Harriet Over
Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor)



  • 2017 –            Associate Professor, University of York
  • 2013 – 2017   Anniversary Research Lecturer, University of York
  • 2009 – 2013  Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute
                            for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig
  • 2006 – 2009  PhD, Developmental Psychology, University of 
  • 2005 – 2006  MSc, Social Science Research Methods, University of
  • 2004 – 2005  Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology, University of
  • 2000 – 2003  BA History and Politics, University of Sheffield



  • Intergroup bias in children and adults
  • Social learning and social motivation
  • Cross cultural approaches to development


  • 2018: Margaret Donaldson Early Career Prize, British Psychology Society
  • 2017 - 2022: ERC Starting grant MINDTOMIND (PI €1,230,000)
  • 2017: Margaret Mead Award, British Science Association
  • 2016 - 2020: Leverhulme Trust Project Grant ‘Harnessing the power of visuo-motor fluency to encourage healthy choices’ (Co I, £266,328)
  • 2014 - 2017: Future Research Leaders Grant, Economic and Social Research Council (PI, £304,500)
  • 2005 - 2009: Economic and Social Research Council Studentship
  • 2007 - 2008: Leverhulme Trust Study Abroad Studentship
  • 2008: PhD Prize for Early Promise, Cardiff University
  • 2001: Howard Warrender Memorial Prize, University of Sheffield


Full publications list

Peer-reviewed publications

2018 and in press

  • Clay, Z.E., Over, H., & Tennie, C. (2018). What drives young children to over-imitate? Investigating the effects of age, context, action type and transitivity. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 166, 520-534.
  • Flavell, J.C., Tipper, S.P., & Over, H. (in press). Preference for illusory contours: Beyond symmetry, familiarity and nameability. Emotion.
  • McLoughlin, N., & Over, H. (in press). The developmental origins of dehumanization. Advances in Child Development and Behaviour.
  • McLoughlin, N., Tipper, S., & Over, H. (in press). Young children perceive less humanness in outgroup faces. Developmental Science.
  • Over, H. (2018). The influence of group membership on young children’s prosocial behaviour. Current Opinion in Psychology, 20, 17-20.
  • Over, H., & Cook, R. (2018). Where do spontaneous first impressions of faces come from? Cognition, 170, 190-200.
  • Over, H., Eggleston, A., Bell, J., & Dunham, Y. (in press). Young children seek out biased information about social groups. Developmental Science.
  • Over, H., & McCall, C. (in press). Becoming us and them: Social learning and intergroup bias. Social and Personality Psychology Compass.


  • McLoughlin, N., & Over, H. (2017). Young children are more likely to spontaneously attribute mental states to members of their own group. Psychological Science, 28, 1503-1509.
  • Steinbeis, N., & Over, H. (2017). Priming behavioural control encourages helping in childhood. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 159, 310-318.
  • Strachan, J.W.A., Kirkham, A.J., Manssuer, L.R., Over, H, & Tipper, S.P. (2017). Incidental learning of trust from eye-gaze: Effects of race and facial trustworthiness. Visual Cognition, 1-12.
  • Uskul, A.K. & Over, H. (2017). Culture, social interdependence and ostracism. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 26, 371-376


  • Misch, A., Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2016).  I won’t tell: Young children show loyalty to their group by keeping group secrets.  Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 142, 96-106
  • Over, H. (2016).The origins of belonging: Social motivation in infants and young children. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 371.
  • Over, H*., & Uskul, A.* (2016). Culture moderates children’s responses to ostracism situations.  Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 110, 710-724.  * joint first author.
  • Over, H., Vaish, A., & Tomasello, M. (2016). Do young children accept collective responsibility for the negative actions of ingroup members? Cognitive Development, 40, 24-32.
  • Pawling, R., Kirkham, A., Tipper, S.P, & Over, H. (2016). Memory for incidentally perceived social cues: Effects on person perception. British Journal of Psychology, 108, 169-190.  
  • Ploetner, M., Over, H., Carpenter, M., & Tomasello, M. (2016). What is a group? Young children’s perceptions of different types of groups and group entitativity. PLOSONE, 11, 1-14.
  • Richter, N., Over, H., & Dunham, Y. (2016). The effects of minimal group membership on three-year-olds’ social preferences, estimates of similarity and behavioural attribution. Collabra, 2, 1-8.
  • Song, R., Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2016).  Young children discriminate genuine from fake smiles and expect people displaying genuine smiles to be more prosocial. Evolution and Human Behavior, 37, 490-501.
  • White, L.O., Klein, A.M., Graneist, A., von Klitzing, K., Hill, J., Over, H., & Crowley, M. (2016). Putting ostracism into perspective: Young children tell more mentalistic stories after exclusion, but not when anxious. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 1-15.


