scholarship, Service, and Outreach - University of Memphis - 2015
  • Department of Psychology - Graduate Programs Coordinator - 2006 -
Journal Articles
  • Cohen, R., & Siegel, A. W. (1991). A context for context: Toward an analysis of context and development. In R. Cohen & A. W. Siegel (Eds.), Context and development (pp. 3-23). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Cohen, R., Summerville, M. B., Poag, C. K., & Henggeler, S. W. (1991). A contextual analysis of popularity in the classroom. In R. Cohen & A. W. Siegel (Eds.), Context and development (pp. 161-182). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Siegel, A. W., & Cohen, R. (1991). Why a house is not a home: Constructing contexts for development. In R. Cohen, & A. W. Siegel (Eds.), Context and development (pp. 305-316). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • MacDonald, C. D., & Cohen, R. (1995). Children's awareness of which peers like them and which peers dislike them. Social Development, 4, 182-193.
  • Pierce, K. A., & Cohen, R. (1995). Aggressors and their victims: Toward a contextual framework for understanding children's aggressor-victim relationships. Developmental Review, 15, 292-310.
  • Courtney, M. L., & Cohen, R. (1996). Behavior segmentation by boys as a function of aggressiveness and prior information. Child Development, 67, 1034-1047.
  • Ray, G. E., Cohen, R., Secrist, M. E., Duncan, M. K. (1997). Relating aggressive and victimization behaviors to children's sociometric status and friendships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 14, 95-108.
  • Ray, G. E., & Cohen, R. (1997). Children's evaluations of provocation between peers., Aggressive Behavior, 23, 417-431.
  • Graham. J. A., & Cohen, R. (1997). Race and sex as factors in children's sociometric ratings and friendship choices. Social Development, 6, 355-372.
  • Zbikowski, S. M., & Cohen, R. (1998). Parent versus peer evaluations of the social competence of children with mild asthma. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 19, 249-265.
  • Hundley, R. J., & Cohen, R. (1999). Children's relationships with classmates: a comprehensive analysis of friendship nominations and liking. Child Study Journal, 29, 233-246.
  • Warman, D. M., & Cohen, R. (2000). Stability of aggressive behaviors and children's peer relationships. Aggressive Behavior, 26, 277-290.
  • Ray, G. E., & Cohen, R. (2000). Children's evaluations of peer group entry and limited resources situations. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 46, 71-89.
  • Ray, G. E., Graham, J. A., & Cohen, R. (2001). The importance of relationship information for children's evaluations of peers and social situations. In F. Columbus (Series Ed.) Advances in Psychological Research, Vol. 5, (pp. 209-230). Huntington, NY: Nova Science.
  • Courtney, M. L., Cohen, R., Deptula, D. P., & Kitzmann, K. M. (2003). An experimental analysis of children's dislike of aggressors and victims. Social Development, 12, 46-66.
  • Deptula, D. P., & Cohen, R. (2002). Aggressive, rejected, and delinquent children and adolescents: A comparison of their friendships. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 274, 1-30.
  • Kitzmann, K., & Cohen, R. (2003).  Parents' and children's perceptions of interparental conflict as predictors of children's friendship quality.  Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 20, 689-700. 
  • Barton, B. K., & Cohen, R. (2004). Classroom gender composition and children's peer relations. Child Study Journal, 34, 29-45.
  • Hsueh, Y., Zhou, Z., Cohen, R., Hundley, R.J., & Deptula, D.P. (2005). Knowing and showing respect: Chinese and U.S. children’s understanding of respect and its association to their friendships. Journal of Psychology in Chinese Societies. 6, 89-120. 
  • Cohen, R., Hsueh, Y., Russell, K., & Ray, G. (2006). Beyond the individual:  A consideration of context for the development of aggression. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 11, 341-351.
  • Deptula, D. P., Cohen, R., Phillipsen, L. C., & Ey, S. (2006). Expecting the best:  The relation between peer optimism and social competence. The Journal of Positive Psychology. 1, 130-141.
  • Cohen, R., Hsueh, Y., Hancock, M.H., Zhou, Z., & Floyd, R. (2006). Respect, liking, and children’s social competence in China and the United States. In D.W. Shwalb & B. J. Shwalb (Issue Eds.), New directions for child and adolescent development Number 114 : Respect and disrespect: Cultural and developmental origins (pp. 53-66). San Francisco:  Jossey-Bass.
  • Cohen, R., & Hsueh, Y. (2007). Robert A. Hinde’s hierarchy of social complexity: Integrating ethology and human social functioning. In J. Zhu & Y. Hsueh (Eds.), Early Childhood Education in Ecological Perspectives (pp. 89-105).
  • Audley-Piotrowski, S., Hsueh, Y., & Cohen, R. (2008). Respect in the classroom: A developmental approach.  Academic Exchange Quarterly, 12, 207-211.
  • Zhao, D., Zhou, Z., Sun, X., Hsueh, Y., & Cohen, R. (2008). The developmental trend of mutual friendship and the prospective effect of aggressive behavior: A three-year longitudinal study. Acta Psychologica Sinica [心理学报], 40, 1223-1230.
  • Jobe-Shields, L., Cohen, R., & Parra, G. R. (2011). Patterns of change in children’s loneliness: Trajectories from third to fifth grade. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 58, 25-47.
  • Kuryluk, A., Cohen, R., & Audley-Piotrowski, S. (2011). The role of respect in the relation of aggression to popularity. Social Development, 20, 703-717.
  • Schoffstall, C. L., & Cohen, R. (2011). Cyber aggression: the offline social consequences for online offenders. Social Development, 20, 587-604.
  • Olsen, J. Parra, G. R., Cohen, R., Schoffstall, C. L., & Egli, C. J. (2012). Beyond relationship reciprocity: A consideration of varied forms of children’s relationships. Personal Relationships, 19, 72-88
  • Jackson, C. L., & Cohen, R. (2012). Childhood victimization: Modeling the relation between classroom victimization, cyber victimization, and psychosocial functioning. Psychology of Popular Media Culture.
  • Lewis, J.T., Parra, G.R., & Cohen, R. (2015). Apologies in close relationships: A review of theory and research. Journal of Family Theory and Review, 7, 48-61.
  • Tillery, R., Cohen, R., Parra, G. R., Kitzmann, K. M., & Howard Sharp, K. M. (2015). Friendship and the socialization of sadness. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 61, 486-508.
  • Howard Sharp, K. M., Cohen, R., Kitzmann, K. M., & Parra, G. R. (2015). Mechanisms mediating children's perceived maternal nonsupportive reactions to sadness and children's social and emotional functioning. Journal of Child and Family Studies,1-14.
  • Buckholdt, K.E., Kitzmann, K. M., & Cohen, R. (2016). Parent emotion coaching buffers the psychological effects of poor peer relations in the classroom. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 33, 23-41.