Tanya MacGillivray

Professor | Area Coordinator - Developmental

Area of Study


Research Interests

Child development and culture, early communication, social learning, parenting practices and socialization across cultures.

Selected Publications

Student authors underlined. *Denotes co-first authorship


Broesch, T., von Rueden, C., Yurkowski, K., Quinn, H., Alami, S., Davis, H.E., Stupica, B., Tari, J., & Bureau, J.F. (accepted with revisions, JCCP). Fatherhood and father-child attachment in two small-scale societies.

Boyette, A., Cebioglu, S., Broesch, T. (2022). “Teaching strategies are shaped by experience with formal education: Experimental evidence from caregiver-child dyads in two Tannese communities" Memory & Cognition.

Cebioglu, S., Marin, K., & Broesch, T. (2022). Variation in caregivers’ references to their toddlers: Child-directed speech in Vanuatu and Canada. Child Development.

Lew-Levy, S., Bombjaková, D., Milks, A., Ntamboudila, F., Kline, M.A., & Broesch, T. (2022). Costly teaching contributes to the acquisition of spear hunting skill among BaYaka forager adolescents. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.

Broesch, T., Legare, C., Little, E., & Carver, L. (2022). Still-face redux: Infant responses to a classic and modified still-face paradigm in proximal and distal care cultures. Infant Behavior and Development.

Broesch, T., Lew-Levy, S., Kärtner, J., Kanngiesser, P., & Kline, M. (2022). A roadmap to doing culturally grounded developmental science. The Review of Philosophy and Psychology.



McClay, E., Cebioglu, S., Broesch, T., Yeung, H.H. (2021). Rethinking the phonetics of baby-talk: Differences across Canada and Vanuatu in the articulation of mothers' speech to infants. Developmental Science. https://doi.org/10.1111/desc.1318

Pope, S. & Lew-Levy, S., Haun, D., Kline, M., & Broesch, T. (accepted). Out of the empirical box: A mixed-methods study of tool innovation among Congolese BaYaka forager and Bondongo fisher-farmer children. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology.

Lew-Levy, S., Milks, A., Broesch, T., & Kline, M.A. (accepted). BaYaka adolescents from the Republic of Congo nominate accessible adults as preferred spear hunting models. Current Anthropology. 

Carpendale, J., Wallbridge, B., Broesch, T., Cameron-Faulkner, T., Mueller, U., Ten Eycke, K. (accepted). “The Development of Giving in forms of Object-Exchange: Exploring the Roots of Communication and Morality in Early Interaction around Objects.” Human Development.

Barrett, H.C., Bolyanatz, A., Broesch, T., Cohen, E., Froerer, P., Kanovsky, M., Schug, M., & Laurence, S. (2021) Intuitive dualism and afterlife beliefs: A cross-cultural study. Cognitive Science. doi:10.1111/cogs.12992

Broesch, T. & Wang, Y. (in press) Human Infancy and Childhood. In J. Vonk & T.K. Shackelford (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behaviour. Springer.

Cebioglu, S. & Broesch, T. (In press). Explaining cross-cultural variation in mirror self-recognition: New insights into the ontogeny of objective self-awareness. Developmental Psychology

Broesch, T.Carolan, P.Cebioglu, S., von Rueden, C., Boyette, A., Moya, C., Hewlett, B. & Kline, M. (in press). Opportunities for interaction: Natural observations of children’s social behaviour in five societies. Human Nature.

Broesch, T. & Carpendale, J. (2021). Emotional development across cultures. Oxford University Press Handbook of Emotional Development.


*Broesch, T., *Crittenden, A. N., Beheim, B., Blackwell, A. D., Bunce, J., Colleran, H., Dr, … Borgerhoff Mulder, M. Navigating cross-cultural research: methodological and ethical considerations. Proc. R. Soc. B., 287(1935). http://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2020.1245

Aime, H., Rochat, P., & Broesch, T. Cultural differences in infant spontaneous behaviour: Evidence from a small-scale, rural island society. Infant and Child Development. https://doi-org.proxy.lib.sfu.ca/10.1002/icd.2204

House, B., Kanngiesser, P., Barrett, C., Broesch, T., Cebioglu, S., Crittendon, A., Erut, A., Lew-Levy, S., Sebastian-Enesco, C., Smith, A., Yilmaz, S., & Silk, J. (2020). Universal norm psychology leads to societal diversity in prosocial behavior and development. Nature Human Behavior.

