How are we studying these things in infants?
Here are some of the way we are tackling these questions!
Many of our studies address the questions above using behavioral methods. This involves asking how infants, children and adults respond, verbally or nonverbally, to scenarios or people they encounter in our studies. For example, we may ask how long infants look at a surprising social behavior, how toddlers choose to interact with an adult who has or has not exhibited kindness, or how children predict others will act during social interactions.
We also use functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to study how the human brain develops, and how this development relates to the way infants and children think about and respond to the world. fNIRS uses near-infrared lights and light sensors to measure changes in blood flow caused by brain activity. The lights and sensors are attached to a soft, flexible cap that kids can wear while they sit on their parents’ laps and participate in studies.
Below are pictures of participants completing our studies as well as some stimuli that have been used!