Darcia Narvaez

Darcia Narvaez

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Professor of Psychology

Office: 100 Haggar Hall
Phone: 574-631-7835
Email: dnarvaez@nd.edu
Twitter: @MoralLandscapes

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Areas of Expertise

Child development, parenting, evolution, morality, virtue development, moral education

As director of the Moral Psychology Lab, Narvaez explores questions of moral cognition and moral development over the lifespan in multiple contexts (e.g., family, school). She examines how early life experience influences moral functioning and moral character in children and adults. She integrates neurobiological, clinical, developmental and education sciences in her theories and research about moral development. Questions that interest her include: How does early experience shape moral capacities? What types of moral orientations can people have? How do moral dispositions develop? What is moral wisdom and how do we cultivate it? How can educators and parents foster optimal development, well-being and communal imagination? She has developed several integrative theories: Adaptive Ethical Expertise, Integrative Ethical Education, Triune Ethics Theory. She has co-authored or co-edited five books, including the award-winning “Postconventional Moral Thinking,” “Moral Development, Self and Identity” and, most recently, “Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture and Wisdom.” Narvaez also runs a Psychology Today blog called “Moral Landscapes.”


Interview with Darcia Narvaez

Psychology Professor Darcia Narvaez shows a relationship between certain child rearing practices and better mental health, greater empathy and conscience development, and higher intelligence in children.


Ruling on video games shows ‘deep misunderstanding of human development’
Violent behavior/psychosis tied to children’s developmental neglect
Violent video games link killing to rewards, keep kids’ ‘primitive brain’ in charge
Harry Potter films demonstrate fierce moral motivation
Parenting in early years forms basis for ‘ethical brain’ development
Psychologist gives Harry Potter books an ‘A’ for ethics
New video game ‘Bully’ as harmful as name suggests
Movie ratings


Parent touch, play and support in childhood vital to well-being as an adult
Researchers in new Notre Dame center awarded $3.1M grant to study virtues in science
Notre Dame hosts parenting conference for local parents and practitioners
Modern parenting may hinder brain development, research shows
Research shows child rearing practices of distant ancestors foster morality, compassion in kids
Narvaez elected fellow of American Psychological Association
Psychology professors receive book award
Psychology professor addresses moral education in “Handbook of Child Psychology”


Progressive Radio Network — Resistance Radio
WSBT — Notre Dame research: Cuddling your kids may make them healthier adults
Voice America — Meet Your Baby’s Needs with Primal Caregiving
Kindred Media — Creating Sustainable Humans With Conscious Parenting: An Interview With Darcia Narvaez, PhD
Michiana Mom — The Truth About Crying It Out
International Business Times — A parent’s caring touch results in well-adjusted adults
Psychology Today — Why Does ‘Caveman’ Parenting Influence Adult Morality?
Inside Higher Ed — Academic Minute: Companionship Care
Reuters/PR Newswire — Why Does My Teen Act Without Thinking?
BuzzFeed — This Is Why Your Baby Doesn’t Sleep Through The Night
Philly Voice — Screaming to sleep, Part Two: The moral imperative to end ‘cry it out’
Men’s Health — He Spent a Month Being Morally Righteous, and the Lessons Aren’t What You Think
Yahoo News — Sleep Training Your Baby: The Great Debate
Psychology Today — Dangers of ‘Crying It Out’
Psychology Today — The Decline of Children and the Moral Sense
NPR — Killing Comes Naturally To Chimps, Scientists Say
The Independent — Let sleeping sprogs lie: Why the benefits of sharing a bed with your children outweighs the risks
Psychology Today — Is Pretend Play Good for Kids?
The Wall Street Journal — Clues to Teaching Young Children to Tell the Truth
Psychology Today — Understanding and Helping Toddler Sleep
The Good Men Project Magazine — 10 Things You Should Never Say to a Dad
Psychology Today — Children in Parents’ Bed: A Good Idea?
Psychology Today — Normal Parent Behaviors and Why They Won’t Hurt Your Child
CNN — Should babies be allowed to ‘cry it out’?
New York Daily News — Is helicopter parenting a good thing after all? ‘Tough love’ approach leads to anxious, depressed kids, some researchers say
PhysOrg — Modern parenting may hinder brain development, researcher claims
Huffington Post — Cry it out: The Method that Kills Baby Brain Cells
International Business Times — Should You Let Your Baby Cry It Out?
The New York Times — Reasoning, Scholars Say, Evolved Just as a Means to Win
Woman’s Day — 4 Prehistoric Parenting Pointers
Indianapolis Star — Exploiting a right for profit
National Catholic Reporter — Violent Video Games Back in Court
TIME — Why Spoiled Babies Grow Up to Be Smarter, Kinder Kids
UPI — Modern parenting, less compassionate kids
National Catholic Reporter — Violent Video Games Back in Court
MSNBC — Is it time to return to caveman parenting?
USA Today — Old ways best in childrearing – think Neolithic
South Bend Tribune — Are DVDs for littlest ones a bad idea?