Participate in Our Studies!

We have ongoing studies conducted in our lab and over Zoom! You can view the studies, what age ranges we are looking for, and whether they are online or in-person below. If you are interested in a study that your child is the right age for you can sign up by clicking the link and selecting an appointment that works for you. You can sign up for as many studies as your child is eligible for!

Online Studies

Do infants expect people who imitate someone to be more helpful to that person?

Ages: 8 and 9 month olds


*This study is currently on hold*
In a 15-minute study over Zoom, your baby will watch three characters interact with one another. One character will imitate the main character while the other will not. Do babies expect one character to behave prosocially compared to the other?
*This study requires a laptop or desktop computer*

Sign up here!

Do infants with siblings with autism encode objects in both social and nonsocial interactions?

Ages: 9 to 12 month olds


In a 15-minute study over Zoom, your baby will watch some videos of 1-2 people looking at an object. Do babies recognize the object they saw in the different interactions?
*This study requires that your infant has an older sibling with an autism diagnosis (proof will be requested) and you will need a laptop or desk computer*

What do infants think about people who help others?

Ages: 12 and 13 month olds


In a 15-minute study over Zoom, your baby will watch videos of someone who needs help completing a task. Do babies prefer someone who helps instead of hinders? Do they think the helper is friends with the other person?
*This study requires a laptop or desktop computer*

Do babies expect others to be upset when they fail?

Ages: 16, 17, and 18 month olds


In a 15-minute study over Zoom, your baby will watch videos of a character who wants to complete a goal, but is sometimes unsuccessful. Do babies expect that when the character fails they should be upset rather than happy?
*This study requires a laptop or desktop computer*

In-Person Studies

How do infants respond to 3rd and 1st party social interactions?

Age: 9 months - 12 months


In a 30-minute study, your baby will watch videos of someone looking at an object while wearing a cloth NIRS cap. Does your baby recognize objects they have seen before? What brain regions are activated while watching these videos?

*This study involves fNIRS Data Collection. You can read more about it here*

How do infants respond to someone struggling at a task?

Age: 14 months - 20 months


We are studying brain development related to helping and empathy! In a 30-minute study in the lab, your baby will wear a cloth NIRS cap and watch videos of people struggling or succeeding, and also have the chance to help an experimenter with minor problems.

*This study involves fNIRS Data Collection. You can read more about it here*

Sign Up for Future Studies!

Ages: 3 months to 8 years


Our lab is always looking for baby and child scientists to participate in our studies! If your child is not currently the right age for our present studies, you can sign up to be contacted when we have a study for them.

No appointment times work? If there are no open appointment slots that work for you please email us at socallab@ucsd.edu and we can find a time and day that works for you!

Child not in our age ranges? If you and your child are interested in participating in our studies, but we do not have any studies available for your child's age, please fill out this form. We will contact you when we have a new study for them!

Is now not a good time, but you want us to contact you later? Provide your name and email below and we'll send you an email in a month to give you more information about our ongoing studies.