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Steven R. Asher, Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

Steven R. Asher
Contact Info:
Office Location:  321 Reuben-Cooke, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708
Office Phone:  +1 919 660 5773
Email Address:   send me a message
Web Page:


Ph.D.University of Wisconsin, Madison1972
M.A.University of Wisconsin, Madison1968
B.A.Rutgers University1966
BA in Psychology (with honors)Rutgers--The State University, Newark1966

Developmental Psychology
Research Interests: Peer Relations and Social Competence

My research interests center on social development in childhood, early adolescence, and the college years with a focus on the conceptualization and assessment of relationship competence and relationship outcomes among youth and young adults. This focus includes: (1) studies of the goals children and college students pursue in response to interpersonal conflict and other challenging social tasks; (2) studies of how social relationships influence feelings of loneliness and belonging in elementary school, middle school, and college; (3) research on how maladaptive beliefs about friendship play a role in college students' relationship adjustment. As part of this program of research, my graduate students, and on-campus collaborators in Duke University's Division of Student Affairs have completed a four-year longitudinal study of the connections between social relationships, alcohol use, academic engagement, and feelings of well-being in college. Currently I am engaged in a four-year collaborative study with scholars and academic professionals on four campuses (Davidson, Duke, Furman, and Johnson C. Smith) that focuses on a wide range of psychological processes and outcomes in college student development. This research is supported by funding the The Duke Endowment.


Asher Lab
Curriculum Vitae
Current Ph.D. Students   (Former Students)

Representative Publications   (More Publications)   (search)

  1. Asher, S. R., Parker, J. G., & Walker, D. L. "Distinguishing friendship from acceptance: Implications for intervention and assessment." The company they keep: Friendship during childhood and adolescence. Ed. W. M. Bukowski, A. F. Newcomb, & W. W. Hartup New York: Cambridge University Press, 1996: 366-405.
  2. Erdley, CA; Asher, SR (1996). Children's social goals and self-efficacy perceptions as influences on their responses to ambiguous provocation. Child Development, 67(4), 1329-1344. [doi]  [abs]
  3. Asher, SR; Rose, AJ "Promoting children’s social-emotional development with peers." Emotional development and emotional literacy. Ed. Salovry, P; Sluyter, D Basic Books, 1997: 196-224.
  4. Asher, SR; Hopmeyer, A "Loneliness in childhood." Children’s needs II: Development, problems and alternatives. Ed. Bear, GG; Minke, KM; Thomas, A National Association of School Psychologists, 1997: 279-292.
  5. Rose, AJ; Asher, SR (1999). Children's goals and strategies in response to conflicts within a friendship. Developmental Psychology, 35(1), 69-79. [doi]  [abs]
  6. Rudolph, KD; Asher, SR "Adaptation and maladaptation in the peer system." Handbook of developmental psychopathology. Ed. Sameroff, AJ; Lewis, M; Miller, SM 2nd Ed.Plenum Press, 2000: 157-175.
  7. Asher, S.R., Rose, A.J. & Gabriel, S.W. "Peer rejection in everyday life." Interpersonal rejection. Ed. M. Leary New York: Oxford University Press, 2001: 105-142.
  8. Guerra, VS; Asher, SR; DeRosier, ME (2004). Effect of children’s perceived rejection on physical aggression. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 32(5), 551-563. [15500033], [doi]  [abs]
  9. Rose, AJ; Asher, SR (2004). Children's strategies and goals in response to help-giving and help-seeking tasks within a friendship. Child Development, 75(3), 749-763. [doi]  [abs]
  10. Troop Gordon, W; Asher, SR (2005). Modifications in children's goals when encountering obstacles to conflict resolution. Child Development, 76(3), 568-582. [doi]  [abs]
  11. Asher, SR; McDonald, KL "The behavioral basis of acceptance, rejection, and perceived popularity." The handbook of peer interactions, relationships, and groups. Ed. Rubin, KH; Bukowski, W; Laursen, B Gilford, 2009: 232-248.
  12. Asher, S.R., MacEvoy, J.P., & McDonald, K.L. "Children's peer relations, social competence, and school adjustment: A social tasks and social goals perspectives.." Advances in Achievement and Motivation, Vol. 15: Social psychological perspectives. Ed. M.L. Maehr, S. Karabenick, & T. Urdan Bingley, UK: Emerald, 2008: 357-390.
  13. MacEvoy, JP; Asher, SR (2012). When friends disappoint: Boys’ and girls’ responses to transgressions of friendship expectations. Child Development, 83(1), 104-119. [doi]  [abs]
  14. Mcdonald, KL; Asher, SR (2013). College students' revenge goals across friend, romantic partner, and roommate contexts: The role of interpretations and emotions. Social Development, 22(3), 499-521. [doi]  [abs]
  15. Asher, SR; Guerry, W; McDonald, KL "Children as friends." The SAGE handbook of child research. Ed. Melton, GB; Ben-Arieh, A; Cashmore, J; Goodman, GS; Worley, NK Sage, 2014: 169-194.

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