Dr Ruth Ford

Associate Professor in Psychology

Faculty:Faculty of Science and Engineering

School:Psychology and Sport Science

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Mind and Behaviour

Research Supervision:Yes

Ruth is a developmental psychologist whose main research interests are in children’s cognitive and memory development.

[email protected]


Ruth joined ARU in 2013, following lecturing and tutoring posts in the United Kingdom (Cardiff University, Swansea University) and Australia (Griffith University, Macquarie University). She completed her PhD in Psychology at the University of New South Wales.

Research interests

  • Cognitive development
  • Memory
  • Early intervention
  • Autism

Areas of research supervision

Ruth would be pleased to consider applications from prospective PhD students with interests in cognitive developmental psychology, particularly memory development. She is currently the first supervisor of Sara Marshall-Gowers (directed forgetting and emotion regulation in older adults) and Syeda Asma (young children’s prospective memory in naturalistic settings). At ARU, she was previously the first supervisor of Hannah Belcher (experiences of women with undiagnosed autism; awarded PhD in 2021) and Antonia Johnson (visual inspection time and processing speed in dyslexia and developmental coordination disorder; awarded PhD in 2020).


  • Self and Society (Level 4)
  • Social Psychology, Development and Difference (Levels 5 & 7)


  • PhD (Psychology), University of New South Wales
  • BSc (Hons), University of New South Wales

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Associate Editor – Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
  • Editorial Board – Cognitive Development
  • Editorial Board – British Journal of Developmental Psychology
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

Selected recent publications

Kvavilashvili, L., & Ford, R. M. (in press). Metamemory for involuntary autobiographical memories and semantic mind-pops in 5-, 7- and 9-year-old children and young adults. Child Development.

Belcher, H. L., Morein-Zamir, S., Stagg, S. D., & Ford, R. M. (in press). Shining a light on a hidden population: Social functioning and mental health in women reporting autistic traits but lacking diagnosis. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

Ryder, N., Kvavilashvili, L., & Ford, R. M. (2022). Effects of incidental reminders on activity-based prospective memory in 5- and 7-year-old children. Developmental Psychology, 58(5), 890-901. doi:10.1037/dev0001035.

Belcher, H. L., Morein-Zamir, S., Mandy, W., & Ford, R. M. (2021). Camouflaging intent, first impressions, and age of ASC diagnosis in autistic men and women. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. doi:10.1007/s10803-021-05221-3. Epub ahead of print.

Ford, R. M., & Lobao, S. N. (2019). Exploring individual differences in self-reference effects for agency and ownership in 5- to 7-year-olds. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 37(2), 168-183. doi:10.1111/bjdp.12265.

Ford, R.M. (2018). Young children’s cognitive development. In: S. Powell & K. Smith. (Eds.). An introduction to early childhood studies (4th edition, pp. 67-77). Sage Publications. ISBN 978-1-4739-7482-1

Ford, R. M., Griffiths, S., Neulinger, K., Andrews, G., Shum, D. H. K., & Gray, P. H. (2017). Impaired prospective memory but intact episodic memory in intellectually average 7- to 9-year-olds born very preterm and/or very low birth weight. Child Neuropsychology, 23(8), 954-979. doi:10.1080/09297049.2016.121609