  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2015). Children infer friendship and status relations from watching others imitate. Developmental Science, 18, 917-925.
  • Oostenbroek, J., & Over, H. (2015). Young children contrast their behaviour to that of outgroup members. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 139, 234-241.
  • Ploetner, M., Over, H., Carpenter, M., & Tomasello, M. (2015). Young children show the bystander effect in helping situations.  Psychological Science, 26, 499-506.
  • Ploetner, M., Over, H., Carpenter, M., & Tomasello, M. (2015). The effects of collaboration and group membership on prosocial behavior, liking, affiliation and trust.  Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 139, 161-173.
  • Song, R., Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2015). Children draw more affiliative pictures following priming with ostracism.  Developmental Psychology, 51, 831-840.


  • Beier, J.S., Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2014). Young children help others to achieve their social goals.  Developmental Psychology, 50, 934-940.
  • Buttelmann, D., Over, H., Carpenter, M., & Tomasello, M. (2014). Eighteen-month-olds understand false belief in an unexpected-contents task. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 119, 120-126.
  • Misch, A., Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2014). Young children’s understanding of loyalty to the group.  Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 126, 19-36
  • Uskul, A., & Over, H. (2014). Responses to social exclusion in cultural context: Evidence from farming and herding communities. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 106, 752-771.


  • Engelmann, J., Over, H., Herrmann, E., & Tomasello, M. (2013).  Young children care more about their reputation with ingroup members and possible reciprocators. Developmental Science, 16, 952-958.
  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2013).  The social side of imitation.  Child Development Perspectives, 7, 6-11. (An updated version of this paper is reprinted in Z. Radman (Ed.), Interpersonality and social cognition [Special issue].  Synthesis philosophica.)
  • Over, H., Carpenter, M., Spears, R., & Gattis, M. (2013). Children selectively trust individuals who have imitated them. Social Development, 22, 215-224.

2012 and earlier

  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2012).  Putting the social into social learning: Explaining both selectivity and fidelity in children’s copying behaviour.  Journal of Comparative Psychology, 126, 182-192.
  • Over, H., & Gattis, M. (2010). Verbal imitation is based on intention understanding. Cognitive Development, 25, 46-55.
  • Holcombe, A.O., Altschuler, E.L., & Over, H. (2009). A developmental theory of synaesthesia, with long historical roots. Cognitive Neuropsychology, 26, 227-229. 
  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2009).Eighteen-month-old infants show increased helping following priming with affiliation.  Psychological Science, 20, 1189-1193.
  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2009).  Priming third-party ostracism increases affiliative imitation in children.  Developmental Science, 12, F1-F8.


Book chapters, commentaries and reviews

  • Uskul, A., & Over, H. (in press). The role of economic culture in social interdependence: Consequences for social exclusion experiences. In A. K. Uskul & Oishi, S. (Eds.), Socioeconomic environment and human psychology: Social, ecological, and cultural perspectives. New York: Oxford University Press. 
  • Catmur, C., Cross, E.S., & Over, H. (2016). Introduction to understanding self and others: From origins to disorders.  Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 371, 1-5.
  • Oostenbroek, J., & Over, H. (2016). The cultural transmission of social information. in S. S. Obhi and E.S. Cross (Eds.) Shared representations: Sensorimotor foundations of social life.  Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, pp 136-151.
  • Over, H. & Over, D.E. (2016). Deontic reasoning and social norms: Broader implications. In N. Galbraith, E. Lucas, & D.E. Over (Eds.) The thinking mind: The use of thinking in everyday life. Hove, UK: Psychology Press, pp 54-66.
  • Haun, D.B.M., & Over, H., (2013). Like me: A homophily-based account of human culture. In P.J. Richerson, and M. Christiansen, (Eds). Cultural evolution. Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press. Pp. 75-87. (Reprinted in Epistemological dimensions of evolutionary psychology.)
  • Over, H., & Carpenter, M. (2012). Imitative learning in humans and animals in N. Seel (Ed.), Encyclopedia of the sciences of learning (pp. 1499-1501). Springer. pp.1499-1501.
  • Tennie, C., & Over, H. (2012). Cultural intelligence is key to explaining human tool use. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 35, 242-243.
  • Over, H., & Gattis, M. (2007). Book Review: The analogical mind. Eurasian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, 3, 391-392.


Contact details

Dr Harriet Over
Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor)
Department of Psychology
Room PS/C103

Tel: 01904 322906



  • Social and Emotional Development 2
  • Social Cognitive Development
  • Project and Literature Survey supervision
  • Advanced Issues in Experimental, Cognitive and Social Psychology