Peter Gray (born 1944) is an American psychologist who currently occupies the position of research professor of psychology at Boston College. He is the author of a widely used introductory psychology textbook, Psychology, now in its seventh edition. The book broke new ground when the first edition was published (in 1991) as the first general introductory psychology textbook that brought a Darwinian perspective to the entire field. He is also author of Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life (Basic Books, 2013), and he writes a popular blog for Psychology Today magazine entitled "Freedom to Learn".
Gray is a well-known critic of standard educational systems and is frequently invited to speak to groups of parents, educators, and researchers about children's needs for free play, the psychological damage inflicted on children through our present methods of schooling, and the ways in which children are designed, by natural selection, to control their own education. He is a founder and current board president of the Alliance for Self-Directed Education, self-directed.org, a nonprofit organization aimed at helping families find alternative, more natural, routes to education.