Dave Sobel


David Sobel received his B.A. in Psychology and Computer Science with distinction from Swarthmore College in 1995, and his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of California in 2001. He joined Brown’s Department of Cognitive and Linguistic Sciences in 2001. He is currently a Full Professor in the Department of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences. Research in his lab centers on cognitive development, specifically children’s causal and social learning, theory of mind, understanding of pedagogy, understanding of prosocial behavior, and learning from play, particularly in informal learning environments. Since 2003, he has collaborated with Providence Children’s Museum, mostly in the form of Mind Lab, a permanent exhibit at the museum dedicated to parents and children learning about learning. He is the editor of Cognitive Development in Museum Settings: Relating Research to Practice (2016, Psychology Press), an Associate Editor for Developmental Psychology, and serves on the board of the Cognitive Development Society. His research is supported by NSF and NIH.


  • CLPS0610 Children's Thinking: Introduction to Cognitive Development
  • CLPS0620 Introduction to Social and Moral Development
  • CLPS2002 Core Topics in Cognitive and Psychological Sciences

Office Hours: 

Fridays 9:30-11:30am