Lew-Levy, S., Ringen, E.J., Crittenden, A.N., Mabulla, I.A., Broesch, T., Kline, M.A. The life history of learning subsistence skills among Hadza and BaYaka foragers from Tanzania and the Republic of Congo. Human Nature.


Smit, A.Broesch, T., Siegel, J., & Mistlberger, R. (2019). The dawn of social jetlag: Sleep in indigenous villages with and without electric lighting on Tanna Island, Vanuatu. Scientific Reports.

Hernik, M. & Broesch, T. Infant gaze following depends on communicative signals: An eye-tracking study of 5-to-7-month-olds in Vanuatu. Developmental Science. https://doi.org/10.1111/desc.12779


Kline, M., Shamsudeen, R. & Broesch, T. Variation is the universal: Making cultural evolution work in developmental psychology. Philosophical Transactions

of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 373(1743). http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2017.0059

Broesch, T., & Bryant, G. A. Fathers’ infant-directed speech in a small-scale society. Child Development, 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1111/cdev.12768


Aime, H., Broesch, T., Aknin, L. B., & Warneken, F. Evidence for proactive and reactive helping in two- to five-year-olds from a small-scale society. PLoS ONE12(11). https://doi-org.proxy.lib.sfu.ca/10.1371/journal.pone.0187787

Broesch, T., Itakura, S., & Rochat, P. Learning from others: Selective requests by 3-year-olds of three cultures. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 48(9), 1432-1441. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022022117731093


Broesch, T., Rochat, P., Olah, K., Broesch, J. & Henrich, J. Similarities and differences in maternal responsiveness in three societies: Evidence from Fiji, Kenya and US. Child Development, 87(3), 700–711. https://doi.org/10.1111/cdev.12501

Broesch, T., (2016). Motherese. Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science. Springer, pp.1-2.


Aknin, L. B., Broesch, T., & Hamlin, J. K., & Van de Vondervoot, J. W. Prosocial behavior leads to happiness in a small-scale rural society. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 144(4), 788–795. https://doi.org/10.1037/xge0000082


Broesch, T. & Bryant, G. Prosody in infant directed speech is similar across western and traditional cultures. Journal of Cognition and Development, 1-13. https://doi.org/10.1080/15248372.2013.833923


Barrett, H. C., Broesch, T., Scott, R. M., He, Z., Baillargeon, R., Wu, D., … Laurence, S. Early false belief understanding in traditional non-Western societies. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 280(1755), 20122654. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2012.2654


Rochat, P., Broesch, T. & Jayne, K. Social awareness and early self-recognition. Consciousness and Cognition, 21, 1491-1497. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.concog.2012.04.007

Suanda, U., Meyer, K., Broesch, T., Kulkin, L., & Namy, L. Why two-year-olds’ fail to learn gestures as object labels: Evidence from a dual-task paradigm. Language, Learning and Development, 9, 50-65. https://doi.org/10.1080/15475441.2012.723189


Broesch, T., Callaghan, T., Henrich, J., Murphy, C., & Rochat, P. Cultural variations in children’s mirror self-recognition. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 40(6), 1019-1031. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022022110381114


Rochat, P., Dias, M., Liping, G., Broesch, T., Passos-Ferrera, C., Winning, A. & Berg, B. Fairness in distributive justice by 3- and 5-year-olds across seven cultures. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 40, 416-442. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022022109332844


Callaghan, T. C., Rochat, P., MacGillivray, T. & MacLellan, C. Modeling referential actions in 6- to 18-month-old infants: A precursor to symbolic understanding. Child Development, 75, 1733-1744. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8624.2004.00813.x


Future courses may be subject to change.