Lancaster University

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Human Development Centre Launched

06/09/2006 10:09:48

Lancaster University has launched a new centre dedicated to child development studies.

Research in CRHD into infant visual and auditory perception
Research in CRHD into infant visual and auditory perception

The Centre for Research in Human Development (CRHD) supports a broad spectrum of research in developmental science, with particular emphasis on studies of infant development from birth to pre-school age and beyond.

The official opening of the Centre for Research in Human Development (CRHD) took place on Thursday, June 8, 2006 at the Whewell Building, Lancaster University.

Ground-breaking research carried out by the centre ranges from studies into child eye witness testimony to research into how children learn to talk.

Other research projects include:

● Spatial awareness – how babies develop an understanding of their surroundings

● Epilepsy – investigating whether some children with epilepsy experience problems with language and communication

● Social understanding - how children come to be able to predict and explain other people's actions and how some children, like those with autism, have profound problems in these skills

The building is a unique, state-of-the art facility that contains an extensive range of resources and purpose-built labs. Facilities include sound proof labs for research into infant visual and auditory perception as well as specialist equipment for tracking eye movements and measuring limb movements.

Researchers associated with the centre benefit from belonging to a dynamic intellectual community which includes a number of internationally-recognised experts in the field.

Co-Directors of the Centre for Research in Human Development at Lancaster University are Professor Charlie Lewis, Professor Gavin Bremner and Professor Mark Howe
Co-Directors of the CRHD Professor Mark Howe, Professor Gavin Bremner, Professor Charlie Lewis, with Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Wellings and Keynote speaker Professor Charles Brainerd

Principal speakers at the launch were Charles Brainerd (Professor of Human Development, Cornell University, USA) who gave a keynote presentation “Law’s memory and memory’s laws” and Charlie Lewis (Professor of Developmental Psychology, Lancaster University) who spoke about research in developmental science at Lancaster and the role of CRHD.

Local parents, healthcare professionals and teachers, who continue to offer their support to the research programme, also attended the launch.

Professor Charlie Lewis, co-director of the Centre said:

“The Centre for Research in Child Development marks a golden opportunity for researchers at Lancaster to discover more about the key skills achieved in infancy and childhood and to apply this knowledge to children in special groups who do not achieve these milestones at the same rate. The Centre already houses funded research projects in the perceptual and cognitive abilities of infants and young children, memory development in children with learning disabilities and after maltreatment, language skills in children with motor problems and children with reading difficulties. The Centre has already allowed us to develop collaborations with scholars in many counties, including the USA, Canada and Japan. ”