Faculty Affiliates

Barbara Rogoff
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Division Social Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Psychology Department
  • Affiliations Latin American & Latino Studies, Research Center for the Americas, Education Department
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Fax
  • Website
  • Office Location
    • Social Sciences 2, Room 307
  • Office Hours Mondays 1:30-2:30pm (Winter 2019)
  • Mail Stop Psychology Faculty Services
  • Mailing Address
    • Psych Faculty Services, UC Santa Cruz
    • Santa Cruz CA 95064
  • Courses Psych 110: Culture and Human Development, Psych 119A: Development as a Sociocultural Process, Psych 290B: Advanced Developmental Research and Writing

Summary of Expertise

Barbara Rogoff's most recent book examines the relation of individuals and communities across their histories. It focuses on changes and continuities in the lives of children and familiies in a Guatemalan Mayan community, through the life of a Mayan woman born to be a midwife. Developing Destinies: A Mayan Midwife and Town. NY: Oxford University Press, 2011.

Research Interests

Barbara Rogoff investigates cultural variation in learning processes and settings, with special interest in communities where schooling has not been prevalent. She is particularly interested in cultural aspects of collaboration, learning through observation, children's interest and keen attention to ongoing events, roles of adults as guides or as instructors, and children's opportunities to participate in cultural activities or in age-specific child-focused settings.

Also see www.intentcommunityparticipation.com

Biography, Education and Training


Barbara Rogoff is UCSC Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of California-Santa Cruz. She investigates cultural aspects of children’s learning and how communities arrange for learning, finding especially sophisticated collaboration and attention among children from Indigenous communities of the Americas. See www.learningbyobservingandpitchingin.com


She received a Distinguished Lifetime Contributions Award (Society for Research in Child Development) and the Chemers Award for Outstanding Research (UCSC).  She is a Fellow of the National Academy of Education, American Anthropological Association, Association for Psychological Sciences, American Psychological Association, and American Educational Research Association. She has held the University of California Presidential Chair and Fellowships of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Kellogg Foundation, Spencer Foundation, and the Exploratorium, and served as Editor of Human Development.





Selected Publications

  • Developing Destinies: A Mayan Midwife and Town (Oxford University Press, 2011)
  • The Cultural Nature of Human Development (Oxford University Press, 2003)
  • Learning Together: Children and Adults in a School Community (Oxford University Press, 2001) Rogoff, B., Goodman Turkanis, C., and Bartlett, L. (Eds.).
  • Rogoff, B., Alcalá, L., Coppens, A.D., López, A., Ruvalcaba, O., & Silva, K.G. (2014) (Guest Eds.), Learning by Observing and Pitching In to family and community endeavors. Special Issue, Human Development, 57.
  • Correa-Chávez, M., Mejía-Arauz, R., & Rogoff, B. (2015). (Editors.) Children learn by observing and contributing to family and community endeavors: A cultural paradigm.  In Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 49.
  • Alcalá, L., Rogoff, B., & López Fraire, A. (2018). Sophisticated collaboration is common among Mexican-heritage US children.  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115, 11377-11384.
  • Rogoff, B., Dahl, A., & Callanan, M. (2018). The importance of understanding children’s lived experience.  Developmental Review, 50, 5-15.
  • Mejía-Arauz, R., Rogoff, B., Dayton, A., & Henne-Ochoa, R. (2018). Collaboration or negotiation: Two ways of interacting suggest how shared thinking develops.  Current Opinion in Psychology, 23, 117-123.
  • Rogoff, B., Coppens, A., Alcalá, L., Aceves-Azuara, I., Ruvalcaba, O., López, A., & Dayton, A. (2017). Noticing learners’ strengths through cultural research. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 12, 876-888. 
  • Coppens, A. D., Alcalá, L., Rogoff, B., & Mejía-Arauz, R. (2016). Children's contributions in family work: Two cultural paradigms. In S. Punch, R. M. Vanderbeck, & T. Skelton (Eds.), Families, intergenerationality, and peer group relations, In Geographies of children and young people Major Reference Work, Vol. 5, pp. 1-27. Heidelberg, Germany: Springer.
  • Rogoff, B., Callanan, M., Gutiérrez, K.D., & Erickson, F. (2016). The organization of informal learning. Review of Research in Education, 40, 356-401.  [Invitational review in the issue celebrating the Centenniel of the American Educational Research Association.]
  • Rogoff, B. (2016). Culture and participation: A paradigm shift.  Current Opinion in Psychology, 8, 182-189.
  • Dayton, A., & Rogoff, B. (2016).  Paradigms in arranging for children’s learning. In D.S. Guimarães (Ed.), Amerindian paths: Guiding dialogues with psychology.  Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
  • López, A., Ruvalcaba, O., & Rogoff, B. (2015). Attentive helping as a cultural practice of Mexican-heritage families. In Y.M. Caldera & E.W. Lindsey (Eds.), Mexican American children and families. (pp. 76-91). NY: Routledge.


