The habituation paradigm is among the most ubiquitous methods for studying infant cognition. Yet, the choice of appropriate experimental design parameters can be hard to justify from previous work and often has unknown consequences for the primary outcomes of interest. Our goal is to perform a large-scale collaborative systematic review and meta-analysis, in which we describe the experimental design and reporting practices over the past 20 years of the infant habituation paradigm and weigh the impact of potentially arbitrary methodological design choices on the strength of the novelty effect. The Stage 1 Registered Report for this review just received in principle acceptance to the special issue on Open Science and Metascience in Developmental Psychology at the journal of Infant and Child Development. We are launching the data collection this spring and are welcoming new contributors to join our data extraction team!
Thus far, we have screened the literature for suitable papers, developed a coding scheme, and built a crowd-sourced workflow for coding the papers. We are inviting and offering authorship for: 1) individual contributors in exchange for 25 usable papers (+ some training), and 2) lab contributions in exchange for 50 usable papers (+ some training per participating lab member). We further hope to create opportunities for student projects and participating labs to pursue additional research questions using (part of) our dataset. At later stages of the project, contributions will be also welcome at other project levels (e.g., writing, analyses, etc.). For more information and status updates, please sign up for our mailing list and join our Slack group! You can reach out with additional questions regarding this project to Martina Zaharieva (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Simon Kucharský (email@example.com), University of Amsterdam.
How do babies learn? The ability to learn rules is at the heart of human cognition, essential for things like language, playing chess, and solving problems. But when do we develop this ability? Can babies already learn rules?
Together with labs across the world, we here at the University of Amsterdam are starting the exciting ManyBabies 3 project to answer these questions. We will present 5 to 12 month old babies with recordings of syllable sounds. Meanwhile, we observe their eye movements and head-turn behavior to gain a deeper understanding into whether babies use rules to learn languages. The study takes approximately 15 minutes.
Would you like to join our fun experiment with your baby to investigate social evaluation in infants?
Evaluating others is a crucial aspect of adult life, but do infants have the same ability to socially evaluate? As part of the ManyBabies 4 project, we are investigating whether infants between 5.5 and 10.5 months prefer prosocial over antisocial characters. To study this, we let infants watch a fun videotaped puppet show involving a helper and a hinderer. To understand how they evaluate the characters, we then measure which of the characters they prefer by observing which character they reach for. The study takes approximately 15-30 minutes. Feel free to contact us for further information and sign up!
At the very core of humanity lies the ability to mentalise – to comprehend that other people have their own thoughts and feelings, intentions and knowledge. But when exactly does this capacity develop in us? We are one of more than 20 labs around the world exploring this fundamental question in developmental psychology as part of the ManyBabies 2 (MB2) collaborative project. In this study, we let both infants aged 18 to 27 months and adults watch short animated films. Meanwhile, we measure their looking behavior. This way, we gain insight into their understanding of what others know. The study takes approximately 15 minutes.
I think human minds are fascinating, especially in the first couple of years of our lives when cognitive abilities develop. There are so many different skills we learn from a very young age that are crucial for us for the rest of our lives. As a research master’s student in developmental psychology and cognition, I’m looking forward to discovering more about infants’ cognitive development. I am part of the ManyBabies 3 project looking into rule learning abilities in infants.
Would you like to help us investigate how babies learn language? We’re running two fun experiments your babies will enjoy! Did you know that even before babies speak their first words, they are working hard to also learn the grammatical rules of their language(s)? In this study, we let 7 month old babies listen to a novel language. After a brief listening phase, we measure their looking behaviour. In this way we can understand how well they learned the rules in the language. We also investigate whether multilingual babies are better at learning these rules. The study takes approximately 15 minutes, and babies with every language background can participate. Get in touch with us for more information and sign ups!
As a Psychology Research Master’s student at the University of Amsterdam, I am specializing in what are my two main interests: clinical and developmental psychology. On the one hand, I am fascinated by the multifaceted manifestations of psychological disorders and their treatment. On the other hand, I am also interested in learning about the origins of the most fundamental aspects of human nature, one of them being social evaluation. As part of my internship project ManyBabies 4, I am, therefore, investigating social evaluation in infants.
What do we come into this world with, and what do we learn? How do we learn? Babies offer a unique opportunity for us to explore some of the most fundamental questions we have about how we become ourselves. As a research master’s student specializing in developmental psychology and psychological methodology, I am excited to be a part of the Baby Lab as we delve deeper into how babies learn and how best to study the complex processes of human development.
I’m fascinated by the developing mind and how we learn about the world around us. With a particular focus on theory of mind, which is all about understanding what other people are thinking and feeling, I am constantly amazed to see how even very young children start to develop these skills. As a research master student in developmental psychology and research methods, I’m excited to uncover even more about the incredible potential of infants’ minds
Babies are renowned for leaving those around them in awe – the first year of life is a fascinating period of rapid growth and development. As a master’s student who specializes in developmental and cognitive psychology, I find this life stage the most astonishing of all. That is why I am happy to be part of the Baby Lab where I study how a baby’s eyes and smile show us what they understand about the world.