Sabine Doebel

Sabine Doebel

Sabine Doebel

Assistant Professor

Executive function, cognitive control, self-control, cognitive development, conceptual development

Dr. Sabine Doebel is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at George Mason University. Much of her work focuses on the development of executive function--the cognitive system that allows us to regulate our thoughts and actions in the service of goals, especially in the face of established habits and desires. In recent work her lab has examined the extent to which executive function predicts concurrent and longitudinal outcomes beyond academics (e.g., social, behavioral, and health). In other work she has been examining the role of knowledge in the emergence of working memory skills. She is also actively exploring a variety of mechanisms through which children develop executive function skills, including play, social learning, and language. 

Dr. Doebel has also contributed to efforts to promote open science practices in developmental psychology, with the goal of making it easier to help researchers build on one another's work. You can find her lab website here and her recent TEDx talk here

Selected Publications

Stucke, N. J., Stoet, G., & Doebel, S. (2022). What are the kids doing? Exploring young children's activities at home and relations with externally cued executive function and child temperament. Developmental Science, e13226. 

Doebel, S., Stucke, N. J., & Pang, S. (2022). Kindchenschema and cuteness elicit interest in caring for and playing with young children, but less so when children are masked. Scientific reports12(1), 1-8.

Doebel, S. (2020). Rethinking executive function development. Perspectives on Psychological Science.

Doebel, S., Michaelson, L. E., & Munakata, Y. (2020). Good things come to those who wait: Delaying gratification likely does matter for later achievement. Commentary on Watts, Duncan, & Quan: ‘Revisiting the Marshmallow Test: A Conceptual Replication Investigating Links Between Early Delay of Gratification and Later Outcomes’. Psychological Science.

Munakata, Y., Yanaoka, K., Doebel, S., Guild, R., Michaelson, L., & Saito, S. (2020). Group Influences on Children’s Delay of Gratification: Testing the Roles of Culture and Personal Connections. Collabra: Psychology, 6(1), 1.

Doebel, S. & Munakata, Y. (2018). Group influences on self-control: Children delay gratification and value it more when their in-group delays and their out-group doesn’t. Psychological Science, 29, 738-748.

Doebel, S. & Zelazo, P. D. (2015). A meta-analysis of the Dimensional Change Card Sort: Implications for developmental theories and the measurement of executive function in children. Developmental Review, 38, 241-268.

In the Media

https://medium.com/@sabine.doebel/did-the-marshmallow-test-really-get-debunked-5d58ee1ad486

Dissertations Supervised

Nicole J. Stucke, Will it Sink or Float? Examining Gender Differences in Science-task Persistence in Childhood and the Role of Gender-Related Stereotypes and Beliefs (2024)