Saba Ayman Nolley
Professor Emeritus
College of Arts and Sciences
Saba Ayman-Nolley is a developmental psychologist with training in educational psychology, early childhood education and developmental psychology- her focus has been on social and social cognitive development. She also works on curriculum development and teacher training especially in spiritual development and culturally and developmentally diverse settings as well as finding effective and efficient ways of doing program evaluation.
Courses Taught
Child Psychology
Adolescent Psychology
Developmental Psychology
General Psychology
Service Learning
Advanced Child Psychology
Art and Psychology
Research Interests
I am interested in the intersection of art and psychology. My research is primarily in how drawing can be a window to the human social mind. Using Drawings as a tool working with NEIU students, we have explored various concepts, such as family, friendship, leadership, aging, officers of law, doctors and nurses... we now have 1000's of drawings across ages and cultures, to explore and to expand. My expanded area of research is another area of non-verbal communication- gesture. I have explored math learning and teaching through gestures- collaborating with Dr. Church and our NEIU students. I also have theoretical work on development of creativity.

B.A. Psychology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City.

M.A . Early CHildhood education and development, The University of Chicago.

Ph.D.  Developmental and Educational Psychology, The University of Chicago.

Selected Publications

Koumoutsakis, T., Church, R. B., Alibali, M., Singer, M., & Ayman-Nolley, S. (2016). Gesture in instruction: Evidence from live and video lessons. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 40(4), 301-315. doi:10.1007/s10919-016-0234-z

Liu, L., Ayman, R., & Ayman-Nolley, S. (2012). Children’s image of leadership in China. In Turnbull, S., Case, P., Edwards, G., Schedlitzki, D., & Simpson, P. (Eds.), Worldly Leadership: Alternative Wisdoms for a Complex World, New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Ayman Nolley, S., & Ayman, R. (2005). Children’s Implicit Theory of Leadership. Chapter in J.

R. Meindl and Brigit Schyns (2005), Implicit Theories: Essays and Explorations, A Volume in the Leadership Horizons Series, Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.

 Ayman-Nolley, S., & Taira, L. L. (2000). Obsession with the dark side of adolescence: A decade of psychological studies. Journal of Youth Studies, 3 (1), 35-48.

Ayman-Nolley, S. (1999).  A Piagetian perspective on the dialectic process of creativity. Creativity Research Journal, 12 (4), 267-275.

Northeastern Illinois University
5500 North St. Louis Avenue
Chicago, IL 60625
United States

Office Hours
By email.
Main Campus