Susan Perlman

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

Education & Training


  • BA: University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 2002
  • MA: Duke University, Durham, NC, 2006
  • PhD: Duke University, Durham, NC, 2009
  • PostDoctoral: University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, 2011

Major Awards


  • Biobehavioral Research Award for Innovative New Scientists (BRAINS), NIMH, 2015
  • NARSAD Young Investigator Award, 2016

Research Interests


Dr. Perlman’s multi-modal research program bridges the fields of social and cognitive development and social, cognitive, and affective neuroscience to form a field known as Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. She employs multiple methodological techniques including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), psychophysiological measures, eye tracking, and other behavioral and questionnaire measures to conduct cognitive and neural analyses of mechanisms underlying the development of emotion and its effects on social interactions. Her research focuses on the infancy and early childhood periods and seeks to use innovative measures to determine which children are at greatest risk for psychopathology.

See more publications

Funded Research Projects


R01 MH107540-04S1
National Institutes of Health-NIMH
Leveraging cognitive neuroscience to elucidate the neurodevelopmental phenotype of prenatal opioid exposure: Multi-level mechanisms of irritability pathways

1 R21 MH115088-01
National Institutes of Health-NIMH
Dyadic Synchrony as a Mechanism of Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT): A Neuroscience-Based Approach

R01 MH107540
National Institutes of Health-NIMH
From Irritability to Impairment: How Neurodevelopment of Executive Function and Parent-Child
Neural Synchrony Influence the Transition from Normal to Abnormal

R01 MH107540-02S1
National Institutes of Health-NIMH
Investigating Compatibility of fNIRS and fMRI in Early and Middle Childhood