We developed poly(vinyl alcohol-co-itaconic acid) (PV) hydrogels grafted with laminin-derived peptides that had different joint segments and several specific designs, including dual chain motifs. PV hydrogels grafted with a peptide derived from laminin-β4 (PMQKMRGDVFSP) containing a joint segment, dual chain motif and cationic amino acid insertion could attach human pluripotent stem (hPS) cells and promoted high expansion folds in long-term culture (over 10 passages) with low differentiation rates, whereas hPS cells attached poorly on PV hydrogels grafted with laminin-α5 peptides that had joint segments with and without a cationic amino acid or on PV hydrogels grafted with laminin-β4 peptides containing the joint segment only. The inclusion of a cationic amino acid in the laminin-β4 peptide was critical for hPS cell attachment on PV hydrogels, which contributed to the zeta potential shifting to higher values (3-4 mV enhancement). The novel peptide segment-grafted PV hydrogels developed in this study supported hPS cell proliferation, which induced better hPS cell expansion than recombinant vitronectin-coated dishes (gold standard of hPS cell culture dishes) in xeno-free culture conditions. After long-term culture on peptide-grafted hydrogels, hPS cells could be induced to differentiate into specific lineages of cells, such as cardiomyocytes, with high efficiency.