Nathaniel Riggs is a professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies. His research focuses on the translation of basic research of neurocognitive development into interventions for child and adolescent health promotion, with an emphasis on executive function – the set of neurocognitive skills mediated by the prefrontal cortex that encompasses self-regulated decision-making and goal-oriented problem-solving.
Another area of interest focuses on the role of after-school programs in youth development. Riggs is currently a co-investigator on the Pathways to Health study which translated evidence-based social-emotional learning and substance use interventions into a school-based health promotion curriculum with a parent component. He is also a principal investigator of a cultural translation of this Pathways curriculum, set to be implemented in New Delhi, India.
Riggs received his B.S. in psychology from the University of Washington in 1996. He then studied human development and family studies at Pennsylvania State University, earning his M.S. in 2001 and his Ph.D. in 2003.