History of DOPS

History and Description

Photo by Edwin Roseberry November, 1979 The Dalai Lama toured the UVA Grounds with Dr. Ian Stevenson, (back left) and Prof. Jeffrey Hopkins (front left). Prof. Hopkins was the Dalai Lama’s official interpreter from 1976 to 1996.

Photo by Edwin Roseberry November, 1979 The Dalai Lama toured the UVA Grounds with Dr. Ian Stevenson, (back left) and Prof. Jeffrey Hopkins (front left). Prof. Hopkins was the Dalai Lama’s official interpreter from 1976 to 1996.

The Division of Perceptual Studies (DOPS) is a research unit of the Psychiatry and Neurobehavorial Sciences of the University of Virginia’s School of Medicine. It was founded in 1967, when Dr. Ian Stevenson resigned as Chairman of the UVA Department of Psychiatry to become Director of the Division and Chester F. Carlson Professor of Psychiatry, positions he served in for the next 35 years. Early in 2002, Dr. Bruce Greyson, who has been a faculty member at DOPS since 1995, formerly the editor of the Journal of Near-Death Studies, took over as director and Carlson Professor of Psychiatry. This allowed Dr. Stevenson to devote more time to writing books and articles about his research into cases of the reincarnation type.

In September of 2014, Dr. Bruce Greyson retired from the directorship and Dr. Jim Tucker, Bonner-Lowry Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, became the Director of the Division of Perceptual Studies. Dr. Tucker has authored two books thus far on his research into the phenomena of children who claim to remember previous lives. His most recent book, Return to Life: Extraordinary cases of Children Who Remember Past Lives  was published in 2013, and his first book Life Before Life: A Scientific Investigation of Children’s Memories of Previous Lives was published in 2005.

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