The Diverse Contributions of Dr. B

For the last 40 years, Ben Bernstein, PhD, also known as the “Stress Doctor,” has collaborated with test prep tutors and tutoring companies, training students to reduce test stress and raise test scores. His original, evidence-based model for optimal performance is the core of his books, lectures, workshops and his on-going blog on the Psychology Today website.

In 2023, Bowdoin College named Dr. Bernstein the recipient of the Distinguished Educator Award. The citation read: “For Dr. Bernstein’s extraordinary contributions over five decades as an educator and more than forty years as a psychologist. He has pioneered methods of teaching in many fields that foster creativity, value individual contributions, reduce stress, and build supportive communities.” In addition to his honors Bachelor’s degree, Bernstein holds an M.Ed and Ph.D from the University of Toronto as well as an M.A. in Music Composition from Mills College.


Paralleling his career in education and psychology, Bernstein has extensive involvement in the performing arts. He created and publicly produced original films and plays with psychiatric patients in Australia and the US. As a result of this work, he was invited to be a resource artist at Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute to collaborate with writers to realize their creative ideas. He has directed theater at the Juilliard School (New York) and the National Academy for Dramatic Art (Sydney). An award-winning composer and Master Coach at the San Francisco Opera, Bernstein is the Founder and Artistic Director of The Singer’s Gym, a non-profit training workshop for professional singers to have more vitality, spontaneity and connection in their work.

In addition to his private practice, Bernstein has coached his three younger siblings in their successful artistic careers: sister Didi Conn, Frenchy in Grease; brother Andrew, the senior photographer for the NBA; and youngest brother Richard, in leading roles at the Metropolitan Opera. Bernstein’s wife, Suk Wah, is a novelist. The couple divide their time between the San Francisco Bay Area and Tamil Nadu in south India.

Partial list of possible topics

“Sport-Psychology in the Business World”

“Dealing with Stress Post-Pandemic”

“Worrying Hurts Your Business”

“What You Can Offer Others Right Now”

“Reduce Your Stress, Improve Your Performance”

“Wow, What a Great Dentist Visit!”

“I Hate Tests! How to Ace Them Anyway”

“The Three-Legged Stool: A Model for Success”

“Lighten Up! Have Fun in the Office”