    Rogoff, B., Mejía-Arauz, R., & Correa-Chávez, M. (2015). A cultural paradigm — Learning by Observing and Pitching In. In M. Correa-Chávez, R. Mejía-Arauz, & B. Rogoff (Eds.), Children learn by observing and contributing to family and community endeavors: A cultural paradigm.  In Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 49, pp. 1-22.


    Ruvalcaba, O., Rogoff, B., López, A., Correa-Chávez, M., & Gutiérrez, K. (2015). Children’s avoidance of interrupting others’ activities in requesting help: Cultural aspects of considerateness. In M. Correa-Chávez, R. Mejía-Arauz, & B. Rogoff (Eds.), Children learn by observing and contributing to family and community endeavors: A cultural paradigm.  In Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 49, pp. 185-205.


    Silva, K.G., Shimpi, P.M., & Rogoff, B. (2015). Young children’s attention to what’s going on: Cultural differences. In M. Correa-Chávez, R. Mejía-Arauz, & B. Rogoff (Eds.), Children learn by observing and contributing to family and community endeavors: A cultural paradigm.  In Advances in Child Development and Behavior, Vol. 49, pp. 207-227.
  • Rogoff, B., Correa-Chávez, M., & Silva, K.G. (2015).  Cultural variation in children’s attention and learning.  In M.A. Gernsbacher & J.R. Pomerantz (Eds.), Psychology and the real world.  NY: Worth. Revised for Second edition.
  • Rogoff, B. (2014).  Learning by Observing and Pitching In to family and community endeavors: An orientation. Human Development, 57, 69-81.


    Rogoff, B., Najafi, B., & Mejía-Arauz, R. (2014). Constellations of cultural practices across generations: Indigenous American heritage and Learning by Observing and Pitching In. Human Development, 57, 82-95.


    Alcalá, L., Rogoff, B., Mejía-Arauz, R., Coppens, A.,D. & Dexter, A.L.  (2014). Children’s initiative in contributions to family work in Indigenous-heritage and Cosmopolitan communities in Mexico. Human Development, 57, 96-115.


    Coppens, A.D., Alcalá, L., Mejía-Arauz, R., & Rogoff, B. (2014). Children’s initiative in family household work in Mexico. Human Development, 57, 116-130.


    Paradise, R., Mejía-Arauz, R., Silva, K.G., Dexter, A.L., & Rogoff, B. (2014).  One, two, three, Eyes on me! Adults attempting control versus guiding in support of initiative. Human Development, 57, 131-149.


    Coppens, A.D., Silva, K.G., Ruvalcaba, O., Alcalá, L., López, A., & Rogoff, B. (2014). Learning by Observing and Pitching In: Benefits and processes of expanding repertoires.  Human Development, 57, 150-161.

  • Dayton, A., & Rogoff, B. (2013).  ‘On being indigenous’ as a process.  Human Development, 56, 106-112.


    Tsethlikai, M., & Rogoff, B. (2013). Involvement in traditional cultural practices and American Indian children’s incidental recall of a folktale. Developmental Psychology, 49, 568-578.
  • Roberts, A.L.D., & Rogoff, B. (2012). Children’s reflections on two cultural ways of working together: “Talking with hands and eyes” or requiring words.  International Journal of Educational Psychology, 1, 73-99.


