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Lewis & Clark Living Laboratory Studies at OMSI

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    Esmerelda Vega with a study recruit.
    Robert M Reynolds

While more projects are being developed, these are the current psychology research studies being conducted at OMSI under the Living Laboratory grant:

Do age and genetics influence cognitive control in preschoolers?

Recent evidence suggests children inherit mental as well as physical traits from their parents. Researchers predict a relationship between parents’ scores on a Stroop test and their children’s performance on a similar age-appropriate test called the Grass/Snow test. (In a Stroop test, a word is displayed in a color different from the color it actually names—for example, the word “red” is written in blue ink. In the Grass/Snow test, children must respond by pressing a green button whenever they hear the word “snow” and a white button whenever they hear “grass.” To do well on either task, participants need to suppress their well-learned response in favor of another.)
Investigator: Todd Watson

When do young children begin to understand emotions in others?

Researchers predict that children will become faster and more accurate in identifying facial expressions and emotional processes as they get older and that processing will translate into better emotional understanding.
Investigator: Jennifer LaBounty

How do children learn so quickly even though their brains are not fully developed?

Researchers believe that older children (5 to 6 years) will be better able than younger children to inhibit impulses to give well-learned responses and, at every age, children will exhibit variations in their ability to control their impulses.

Investigator: Janet Davidson

How can we enhance children’s creativity?

Research with adults shows that naming shapes and interacting with objects of many colors inhibit creativity. Researchers think keeping toys simple and one color will maximize creativity.
Investigator: Erik Nilsen

 

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