    Rogoff, B. (2012). Learning without lessons: Opportunities to expand knowledge. Infancia y Aprendizaje, 35, 233-252.

             [Spanish translation] Aprender sin lecciones: Oportunidades para expandir el conocimiento. Infancia y Aprendizaje, 35, 242-252.


    Mejia-Arauz, R., Roberts, A.D., & Rogoff, B. (2012). Cultural variation in balance of nonverbal conversation and talk. International Perspectives in Psychology, 1, 207-220.

  • Rogoff, B., Correa-Chavez, M., & Silva, K. G. (2011). Cultural variation in children's attention and learning. In M.A. Gernsbacher, R. W. Pew, L. M. Hough & J. R. Pomerantz (Eds.), Psychology and the real world: Essays illustrating fundamental contributions to society (pp. 154-163). New York, NY: Worth Publishers.
  • Rogoff, B., Morelli, G.A., & Chavajay, P. (2010).  Children's integration in communities and segregation from people of differing ages.  Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5, 431-440.

  • Silva, K. G., Correa-Chávez, M., & Rogoff, B. (2010). Mexican-heritage children's attention and learning from interactions directed to others. Child Development, 81(3), 898-912.
  • López, A., Correa-Chávez, M., Rogoff, B., & Gutiérrez, K. (2010). Attention to instruction directed to another by US Mexican-heritage children of varying cultural backgrounds. Developmental Psychology, 46(3), 593-601.
  • Paradise, R., & Rogoff, B. (2009). Side by side: Learning by observing and pitching in. Ethos, 37(1), 102-138.
  • Correa-Chávez, M., & Rogoff, B. (2009). Children’s attention to interactions directed to others: Guatemalan Mayan and European American patterns. Developmental Psychology, 45(3), 630-641.
  • Mejía Arauz, R., Rogoff, B. Dexter, A., & Najafi, B. (2007). Cultural variation in children's social organization. Child Development, 78, 1001-1014.
  • Angelillo, C., Rogoff, B., & Chavajay, P. (2007). Examining shared endeavors by abstracting video coding schemes with fidelity to cases. In R. Goldman, R. Pea, B. Barron, & S. J. Derry (Eds.), Video research in the learning sciences. (pp. 189-206). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
  • Rogoff, B., Correa-Chávez, M., & Navichoc Cotuc, M. (2005). A cultural/historical view of schooling in human development. In D. Pillemer & S.H. White (Eds.), Developmental psychology and social change (pp. 225-263). NY: Cambridge University Press.

Selected Recordings


Rogoff, B. (2011). Developing Destinies (6 min YouTube video, over 8,000 views so far)




Rogoff, B. (2015, April). It starts at home: Letting children collaborate. TEDxSantaCruz talk. www.facebook.com/barbararogoffpublications/videos/1116724285019770/?video_source=pages_finch_main_video


Rogoff, B., & Correa-Chávez, M. (2016, May). Learning by observing. 3-minute video honored by NSF as the top public vote-getter and a top conversation-generator, of all 156 videos in NSF's Video Showcase. Over 15,000 views so far. http://stemforall2016.videohall.com/presentations/693


Rogoff, B. (2016, Sept). Children from ‘underserved minority’ backgrounds have strengths for learning. ED-Talk for Centennial of the American Educational Research Association, Washington DC. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=judFMZsaJaA


Rogoff, B., Dayton, A., & Aceves-Azuara, I. (2017, May). Learning to collaborate and collaborating to learn. 3-minute video honored by NSF as the #2 public vote-getter and #2 conversation-generator, of all 171 videos in NSF's Video Showcase. Over 12,000 views so far. http://stemforall2017.videohall.com/presentations/1034


Rogoff, B., López Fraire, A., & Alcalá, L. (2018, May).  Learning by helping.  3-minute video honored by NSF as the #3 public choice and #2 conversation-generator, of all 214 videos in NSF's 2018 Video Showcase. Over 23,000 views so far. http://videohall.com/p/1318


Rogoff, B. (2011- ).  Developing Destinies (Facebook page) https://www.facebook.com/barbararogoffpublications